Issue: May 2015


Jabil Accelerates Innovation for Big Brands and Hot Startups at New Blue Sky Center in SV



Center Enables Collaboration, Velocity and Innovative Product Development

by Jon Knox

Jabil Circuit, Inc. (NYSE: JBL), a global provider of design, engineering, manufacturing and supply chain solutions, today announced the opening of its Blue Sky Center in San Jose, California.

“The Jabil Blue Sky Center is a hands-on showcase of our broad range of world-class capabilities,” said Jabil Chief Executive Officer Mark Mondello. “We’re working with customers who have innovative new product ideas and our Blue Sky Center is where we turn dreams and ideas into reality.”

Strategically located in the Silicon Valley, the 100,000-square-foot facility features the company’s intelligent digital supply chain toolset, called Jabil inControl, factory-of-the-future technologies, state-of-the-art Internet of Things (IoT) and rapid prototyping labs, as well as access to advanced capabilities for increasing customer collaboration and product innovation.

Jabil is one of the largest design, supply chain and manufacturing companies in the world, and the Blue Sky Center builds on the company’s industry leadership to help customers innovate and bring new products to market faster, more affordably and with less risk. An impressive roster of established market leaders and emerging innovators are using Jabil’s diversified services to optimize product development lifecycles.

Global Survey Reveals Top Supply Chain, Manufacturing and IoT Challenges

In April, Jabil sponsored a study through Dimensional Research in which more than 300 organizations assessed the biggest challenges in managing supply chains, manufacturing and developing and delivering IoT-related solutions. Key findings include:

  • More than 95 percent of respondents say lack of supply chain visibility introduces risk, with the top three risks identified as longer than desired lead time, additional shipping time and difficulty managing capacity.
  • More than 80 percent reported it would take days or weeks to understand the impact of an extreme global weather event on their supply chain.
  • Approximately 80 percent of respondents would launch products more frequently if manufacturing supported faster/more cost-effective delivery, while nearly 60 percent reported passing on a product idea because existing manufacturing processes were insufficient.
  • 75 percent of those surveyed are planning, developing or producing IoT-related products; 77 percent admit they lack expertise in-house to deliver.

 

 

Jabil Blue Sky Center Addresses Supply Chain Challenges

The Blue Sky Center features a supply chain command center powered by Jabil inControl, the company’s proprietary system. Jabil inControl provides real-time visibility of all supply chain activities and suppliers down to the component level across Jabil’s global manufacturing network. Jabil experts perform predictive analytics for customers, enabling improved speed-to-market, cost-to-market and reduced risk.  

Jabil Blue Sky Addresses Manufacturing Challenges

Jabil’s Blue Sky Center also highlights a factory-of-the-future lab to demonstrate and test automation scenarios in response to rapid technology disruption and customer personalization demand while addressing ad hoc labor, energy and material variation challenges. In this lab, robots with increased dexterity and enhanced sensing perform highly tactile processes. Jabil also features optical technologies and capabilities, such as patented active optical alignment, miniaturized projection engines, advanced photonics and specialized cameras. Applications of these technologies range from ensuring optimal image quality for the latest mobile devices and smarter automotive lighting to delivering data at the speed of light.   

Jabil Blue Sky Helps Innovators Develop IoT Solutions and Connected Everything

To help innovators deliver the latest connected home, vehicle, smart city and personal devices to the market, Jabil has amassed a cadre of IoT partners such as Intel®, Broadcom and others.  Jabil Blue Sky Center features rapid prototyping with digital model shop capabilities, including various 3D printing technologies and materials.

Customers who need help at the concept stage can utilize the services of Radius, Jabil’s product conceptualization and product design group. Radius’ West Coast design studio brings together industry-leading user experience design techniques and systems engineering across markets like consumer wearables, packaging and healthcare. The studio includes a user research and testing center and an innovation lab for active customer ideation and strategic planning.

World-Class Partnerships and Acquisitions Strengthen Industry Leadership

Jabil’s focus on the impact of emerging technologies has been sharpened through participation in the Industrial Internet Consortium. By partnering with IoT leaders, Jabil joins strategic initiatives to connect and integrate objects with people, processes and data using common architectures, interoperability and open standards. Jabil acquired San Jose-based Wolfe Engineering to accelerate new product introductions for companies in the semiconductor capital equipment market by offering extended and specialized design capabilities. In addition, the company acquired Dublin, Calif.-based AOC Technologies to round out its photonics capabilities.

Engineering Growth in a World of Change

According to Mondello, the Blue Sky Center was designed to help customers engineer growth and stay relevant during a time of unprecedented market change. “Advanced technologies and a new generation of consumers are driving massive disruption across most markets, particularly as consumers demand instantaneous access and infinite customization,” he said. “These dynamics create complexities for customers and opportunities for Jabil to empower organizations, keep them relevant and ensure competitive advantage—the Blue Sky Center showcases and enables it all.” 

 

 

  • Daniel Brady, VP, Manufacturing and Supply Chain, Crestron Electronics

“As the world's leading manufacturer of advanced control and automation systems, we manufacture more than 3,000 products relying on a complex supply chain, which spans more than 10 countries and hundreds of suppliers. The supply chain visibility that comes with Jabil’s InControl software adds exceptional value, delivering real-time information about processes, suppliers and performance for better decision making and faster issue resolution.”

 

  • Dhananja Jayalath, CEO and Co-Founder, Athos

“Jabil’s understanding of manufacturing, materials and quality is proving invaluable as we ramp our supply chain and manufacturing capabilities to meet aggressive demand for our smart fitness clothing. Thanks to Jabil’s innovative product design, development and factory of the future production capabilities, we’re achieving rapid time to market of our breakthrough fitness wearables.”

 

  • Jonathan Ballon, Vice President and General Manager, IoT Markets and Channel Acceleration at Intel
    "The IoT market is rapidly accelerating and leadership requires pulling together the various devices, disciplines and business models into a cohesive solution. Jabil’s Blue Sky center creates a fertile ground for IoT innovation, pulling all the elements required for collaboration and solution development under one roof – from design thinking workshops, to onsite prototyping and a wide range of expertise between Jabil, their customers and their partners.”

 

  • Patrick Moorhead; Founder, President and Principal Analyst, Moor Insights & Strategy

“There’s a fundamental shift taking place in the value chain today and Jabil is at the epicenter, giving both big and small companies unprecedented access to everything they need to lower barriers to market entry and take quantum leaps in product innovation. At Blue Sky, Jabil touches on every aspect of the hottest technologies to guide customers through all phases of their growth and product development lifecycles.”



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