Smart Factory India 2019 – French Expertise for Indian Industries


The 1st edition of ‘Smart Factory India’ – the Indo-French Business Forum was organised by Business France, the French Trade & Investment Commission under the aegis of the Embassy of France in India, to unite the Indian & French ecosystem from the healthcare, automotive & aeronautics sectors. The Smart Factory India event aims to bring together the French know-how and the Indian industries under one roof and assist in creating business synergies. For many years, the Indian manufacturing sector has been a significant contributor to the national GDP. To maintain this continuous growth, it becomes necessary for companies to increase productivity, competitiveness and profitability. Innovation and Investment capabilities of these industries also play an important role in the global arena. The Smart Factory concept represents a revolution in manufacturing processes based on disruptive technologies, digitalization, connectivity and innovation which are key to optimize the entire manufacturing value chain. 

According to IBEF, the Government of India has set an ambitious target of increasing the contribution of manufacturing output to 25% of the GDP by 2025, from 16% currently. Thus, in line with India’s focus on automation in manufacturing and France’s initiative to promote its ‘Factory of the Future’ know-how, Business France India organised Smart Factory India 2019. 

The CEO meet facilitated as a precursor to the Smart Factory India Event. The CEO meet was organised by Business France in partnership with the Foreign French Trade Advisers (CCE) – India Committee. This exclusive session gathered more than 15 CEO of French subsidiaries in India from large groups like Safran, Accor, Suez, Thales etc. and SMEs like Ultra Confidentiel, Wedge India, Citelum etc. The event witnessed the presence of His Excellency Mr. Emmanuel Lenain – The Ambassador of France to India, Mr Daniel Maître – Minister Counsellor & Head of the Regional Economic Department for South Asia and Mr. Jean-Michel Cassé – President of the CCE. The objective of this session was to share with the French delegation the best practices for doing business in India. As it is rightly said “Alone we can do so little, together we can do so much”, Business France united the SMEs as well as the larger groups on one single platform to promote synergies within the French ecosystem.

Furthermore, the event concluded with the sectoral breakout sessions for three sectors namely Healthcare, Automotive & Aeronautics, that took place parallelly. These sessions were not just informative but also interactive. Each session was moderated by Indian Industry experts, who gave an overview of the current market trends to the participants. The French delegation then presented their solutions in detail which helped the interested Indian companies to identify opportunities for collaboration. There were special arrangements for one to one meeting between the French and Indian companies to facilitate further discussions.  

The French delegation comprising of 8 French companies focusing on Technology, Productivity and Efficiency in factories, showcased their innovative and adaptable solutions having the potential to fulfil the demands of the Indian manufacturing sector. The Smart Factory India 2019 Event was a platform for sharing knowledge and business practices. It acted as a unique platform for Indo- French trade exchanges. The event sponsors for the Smart Factory 2019: Suez and Sopra Steria played an important part in the success. 

The Smart Factory India 2019 was one of the most important Indo-French Events organised in India which united the entire Industry value chain in sync with the Make in India initiative and the French Fab concept of Factory of the Future. Owing to the success of this pilot event the Business France Team plans to make this an annual entity to boost the Indo-French collaboration across industrial sectors in India.