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Maintec 2019: Standing out from the rest

09 October 2019

Maintec, the longest standing event dedicated to maintenance and reliability in the UK is back. And it’s bigger and bolder than ever.

Maintec, the longest-standing event dedicated to the maintenance industry, which this year will be celebrating 44 years, has stood the test of time – evolving and adapting to the changing profession and becoming the only annual event of its kind. 

When the event returns to The NEC, Birmingham on the 30-31 October 2019, it will be third edition of Maintec under the steerage of Western Business Exhibitions, part of the Nineteen Group, who have invested significant time and resources into revolutionising the event to ensure it remains pertinent to the maintenance and reliability engineering professionals operating in the UK today. 

In 2018, Maintec was delivered under the theme ‘The future of maintenance and reliability’, and was described by Jos Diamond, Event Manager, “a new direction” with organisers moving to a new date line of November and reducing the show down to two more impactful days. These major changes to the event format were hailed as a success with 65% of exhibitors confirming their participation for 2019 before the show doors had closed.

Details of its success has since caught the attention of a breadth of new exhibiting companies participating this year including global manufacturer and automation solution specialist, Emerson who announced their headline event partnership back in May. 

Gary Ingram, Sales Manager UK & Ireland – Reliability Solution at Emerson Automation Solutions said of the partnership: “We are delighted to be attending Maintec 2019 as Event Partner. The event will provide a fantastic forum to share our latest digital technologies with the industry.”

Platform to launch

Its high-level seminar content and breadth of exhibitor base attracts maintenance, reliability and asset professionals from across UK industry and as such is seen by many exhibitors as the best platform to launch their brand-new technology and equipment to the UK market. 

Over a fifth of exhibitors used the event as a platform to launch their new technologies and services for the first time in the UK in 2018 and while many exhibitors are still keeping the details of their launches for this year close to their chest, they  are promising to bring their very latest products, equipment and software to the event allowing visitors to see and experience the cutting-edge technology live and exclusively on the show floor.

Britain is open for business

As Britain continues to battle over its withdrawal from the European Union there is a feeling within the UK business community of uncertainty. Yet Maintec, which subsequently falls on the current withdrawal deadline (31 October) has seen a significant growth in international manufacturers and solution providers sign up to exhibit at the 2019 event. 

Global businesses including Fluke Corporation, Petro-Canada Lubricants, Valuekeep Lda, MENZEL, SDT International and Mobility Work are just some of the organisations at the event this year. 

Ultimo Software Solutions, who exhibited for the first time in 2018 to official launch their UK office have confirmed they will be returning for Maintec 2019 and describe their previous Maintec experience as “very productive”.

Freddy Voss, VP International Sales, Ultimo explains: "Maintenance software is our core business and we saw Maintec as one of the best known and prestigious maintenance events in the UK. It has broad appeal amongst many different verticals, so we felt was a great platform for us to engage with the UK for the first time."

In addition, this year’s event will also feature US-based Noria Corporation. For more than 20 years, Noria has built a reputation as a trusted advisor to the world’s leading organisations by providing world-class training, technical consulting, lubrication program development, and oil analysis and failure investigation services which have changed the way many major companies manage and monitor lubricants for maintaining optimum reliability and safety.

Austin O’Kelley, Director of Global Operations, Noria Corporation said: "Given that Noria Corp is focused on promoting reliability excellence worldwide, we see this [Maintec] as an excellent opportunity for developing client and partner relationships within the European market, as well as gaining a better understanding of the unique challenges they face so that we may assist accordingly."

Digitalisation to the fore

Education has always been part of the WBE format of Maintec. The new-look programme will feature a variety of different session formats including; keynote presentations, in-depth case study reviews of active maintenance projects, technical sessions, and panel discussions.

Each day begins with a keynote presentation, both of which emphasise the role of digitalisation in modern maintenance. Today, digitalisation offers wide-ranging potential for long-term and predictive maintenance.

A company’s digital transformation journey can start small to address a single issue, such as pump health or personnel safety and build from there. Or it can explore company-wide programmes across a full impact area, such as reliability. On an even larger scale, it can mean an enterprise-wide strategy across all manufacturing and operations areas, with a view to enabling true business transformation.

IIoT uses network-enabled intelligent sensing devices and applications to collect, analyse and act upon huge amounts of plant data. Companies in process and manufacturing have for many years been using connected sensors to feed data into computers to control their processes. The IIoT uses connectivity to extend this methodology, so that real-time data can be accessed and interpreted by experts anywhere in the world. They can then provide actionable insights that can lead to significant improvements in core areas such as energy consumption and equipment reliability.

Companies that have invested in IIoT are now achieving quantifiable business value through a significant reduction in maintenance costs. The technology can warn that a piece of critical equipment is about to fail, enabling them to repair or replace it before it does so.

But how do we that ensure the data needed for planning, processing and documenting maintenance measures is exchanged reliably? On day one (30 October), Gary Ingram from Emerson Automation Solutions will talk on ‘Accelerating the Digitalisation Journey with Operational Certainty’. Emerson studies suggest that a company can save around £40 million on their ongoing maintenance budget for every £1 billion of capital that they already have deployed in their plant.

On day two (31 October), Martin Walder, Chairman of the Engineering and Machinery Alliance (EAMA) and Vice President Industry, Schneider UK, will talk on ‘Merging IT (Information Technology) and OT (Operational Technology) to Maximise the Potential of Digitalisation’. Information Technology (IT) teams that are accustomed to working in spotless data centres now need to collaborate with Operations Technology (OT) colleagues who often work in dangerous industrial settings. What happens when OT and IT collide? If not managed well, the result can be a clash of cultures and a potential crisis.

One Schneider case study talks of an instance where IT and OT were not working well together so the manufacturer sent both IT and OT to school to learn about each other’s area of expertise!

Raising the standard

After the extremely successful partnership in 2018, Society of Operations Engineers (SOE), the professional engineering membership organisation, has once again confirmed that it will be partnering with Maintec for 2019. 

SOE promotes efficient, safe and environmentally sustainable Operations Engineering for the betterment of the community at large, with the view of also promoting public safety by supporting and encouraging the standards of competence when contributing to the society. 

All of the Maintec seminar sessions will be CPD accredited and approved by the Society of Operations Engineers, who review each session prior to the event to ensure the highest level of educational quality.

Daniel Moir, Chief Operating Office, SOE stated “Maintec is a great opportunity for SOE to showcase our insight into the industry and, by approving a quality CPD programme, help improve the technical understanding of those present at the show. It reinforces to our members the SOE commitment to professional development. We are proud to be partnering with Maintec once more.”     

Free visitor registration for Maintec is now open at www.maintec.co.uk. Follow @UKMAINTEC on Twitter for show news.