Talking Industry #7 – Digital Transformation in Industry

Key Concepts: Industry 4.0, Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), Smart Factories, Digital Twins, Machine Learning, Data Analytics, Artificial Intelligence (AI)

While an increasing number of enterprise companies and some SMEs are adopting digitally transformative technology, the UK continues to fall behind some other nations, including the US and Germany. What can be done to realise the benefits of improved efficiency and competitiveness?


Following a scene-setting introduction by Prof Sam Turner of HVM Catapult, and guided by questions from our attendees, our panel discussion will be focussed around:

  • The Digitisation Journey – Where to Start – from Product Design to Product Commissioning
  • The Digitisation Roadmap – from small steps to transforming the whole business
  • Legacy Machines – how to pass data onto the shopfloor and use it effectively
  • Bridging Operational Technology (OT) and Information Technology (IT)
  • Related Objectives – Net Zero, Efficiency, Communications, Machine Learning
  • The Made Smarter programme and UK Government Support available

Video recording




Professor Sam Turner – Chief Technology Officer, High Value Manufacturing (HVM) Catapult

Sam works across the HVM Catapult Centres, and with stakeholders including the government, to develop a manufacturing strategy for the UK. He is part of the Made Smarter strategy implementation group led by Juergen Maier and was part of the review team.

Bill Killick – Technical Key Account Manager – HMS industrial Networks

An experienced IIoT specialist with over 30 years industry knowledge in connecting people, data and machines together in industrial IoT applications. Bill holds a BEng(Hons) in Electrical & Electronic Engineering and a PgDip in Computer Science, and has worked in leading organisations such as HMS Industrial Networks, Finder Relays, Norgren Pneumatics & the Royal Navy.

Sam Thiara – UK Sales Director – MCS Control Systems Ltd

Sam has worked within the Industrial & Process Automation/Manufacturing IT technology sector for over 30 years.

Sam graduated from Coventry University with an MEng in Management of Engineering Design, worked as an applications engineer, solutions architect, channel manager and business development manager within Schneider Electric’s automation business and subsequently as the European business development lead at Emerson Process Automation.

Having led the EMEA business development activities for the Operational Certainty Consulting Group within Emerson Process Automation Sam worked closely with clients looking for advanced process control, optimisation, energy management, predictive maintenance & I4.0 solutions and latterly AI based technology solutions.

Supporting clients in automotive, food & beverage, FMCG, chemical & petrochemical, utilities, oil & gas, sugar, pulp and paper and steel industries Sam has extensive experience working for UK and Global System Integrators, gaining first-hand knowledge of the operational performance challenges faced by large and small manufacturers and supporting their drive towards I4.0.

Keith Atkinson – Automation Sales Engineer – Weidmuller UK

Keith currently works as an Automation Sales Engineer at Weidmuller UK, Keith’s role includes the design in, technical demonstration and first-level support of our Automation Solutions Portfolio and he also has national responsibility for our Automated Machine Learning platform.

Keith has been employed in the Industrial Automation environment in various roles for over 25 years. His experience straddles both Factory and Process Automation where he has been involved in the design, specification, supply and support of complex control systems from most major PLC, SCADA and DCS vendors. During his career, he joined a successful North East Systems Integrator with specialisms in the defence and process sectors and was responsible for the bid processes covering multimillion pound projects.


Michael LeFeuvre, Regional Product Manager, Red Lion ControlsDaniel Fern, UK Country Manager, IXON Cloud

Michaël Lefeuvre has spent more than a decade working in various departments of Red Lion Controls. An important part of his job is to position the company’s portfolio in the regional markets and to support its sales and marketing team.




  • Andy Pye, Consultant Editor, DFA Media
  • Aaron Blutstein, Editor, Smart Machines and Factories