GE is expanding its presence in Europe with an investment designed to boost innovation and collaboration for European customers and developers around its industrial Internet of Things business.
The new 'Digital Foundry' is based in Paris and will create 250 jobs as part of a scheme to expand access GE industrial tools and partners in Europe.
"Europe has the talent and infrastructure to lead a productivity revolution and the digitization of industry must be at the core of this mission," said GE Chairman and CEO Jeff Immelt. "GE is committed to helping Europe develop the building blocks for their Industrial Internet that will help the continent's companies turn information into insights and insights into outcomes."
The Paris foundry is the first of four planned for this year, each designed to incubate local startups and provide an environment for collaborating with GE customers in order to develop new applications for the industrial internet using the company's Predix operating system.
Currently 11,000 developers use the platform and GE hopes that by expanding its international presence, more will be encouraged to build applications for the software, which is used in organisations including Capgemini and Scottish Power. The latter uses GE as a supplier of digital control systems for its smarter electricity grid project.
"Since the creation of our GE Digital business and the launch of the Predix operating system, we have nearly 11,000 developers signed up, more than 100 apps and are seeing strong customer adoption," said Immelt. "For GE internally, we know we will drive $500m in productivity. Now is the time for industrials to make the switch and to drive long-term value for their business."
As well as opening the foundry in Paris, GE has also partnered with French government agencies and NUMA, the first startup accelerator in France, in order to identify and develop high-potential ideas.
"Having GE's European foundry's headquarter in Paris is a great opportunity, and we will closely work with GE Digital to create and structure an innovation ecosystem around the Industrial Internet. We are confident that we can build a strong community of startups, data scientists, developers, and software experts to find solutions to complex industrial challenges," said NUMA CEO Marie-Vorgan Le Barzic.