Artificial Intelligence AI For All Foundries - Partnership with Strategic Investment
Norican Global A/S, a metallic parts enhancement company, has taken a minority shareholding in South Africa-based DataProphet, a global specialist in Artificial Intelligence for manufacturing. Norican CEO Anders Wilhjelm will take a seat on DataProphet’s board.
Norican’s participation in DataProphet’s USD6 million Series A financing round follows its industry-exclusive partnership with DataProphet, announced in January 2020, and Norican’s May 2020 launch of its commercial artificial intelligence (AI) application Monitizer Prescribe which incorporates DataProphet’s AI engine.
Monitizer Prescribe is a cloud-based AI service that rapidly optimizes production and reduces scrap in real-life foundry environments. “We remain committed and passionate about bringing practical AI applications into foundries, and we are excited to now become a shareholder in DataProphet,” says Anders Wilhjelm, CEO of Norican Group. “With fresh capital, DataProphet can accelerate their development efforts to benefit both Norican’s customers and other industrial clients.”
“Our experience so far shows massive value in leveraging AI to reduce waste and resource consumption, as well as to increase yield,” continues Anders. “We have already seen substantial customer interest in Monitizer Prescribe and are very optimistic about what DataProphet and Norican can achieve together.” Over the last three years, Norican has grown its data acquisition and automation solutions to create the Monitizer Industry 4.0 platform. Monitizer offers sophisticated digital tools that help foundries collect, visualize and analyze process data in order to make better decisions.
As part of this data-driven focus on quality improvement and cost saving, Norican and DataProphet started to jointly develop commercial digital products in 2018. With this new funding round, DataProphet will grow its international presence to further support Norican and other industrial customers and partners. “AI is just a tool. To truly deliver practical value, industry-specific expert knowledge needs to be embedded into its system design,” says Frans Cronje, CEO of DataProphet. “Over the past 24 months, through our commercial relationship and the combined expertise of Norican's and DataProphet's teams, we have realized that value for customers in the metal casting industry.”
“Norican participating in this round further improves our alignment and I look forward to welcoming Anders onto DataProphet's board to help guide us strategically towards a practical and meaningful holistic suite of AI solutions for industrial customers and partners.” Monitizer Prescribe is an equipment-agnostic service that works with solutions from all Norican brands (DISA, Italpresse Gauss, StrikoWestofen and Wheelabrator), and with non-Norican equipment. DataProphet have proven the technology behind Monitizer Prescribe over the past three years, with one project at a South African iron foundry reducing defects by 50 % in the first month and achieving 0 % external defects for three months, saving over USD100,000 every month.