Hitachi unites three companies into Hitachi Vantara to drive digital change

Hitachi has merged Hitachi Data Systems, Hitachi Insight Group and Pentaho into a new company aimed at being on the cutting edge of digital innovation.

Toshiaki Higashihara, Hitachi’s President and CEO

LAS VEGAS – At Hitachi’s inaugural NEXT 2017 event for the digital enterprise here, the company is making what they are calling an announcement of enormous proportions. Three separate Hitachi companies – Hitachi Data Systems, Hitachi Insight Group, and Pentaho – have been united into Hitachi Vantara, to better drive data-driven solutions in the digital world.

“This is a very significant day in the history of Hitachi,” said Toshiaki Higashihara, Hitachi’s President and CEO. “Hitachi is very strong in both operational technologies [OT] and information technologies [IT], and by combining them we can accelerate our social innovation business. Because we are in the digital world, we are creating this very unique company to promote social innovation.”

Higashihara stressed in his keynote that Hitachi was one of the first Japanese industrial companies, created in 1910.

“These are in our DNA – Harmony, Sincerity and a Pioneering Spirit,” he said. ”With the shift to digital technology we are seeing a massive shift. Hitachi has a major role to play. We are a very unique company with over 100 years in OT and more than 50 years in IT. If we can put the sensors on trains, we can also analyze it, for predictive maintenance. We can optimize the trains’ schedule automatically, providing new value for customers.”

Higashihara said that this allows Hitachi to run an effective social innovation business, focused on a collaborative-creation framework and connecting things at an ever-increasing pace.

“It is essential to have an open and secure platform to promote collaborative creation,” he said. “To do this, we established Lumada, an IoT platform in May of last year. We can combine all these data and analyze it. This is a unique point of Hitachi. Hitachi’s goal is to be an innovation partner for the Internet of Things era, to connect business to business, industry  to industry, and community to community. This new company will focus on delivering these data solutions to the market. They will help customers to discover the true potential of data. It is a unique combination of data management, analytics and industry expertise.”

“We are really excited about Hitachi Vantara,” said Brian Householder, President and COO of Hitachi Vantara. “This brings the best of Hitachi’s technologies and intellectural properties around data, to deliver better outcomes for our customers.”

Householder emphasized that customers often tell him they didn’t know that Hitachi had all the AI, machine learning and robotics capabilities that they do.

“Creating this new company will let us emphasize that,” he said. “We are forming those together to take advantage of all the capabilities we have around data, our OT and IT expertise and our solutions and services capabilities. No other company has the OT and IT expertise that we have.”

Householder said that this will help Hitachi follow what he called a double bottom line – benefitting both business and society.

“Social innovation provides outcomes that benefit both business and society,” he said. “We need to make money. We need to help our customers make money. But we also need to contribute to society.”

Hitachi Vantara, with the assistance of its channel, will focus primarily on the Global 1000. Householder detailed how Vantara will help companies struggling while swimming in data, while driving the development of strategic software and services solutions, including Hitachi Smart Data Center software and services. Lumada, Hitachi’s IoT platform, has been upgraded with a 2.0 version, and is now available as a standalone, commercial software offering. It now has enhanced artificial intelligence, machine learning and advanced analytics capabilities.

“If you are only analyzing five per cent of your data, you are not disrupting yourself,” Householder said. “You are at risk of being disrupted.”