Digitalisation is the word on everyone’s lips and on every company’s agenda. Deservedly so. It is also a core theme for the Subcontracting Trade Fair 2016, besides leadership. Finnish companies can succeed in the global arena if they show agility in exploiting the opportunities offered by digitalisation. At its best, digitalisation can propel the growth of a small company, helping it to become an internationally significant business at an unprecedented pace. For companies that are already playing in the big leagues, digitalisation may open new avenues for business. There have to be both winners and losers in this game, so which players will manage to turn digitalisation into profitable business?

Technology already makes many new things possible. Online technologies (such as 5G and LTE-M) will not form a bottleneck to future growth, and novel sensors and other electronic measurement devices are being developed at an ever-increasing rate. The new devices can also become more ecologically friendly. Assistance in digitalisation and the development of services related to the Internet of Things is readily available. In fact, technology providers are so numerous that consolidation of the market is likely to occur in the not-too-distant future.

How well we succeed in the digital age depends mainly on us, the people working at companies – on how quickly we can step away from old models and learn new ones, and on whether we find the right networks and partners to work with while also remaining agile and eager to develop new ideas. And we should especially remain eager to learn more about our clients. Ultimately, B2B business too is about having an impact on the end user and decision-maker on a personal level. By applying in-depth understanding of the client’s world and problems, we can break new ground for ourselves in the digital market.

Since 1993, when we launched our first digital welding machine, Kemppi has been actively involved in the creation of digital solutions. After that, the role of software in our equipment has grown exponentially, and the number of coders we employ has increased accordingly. We have long been preparing ourselves to meet the requirements of the Internet of Things and smart factories. However, our expansion into software-based business was not spurred by our need to automate our processes; instead, it was triggered by our clients’ needs and our desire to create solutions that will give our clients significant help in improving their welding operations’ productivity and quality management. Right from the start, we wanted to support the digitalisation of our clients’ business operations. As fruit of several development projects, we created the Kemppi ARC System, an ERP system for welding that our clients have benefited from for several years now.

It has not been an easy path, and changing a culture takes time. We’ve had to learn many things through trial and error. Our ICT has made a switch from data centres to cloud-based functions, our sales teams have learned the secrets of Solution sales, and our marketing department has adopted new ways of benefiting from social media, while data protection issues have climbed high on the management’s agenda. Digitalisation has also brought a complete overhaul of our offering development process.

Our aim is to remain at the forefront in our field, utilising the opportunities that digitalisation offers. This is why we have actively developed our operations in this area for years – without any extra hype.

Teresa Kemppi-Vasama is the Executive Chairman of the Kemppi Oy Board and a third-generation owner.
Katri Sahlman is Vice President of Kemppi Oy responsible for the company’s business development, Kemppi ARC System software development, and ICT.

Lahti-based Kemppi Oy is a front runner in arc welding, developing smart welding machines, welding management software, and related expert services for both consumer use and challenging industrial applications. Up to 90% of Kemppi’s solutions are sold in the international market. For more information, visit