Federated agile business collaboration platforms for manufacturing will be the European answer to the common difficulties created by the “platform monopolies” that appear to dominate current thinking about global commerce. NIMBLE’s vision is to create a federated interoperable eco-system of medium-sized platforms that provide B2B connectivity for the 99% of European businesses that are SMEs and would profit from Internet platforms.
NIMBLE will develop a cloud-based, Industry 4.0, Internet-of-Things-enabled B2B platform on which European manufacturing firms can register, publish machine-readable catalogues for products and services, search for suitable supply chain partners, negotiate contracts and supply logistics, and develop private and secure B2B and M2M information exchange channels to optimise business work flows. The platform will be validated in concrete industrial scenarios.
The software infrastructure of the NIMBLE platform will be developed as open source software under an Apache-type, permissive license. NIMBLE’s governance model is a federation of platforms for multi-sided B2B trade, with mandatory interoperation between instances of the platform and with optional, added-value business functions that can be provided by third parties. Prospective NIMBLE providers will take the project infrastructure, bundle it with sectoral, regional or functional added value services and launch the new platform in the federation.
How to get there fast?
NIMBLE will start attracting early adopters from day one and develop the initial, working platform in year one. Added-value business functions follow in year two and final validation at large scale – at this stage involving hundreds of external firms – will happen in year three. To achieve these objectives, we run two dedicated programmes (AMBASSADOR and SEED) that will engage with potential early adopters and platform providers, respectively.
Since December 2017 the NIMBLE platform has been released and it is under validation by our industrial partners. A second release has been issued in May 2018 and, following a agile development approach, new ones will be issued in the next month, with an increasing set of services.
NIMBLE Platform and Industry Scenarios
“In the present, fast evolving textile and clothing market, actions to answer unpredictable demand must be taken very quickly and require high levl of diffused collaboration”
“The NIMBLE platform will improve the flow of knowledge in both direction of the value chain, leading to a faster innovation”
“A major benefit of NIMBLE will be the simplification of the data handling. Currently, this is dominated by manual tasks. These do not scale up with the quadruling of the production output.”
“The child furniture sector will benefit from the results of NIMBLE because it provides a collaboration environment for smartly managing supply chain issues as they arise in the daily business.”