Heidelberg launches industry platform Zaikio
Press manufacturing giant Heidelberg is launching a new printing industry platform called Zaikio that it hopes will become universal, inviting other developers to invest in the project.
The company said the platform is to be “open and independent” and is intended to establish fully automated, integrated processes across company boundaries that make workflows and transactions between printers, software providers, equipment manufacturers, and suppliers simpler.
Heidelberg CEO Rainer Hundsdörfer said: “With the open industry platform Zaikio, Heidelberg is actively meeting the challenges faced by the printing sector in the digital era. This marks the next milestone in the industry’s digitisation.”
Zaikio, Heidelberg said, is a central industry platform for automated supplier and customer management based on cloud technologies. It has standardised interfaces that connect existing software, cloud apps, equipment and suppliers.
The launch of Zaikio comes about a year after Heidelberg took over cloud software business Crispy Mountain.
The platform aims to “unite all industry players on a single platform” using three elements, Heidelberg said. The first element is the free Zaikio account, which enables users to log into all connected software systems with a single login. The second is the Zaikio hub, which is used to administer personal and organisation-based accounts and links the services and software of the various providers. This software can be existing, or apps developed specifically for Zaikio. And the third element is called mission control. This is a digital control centre where all data is received in a standardised form. This data can be read, edited, and restored by other apps.
The result of this is intended to be a standardised data exchange between software, hardware, and the partners involved. This is to create the basis for end-to-end automated process chains.
Hundsdörfer said Zaikio has the potential to secure a profitable future for its users in addition to making complete processes and collaboration simpler in the printing industry.
“As a founding partner and driving force of Zaikio, Heidelberg is open to working with other strategic partners and investors to grasp the opportunities digitization offers an entire industry,” Hundsdörfer said.
Heidelberg said Zaikio interfaces and tools can enable potential partners and investors to link their products with the platform and make them available through the Zaikio hub; Zaikio’s team of devleopers can provide the necessary support.
Managing director of Zaikio Matthias Prinz said only a shared, open platform that unites as many industry players as possible can bring about the change and standardisation so urgently required in the printing industry.
“Zaikio is just such a platform, combining the comprehensive Heidelberg know-how and network with Zaikio’s agile philosophy,” Prinz said. “Over the coming months, we’ll gradually be unveiling and establishing our platform.”
To sign up for a free Zaikio account, head to the Zaikio website.