Executives in Milan Innovate to Compete

Historically, ANSYS has been well known by engineers. But in the last several years, more and more executives and entrepreneurs have become interested in understanding what simulation software is and how they can implement it into their companies’ product development cycles. We say “Innovate to Compete.”

At a recent executive conference held in Italy, over 200 top executives met with ANSYS and other business partners. I can easily see why they were interested: An executive’s role is to look ahead, envisioning the products that will represent the future of their businesses. A company leader needs to find ways to create value in a very competitive environment, in which winning the market often means investing heavily in new ideas and facing the risks that come with radical innovation.

image of attendees at Innovate per Competere 2012 in Italy

Today, simulation software supplies insight so a leader can implement a strategic decision, understand which is the right product idea to invest in, determine if the innovation is feasible or not, and have confidence that this new product can realize the promises they are making to customers and shareholders. Today, entrepreneurs can soundly base their choices on virtual testing of thousands of hypotheses, taking into consideration unique ideas that can become breakthrough smart products. Simulation is helping them look into the future of their product’s strategy and make better decisions. That’s the reason behind why an executive meeting like this can be so successful.

Take a moment to view a video that features some conference participants. It is in Italian, but you’ll find an English translation below.

INNOVATE TO COMPETE – Translation of speakers

Carlo Gomarasca, managing director, ANSYS Italy

Simulation dates back to the 1970s, when ANSYS was established. That’s why engineers know us well and know how important and crucial simulation tools are for them, for their professional growth and for the growth of their companies. This concept has not always been very clear to managers and directors, because the choice and the practical use of these tools once was delegated only to the technical department. Today the choices about these tools are impacting not only on product development, but they usually have a strategic side, influencing the future of a company. Managers must now take a better look at these tools, which will allow them to make better business decisions.

Mirano Sancin, general manager, Kilometro Rosso
To be successful on the global market, we must join forces and find suitable alliances that will allow us to overcome such a difficult challenge. In particular, an economy like the Italian one, in which small and medium-sized enterprises play an important role, requires alliances and associations whose creation is primarily a cultural hurdle.

Mauro Giovanelli, Italian coordinator, Youth Group of Federmanager
Innovation certainly does not just mean working on the product and process, but also working on intangible factors such as trust, creativity and passion — which are huge assets for any company. We, young managers, have called them the “soul” factor that can make a difference in a company achieving its international goals

Lucia Chierchia, open innovation manager, Electrolux
Open innovation mainly concerns people, and the key to obtaining excellent results is the synergy among brilliant people. This initiative by Kilometro Rosso and ANSYS is an excellent way of developing and building this synergy together. Open innovation is a very important cultural change that requires an ongoing commitment by everyone to work not only on their DNA but also their mindset.

Rosa Grimaldi, scientific director, executive master in technology, University of Bologna
Universities can and should play a fundamental role in partnering with companies and, therefore, must be more active in all types of technological transfer. This means creating academic spinoffs, collaborating with companies, generating university patents, providing business advice and keeping an open mind in regards to the industrial world.

Francesco Lazzarotto, management of subsidized loans, Warrant Group
Innovation means applying technology to traditional Italian industries, which until yesterday was unthinkable. It means working on enabling technologies that transform knowledge into economy. This can be done by building a network. We need collaboration among more players in the business world, small and medium-sized companies, public and private research centers. Universities must make their knowledge available so that it can be transformed into applications.

Paolo Crippa, European patent attorney Jacobacci & Partners
A counterfeiter’s purpose is to steal the idea behind a successful solution. This can only be prevented by controlling one’s ideas through patents that allow the inventor to receive a limited monopoly for exploiting the idea. The patent must therefore be disclosed so that the community can make scientific advancements and, therefore, offer alternative solutions.

Carlo Gomarasca, managing director ANSYS Italy
Last year, while organizing the first edition of this event, we wondered whether it would be successful. This year we received excellent feedback from small and medium-sized companies in Bergamo and the surrounding area, even from Trentino and Umbria. At one point we had to close registrations, which is a strong message sent to us by the Italian market for next year’s event.

You can connect with Innovare per Competere in a number of ways:

Linkedin: innovare per competere
Twitter: @innovaecompeti
Website: http://www.innovarepercompetere.com/

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About Paolo Colombo

Paolo Colombo is the Aerospace & Defense Global Industry Director at ANSYS.
He was born in Italy in 1970, joined the Air Force as student pilot in 1992 and, though his career took a different path, he is still regularly flying. From 1999 his passion for advanced technologies brought him to work with companies’ managers and executives on emerging technologies in product engineering, rapid prototyping, additive manufacturing and engineering simulation. He joined ANSYS in 2010.
Paolo holds a BSc and an MBA majoring in Innovation management.