Industrial Cooperation Project in Foshan, China

Research and Development in International Business Development

The Fraunhofer IFF is helping Foshan Sino-German Robotation Academy, a franchise company of Deutsche Messe AG, guide the modernization of local businesses in Foshan as they adopt and implement Industrie 4.0 technologies. At the same time, it is helping German businesses develop or expand their Chinese markets and bolstering the competitiveness of Sino-German value chains internationally.

Challenges in the Manufacturing Sector

The People’s Republic of China is facing numerous challenges in manufacturing:

  • Mass production is steadily shifting to custom products with the goal of manufacturing lot sizes of one.
  • Manufacturers are steadily moving closer to sales markets.
  • Workforce productivity is comparatively low as wages keep rising.
  • Demographics are changing.
  • Skilled labor with specific expertise and qualifications are in demand because manufacturing conditions of changing.

Creating Awareness of Industrie 4.0

Given these challenges, the Robotation Academy Foshan, a franchise company of Deutsche Messe AG, asked the Fraunhofer IFF for assistance. The Fraunhofer IFF is helping the Robotation Academy raise awareness of Industrie 4.0 in companies in Foshan.

The Project in Foshan Rests on Three Key Elements

Development and consulting services to establish the Robotation Academy as a project center for applied Industrie 4.0 research

Development and consulting services to modernize local industry

  • Performance of Industrie 4.0 Readiness Check-Ups that comprehensively analyze local businesses modernization capabilities
  • Training of local experts in Industrie 4.0


  • Conferences for different industrial sectors
  • Seminars for professionals and executives
  • Study tour for Chinese professionals and executives

Mutual Benefits of Industrie 4.0

Both Chinese and German businesses are benefitting from the activities in Foshan and profiting long-term from the project. Since Chinese companies are often integrated in German companies’ value chains, the German economy will also profit from efficient manufacturing in Chinese companies.

Though its presence in Foshan, the Fraunhofer IFF is additionally helping German companies develop or expand their Chinese market by contributing to their research activities in China.

Both Chinese and German businesses operating in Foshan will profit from a well-trained Chinese workforce with knowledge of Industrie 4.0. This will lessen training periods and the need for further and advanced training.

Through its activities in Foshan as well as the involvement of other Fraunhofer Institutes, the Fraunhofer IFF is effectively establishing itself as a major research partner for the Foshan Sino-German Robotation Academy and the city of Foshan for years to come.

In Brief

Successful completion of the check-up project at Yizumi in Foshan.
On April 18, 2019 Dr. Hans-Peter Friedrich, Vice President of the Bundestag, learned about the Fraunhofer IFF’s collaborative project in Foshan, China.
He spoke with Kay Matzner (Head of International Projects, Fraunhofer IFF) about digital transformation, among other topics.
German President Steinmeier paid a visit to Fraunhofer-IFF’s-collaborative project in Foshan, China on December 6, 2018.
He was received by Magdalena Albers (International Project Manager, Fraunhofer IFF) and Kay Matzner (Senior Manager of International Projects, Fraunhofer IFF).
The kick-off of the Fraunhofer-IFF’s strategic collaborative project in Foshan on May 31, 2018.
The Robotation Academy in Foshan, China, and the Fraunhofer IFF agreed to intensify their collaboration.
In particular, local collaboration on robotics and Industrie 4.0 for businesses will be intensified.