Deutsche Telekom is targeting billions of dollars in extra revenues as its ngena network looks to power the world’s smart industrial factories of the future.

Along with CenturyLink, Reliance Jio, SK Telecom and Cisco, the Germany-based operator founded the Next Generation Enterprise Network Alliance at last year’s Mobile World Congress in an effort to provide international network services.

Twelve months on, ngena now spans North and South America, “large parts” of Europe and “several” Asian regions, the operator said.

Ten new members, including Altice-owned SFR and Portugal Telecom, Inmarsat, Neutrona, PCCW Global and Telstra have joined the alliance.

Its Managing Director Marcus Hacke said: "The ngena global network has become more tightly meshed and will gain powerful hubs this year with which we can supply our customers with network services.

“The Frankfurt hub is already available; there will be up to 10 by the end of the year, with the next ones coming in the US, South Korea and China."

Deutsche Telekom cited research from consulting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers, which forecast that German industry plans to invest €40 billion by 2020 on the likes of connected machinery and robots.

Software-defined networks (SDN) will be the foundation for this new generation of industrial production networks, it added.

“Deutsche wants to simplify corporate international telecommunications and the control of industrial equipment around the globe,” Deutsche Telekom said in a statement.

“At Industry 4.0 companies, manufacturing and logistics organise themselves in smart factories without human control.”

Patrick Molck-Ude, who is responsible for network business for Deutsche Telekom’s corporate customers, said ngena had “struck a nerve” among its multinational customer base.

“Network services that are quickly deployable, secure, powerful and global are the engine for the industrial production of the future and a growth area for Deutsche Telekom,” he added.

“The market for network access and transport services is already worth 50 billion dollars and is increasing by 3.5 percent annually."

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