Home5GNestlé intros “first” all-private 5G in Latin America – with Ericsson, Claro, Embratel

Nestlé intros “first” all-private 5G in Latin America – with Ericsson, Claro, Embratel

Swiss food-and-drink manufacturing conglomerate Nestlé has tapped Brazilian telecoms duo Claro and Embratel, both subsidiaries of Mexican group América Móvil, to build a private 5G network at a factory in Caçapava, a municipality in the state of São Paulo in Brazil. Swedish vendor Ericsson has been recruited to supply the networking gear. Ericsson said the deployment is the first all-private on-premise 5G network in the whole Latin America region.

It called it “the region’s first private 5G-standalone network with a 100-percent on-premises… architecture… separate from the public mobile network”. Nokia said something similar last month, about a private 5G deployment with AT&T for an APM Terminals port on the Yucatán peninsula in Mexico. It may be the difference is the APM project uses AT&T’s spectrum in Mexico, whereas Nestlé is using “experimental” frequencies “licensed by Claro”.

Ericsson also called the Nestlé project a “world first” for the Swiss firm – to “move away from an automated to autonomous factory… [on line] with the company’s Industry 4.0 aspirations”. Certainly, the twin announcements from Nokia and Ericsson demonstrate the migration towards 5G-based enterprise networks in the region; both firms have been strong on private LTE in Latin America, mostly with carriers, and often in the mining sector.

Nestlé has 31 factories in Brazil, including three in Rio de Janeiro. The factory in Caçapava, in São Paulo, is “known for developing new technologies… later implemented in other industrial units”, the company said. Ericsson said its 5G  installation brings 25-times faster data transfer than 4G/LTE – to offer “ultra-short response times in the millisecond range”. Nestlé is already running “robotics, automation, AI/ML, virtual reality, and AGVs” at the site, said Ericsson. The new 5G network will make its operations “more reliable and comprehensive… [and] innovative”, it said.

Marcelo Melchior, chief executive at Nestlé Brazil, commented: “Nestlé’s national operation will be a reference in an unprecedented project in which it will be able to perceive the benefits of 5G for industry 4.0… We will provide greater optimization… to achieve important productivity and efficiency indices for the industry. This is another step in the journey of innovation and digital transformation carried out by Nestlé in the country.”

Gustavo Moura, manager of digital transformation for operations at Nestlé Brazil, added: “Private 5G networks provide a new reality for the industry.  For us, the benefits include changing and simplifying the factory’s physical environment and the ability to connect a large number of devices to the same network. Being the first to implement this solution in Latin America is an exciting growth opportunity.”

Rodrigo Dienstmann, president for southern Latin America at Ericsson, said: “The solution is highly resistant to intrusions and attacks, and ensures critical business operations meet the most stringent security requirements. It also provides reliable and complete coverage throughout the site, both internally and externally, making it easy to manage while also allowing full control over devices connected to the network without any extra cost per gigabyte of data.”

José Formoso, chief executive at Embratel, said: “5G… is a crucial component of Industry 4.0, providing the right infrastructure, support, stability, and latency. 5G enables the next level of digitization through the construction of an autonomous factory and will greatly benefit Nestlé’s digital investments, increasing the operational efficiency of the manufacturing unit. In addition, new, highly innovative applications can be implemented.”

Rodrigo Modesto Duclos, director of innovation and digital at Claro, said: “We have created our innovation hub, beOn Claro, to enable interaction and dialogue with other agents in the open innovation community. The aim is to generate hardware and software-based ventures that solve problems in an innovative and efficient way. All of that using Claro’s assets such as technology, infrastructure and talent to accelerate and grow new business serving various sectors. The partnership with Nestlé is instrumental in advancing practical Industry 4.0 applications.”

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