GE says data business on track for over $1 billion in sales

NEW YORK(Reuters) - General Electric Co GE.N said on Thursday it was on track to generate more than $1 billion in revenue this year from its industrial data-analysis business, and plans to make its software platform broadly available next year.

The logo of U.S. conglomerate General Electric is pictured at the company's site in Belfort, April 27, 2014. REUTERS/Vincent Kessler

GE is making a big bet on what it calls the “Industrial Internet,” in which the company harnesses data from large industrial machines, such as power-generating turbines and jet engines, to yield productivity, efficiency and other improvements for customers.

GE said it is on track for more than $1 billion in revenue from its “Industrial Internet” offerings this year, up from $800 million last year.

“This is happening today. This is no longer a vision about the future,” GE Chief Executive Jeff Immelt told an audience of customers, analysts and others at the company’s “Minds and Machines” meeting. “Every industrial company is going to be transformed in some way around data and analytics.”

The U.S. conglomerate several years ago said it would invest $1 billion to build a software center in San Ramon, California, that now employs 1,000 engineers and other workers.

“We’re going to invest to be a leader as this industry continues to evolve,” Immelt said.

GE’s “Industrial Internet” business is powered by software called Predix, which analyzes data that helps a client’s equipment run better, consume less fuel, receive service more efficiently and minimizes unplanned downtime.

The Predix software would be available to any company in 2015, GE said in a statement.

GE touts about 40 such data-related offerings. One aviation product, Flight Efficiency Services, helps airlines improve traffic flow and flight paths to help save on fuel costs. Another, Wind Power Up, allows wind farm operators to raise output by up to 5 percent by optimizing performance based on environmental conditions.

“We’re really doing this in every GE industrial business,” Immelt said.

Additional reporting by Ankit Ajmera in Bangalore; Editing by Savio D’Souza and Nick Zieminski