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Market Insights from Hamilton Beach Brands: The Evolution of Consumer-Focused IoT technology, and How Irish Innovation is Helping Bring it All Home

Innovative Irish companies are delivering solutions for every facet of the Internet of Things. Deep expertise in 4G and 5G networks means that Irish companies enable some of the world’s most advanced IoT applications. In fact, many of the world’s most impactful IoT companies are Irish: Cubic Telecom connects many of the world’s leading car marques, Health Beacon is a leader in connected health and in-home IoT technology, and Davra Networks has developed the industry-standard application enablement platform.

Consumers have been hearing about connected homes, connected cars, and all sorts of next-level capabilities for some time now. The battle for the home and the hub of our connected lives is evident. Google, Amazon, and Apple want to be the nexus of our lives.

We recently caught up with Rob George, the Vice President of Corporate Development and Strategy for Hamilton Beach Brands Inc. George and the Hamilton Beach team have worked closely with Enterprise Ireland-supported firms on IoT and consumer technology product development. Here’s what he had to say about Irish innovation.

Please tell us about your role at Hamilton Beach Brands 

I work closely with our CEO to position and enable Hamilton Beach Brands to achieve long-term, profitable growth through strategic acquisitions and partnerships. I always keep a watchful eye out for opportunities with the right fit for our consumers and shareholders.

How has your career evolved due to the impact of IoT and technology? 

Everything is “smart” these days, and home appliances are no different. In many ways, IoT is still in its infancy in the small kitchen appliance industry, so there is plenty of untapped potential for strategic acquisitions and partnerships. Our classic product development models do not easily transition into bringing these technologies into fruition, so it is important to seek these opportunities elsewhere through collaboration. 

What do you see as coming next within the industry? 

IoT innovation is always coming up with new ways to make our consumer experiences better. Imagine an air purifier that gets automatic updates on daily air quality and then adjust its settings accordingly. This provides a much healthier, cleaner home environment. Connected health and telemedicine and how those systems are brought into the home are areas of great potential for us right now. 

What is your experience with Irish companies?

I have had some lovely experiences with Irish companies. What sets the Irish IoT players apart is the end-to-end capabilities. From antennas to devices to back-end systems, the whole ecosystem has impressed me, and I love how these companies work well together.

How can Irish firms continue to innovate and work with U.S. companies?

Enterprise Ireland provides an excellent opportunity for Irish innovators to work with companies like Hamilton Beach. In my experience, this is a unique level of support giving Irish tech companies a distinct advantage in working with U.S. companies. These connections provide access to the U.S. market, as well as to unparalleled, nationwide distribution and logistics networks that can catapult value creation for both partners.

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