On the occasion of the 20th anniversary of the straton software, we interviewed Mr. Christian Jargot, one of the main founders and Product Manager of straton, as well as Daniel Digonnet, Philippe Breysse and Anthony Ralay who actively participate in the development of the software since its creation in 2002.
Discover through this interview how the straton adventure started and what were the levers that allowed it to be today a key player in the world of industrial automation.
How did you get the idea to create your company and the straton software?
CJ: I always wanted to start a company and our partner COPA-DATA needed to integrate automation into their SCADA software zenon. I had many years of experience in this field, so it was a timely opportunity.
How did the straton adventure start?
CJ: With a return trip to Salzburg to meet Thomas Punzenberger, founder of COPA-DATA, and the adventure was launched. As soon as we came back, we started to develop the software and since then we have never stopped developing it.
PB : We were a group of friends who worked in the same company and who no longer adhered to the strategy in place. Joining the straton adventure seemed obvious.
DD: At the beginning we only had a room with boards and trestles as an office. We moved forward very quickly and an idea could be developed from one day to the next. This is what also allowed us to acquire a certain amount of knowledge very quickly.
What are the success factors that have enabled STRATON AUTOMATION to become a reference in the market today?
CJ: Customer loyalty. We have always focused on customer relations and today we have customers with whom we have worked for 20 years, they have been with us since the beginning! It’s a collaborative development, we develop a lot of specific things for the needs of our clients.
PB: In addition to having a successful product, we were able to hire the right people at the right time, which enabled us to establish ourselves more quickly.
AR: Our responsiveness to customer needs. We developed a robust, reliable and durable product, but we also listened to our customers. By accompanying them throughout the development of their projects, and being responsive to their requests, we were able to offer them a tailor-made solution that followed their technological and strategic developments.
The straton software is integrated into the zenon software of the COPA-DATA group. What benefits does this bring to the STRATON AUTOMATION team?
CJ: straton offers a way to program logic inside the zenon SCADA. This pushes us to design a flexible and modular software. This makes it easier for us to adapt to the sometimes complex contexts of our customers.
DD: COPA-DATA helped us to step back and move forward in a structured way. At the beginning, as soon as an idea was born, we immediately developed it without really having a strategic vision. COPA-DATA helped us to develop a real strategy.
How did STRATON AUTOMATION become an expert in industrial automation and more particularly in energy?
CJ: As far as industrial automation is concerned, all members of the development team already had experience in this field before joining the straton adventure. However, we continued to train and learn along the way.
For energy, we learned on the job. When we started to enter this market, there were very few players. We spent a lot of time training ourselves to become better. The fact that we have a close relationship with our customers has also enabled us to become experts and leaders in this field. By developing solutions together with some of our clients, we have been able to benefit from their knowledge. We have team members specialised in energy and we follow all the market trends closely to remain innovative and responsive.
What can we expect from STRATON AUTOMATION in the coming years?
CJ: First of all, we want to continue to place customer relations at the centre of our priorities. We have grown and developed through this relationship over the years. The STRATON AUTOMATION team remains coherent and close-knit, which allows us to remain very reactive.
In a second phase, we want to develop new technologies while following the evolution of the market to offer our customers a development tool that respects the latest standards.
We are also planning to hire new employees to bring in new skills and offer new services.
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