After graduating from university in London, Kassim Okara joined the largest specialist distributor of control and automation products in the UK, where he worked on numerous large-scale projects. He decided to leave however, to join Omron Electronics as field sales engineer in 2015, as he had always felt that he wanted to contribute to society from a business development standpoint. At Omron, opportunities to engage with new challenges are abundant; the varying projects involve not only control equipment but also healthcare and mobility as well as initiatives to actively employ disabled persons.
At that time, Intelligent Growth Solutions (IGS) had begun working on automated vertical farming to optimize crop production. Based at the James Hutton Institute in Scotland a leading crop science and research institute, the opportunity to collaborate was one of the key considerations in this location. To advance the efforts to practical application level, IGS needed an automation solutions provider.
In search of a suitable provider, IGS found Omron. In addition to its solutions, Omron's commitment to social responsibility attracted them into collaboration.
With the addition of Omron's automation technology to the expertise and knowledge of the two organizations, the first-ever UK project for automated vertical farming using IoT was initiated. Kassim was assigned as project leader on Omron's side. His passion for his work increased by the day as he deepened his understanding of his partners' enthusiasm toward the project.
In the beginning, developing an understanding of the project was particularly challenging, as it was unprecedented so that previous case studies could not be found. Despite this, Kassim took on the project, led by his determination to respond to social needs through business.