Santen Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd.
- Regionally dispersed ICT systems unable to align with global business deployment
Locally sourced servers creating waste
- Consolidate global ICT systems in a single hybrid cloud environment
- Enhance governance by relying on operations management and a help desk from a single service provider
- An ICT base and operations management system with globally standardized quality
- Quick deployment of ICT resources such as servers and networks
Santen Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd.
Corporate Officer CIO
Head of Information Systems Division
Mr. Noriaki Yamamoto
"NTT Communications helped the project proceed smoothly through global collaboration."
Silo systems hindered the company's ability to drive global expansion and increase its competitive edge
Santen Pharmaceutical offers various medical products and is Japan's leading maker of eye medicine. This company is expanding its R&D operations and sales outlets overseas in an effort to develop itself into a specialized pharmaceutical company with a global presence by 2020.
As part of its 2020 initiative, Santen acquired glaucoma and ocular hypertension treatment products developed and sold by Merck in the U.S. and has begun sales of the products in Japan, Europe, and Asia. According to Mr. Yamamoto at Santen, "We plan to raise overseas sales to approximately 50% of our overall sales volume by 2020."
When implementing this strategy, however, various challenges arose in the company's operating structure and ICT. "In the past, all of our branches around the world built and operated their own systems using various vendors for networks and data centers," explains Mr. Yamamoto. "This made it impossible to quickly upgrade systems to deal with business changes or standardize operations, creating a number of difficulties." When staff members from Japan visited a branch overseas, for example, they could not connect with the online work system in Japan because of a difference in firewall policy. Finding a solution took several days, resulting in work delays and lost man hours.
Mr. Yamamoto adds, "There were also several cases of systems being built on an on-premises basis, requiring the purchase of a server for each system. The inefficiency of this approach prevented smooth global deployment. Finally, we decided to rebuild the entire system and network on a global scale and began searching for the best solution."
Entrust a single company with the data center and network via global hybrid cloud solution
Santen requested proposals from six different carriers and vendors in Japan and from around the world. After carefully comparing and evaluating the alternatives, it chose to partner with NTT Communications (NTT Com).
The main deciding factor was NTT Com's ability to provide one-stop solutions on a global scale through Enterprise Cloud service and Arcstar Universal One network service. These two services would allow the company to build a globally unified system accessible through the cloud from any branch in the world.
Mr. Yamamoto explains, "We wanted to replace our silo systems with a single consolidated, standardized system. In the past, we had to procure new infrastructure such as servers and networks for individual locations when launching a new project or preparing a new system. This would slow down the launch. But NTT Com can meet all of our needs through the combination of EC and Arcstar Universal One. NTT Com also provides consistent quality of service everywhere around the globe. We evaluated all these points in a comprehensive way."
In addition, NTT Com realized a high-quality hybrid cloud environment through its globally available, next-generation Nexcenter data centers. Because colocation systems in NTT data centers can be seamlessly linked with systems on Enterprise Cloud, even systems that cannot be immediately migrated to the cloud can be used without affecting business.
In the pharmaceutical industry, regulated institutions must abide by GxP (Good x Practice) guidelines for product quality and safety management. These guidelines are especially necessary for specialized systems used in the research, development and manufacture of drugs. Both services provided by NTT Com meet these stringent standards.
Mr. Yamamoto says, "After visiting the actual data center and checking the operating management systems and measures in place to prevent the entry of unauthorized persons, we felt confident about placing our data in their hands. NTT Com's cloud, data-center, network and other solutions meet our standards in every respect, making them truly the ideal partner for our company."
A platform that can quickly be upgraded and easy access to a multi-language help desk
Having made its decision, Santen began migrating its system. With the support of NTT Com, the company's core systems, information systems and pharmaceutical research and development systems were allocated to the cloud or on-premises according to use.
In January 2015, the company's Japanese data centers were merged when approximately 300 server environments were transferred to NTT Com's Enterprise Cloud and data centers. In February 2015, its global network was renovated and Arcstar Universal One operations began.
Although the migration project is yet to be completed, the company is already enjoying various benefits. "For example, a server can be activated within a week when necessary," said Mr. Yamamoto. Settings for EC and Arcstar Universal One can easily be changed through a globally seamless customer portal that allows management of the company's entire system for enhanced governance.
Santen is making great use of the multi-language help desk provided by NTT Com. Expressing his satisfaction, Mr. Yamamoto recalls, "Actually, one other reason we decided on NTT Com was its help desk. Our IT staff around the world, who speak Japanese, English, French, German, Italian, Russian and Finnish, can submit their issues to NTT Com in their native language. Service quality is outstanding and 80% of our trouble tickets are solved on the first call."
In 2015, the help desks in Japan and the US will be merged. The US and EU data centers will also be consolidated. Upon completion, an advanced, standardized system will be operating on a globally seamless ICT platform.
Mr. Yamamoto says, "The information system department must always keep a step ahead of demand for the sake of the workplace. We hope NTT Com will continue providing its outstanding proactive plans for advanced use of Enterprise Cloud."
Enterprise Cloud is a secure private cloud service that complements our data center, network and server solutions. We provide a versatile and secure IT cloud infrastructure to support core business applications. A wide range of options are available, including flexible resource provisioning.
Nexcenter, the next generation data center service from NTT Communications provides world-class quality and full support.
Name: Santen Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd.
Revenue: JPY161,831 million (as of March 2015)
Business: R&D, manufacturing and sales of medicine and medical equipment. Specialization in ophthalmology. Currently enhancing its global development pipeline, building a development system for clinical trials and focusing its efforts on expanding business globally.
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(as of March, 2015)