two people working in a lab

Terumo migrates its SAP environment from ‘on-premise’ to Azure

Leentje Chavatte

Leentje Chavatte

Microsoft, Data & AI and Digital Transformation

Read Time, 3 min.

Terumo, a major player in the healthcare industry, has been active for nearly 100 years – and operating from Belgium for 50. The global company is a leading provider of medical devices, from hypodermic needles and stents, to life-saving heart and lung machines. Recently, the company’s EMEA headquarters fully migrated its SAP Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system to Microsoft Azure. In just a single weekend, 1,350 SAP users migrated to the cloud – smoothly and efficiently.

Medical devices: a strict market with strict regulations

The medical sector naturally pays a great deal of attention to safety, data security and privacy. And – just as importantly for Terumo’s customers – its products must be delivered on time, wherever the destination. For several years, the company has been using an advanced on-premise SAP ERP system that enables them to guarantee efficiency and meet these demands.

Terumo office from outside

Terumo headquarters in Haasrode, near Leuven, Belgium

A move from ‘on-premise’ to the cloud

Terumo’s SAP application was hosted in one of Cegeka and Exertum Belgium’s data centres. The two companies, both Microsoft partners, agreed with Terumo to move the environment to the ‘public cloud’. They received help from Azure Fast Track – a team of Microsoft engineers, specially set up to facilitate these kinds of transactions. The choice of Microsoft Azure came with significant benefits; the required ISO certificates (International Organisation for Standardisation) and FDA certificates (American Food and Drug Administration) had both already been factored into the design of the cloud – a big plus for a company in the medical sector.

Terumo uses the Azure data centre in Amsterdam. As a result, they have a guaranteed, fast and optimal connection with their headquarters in Haasrode, but also with their offices in Glasgow, Liverpool and even the American Sunrise in Florida.

 “Always-on working and communicating is paramount for us. We do not notice any loss of speed in the availability of information, including when making a connection from Florida.” – Sigurd Segers, Director Applications, Enterprise Architecture & Analytics, Terumo EMEA

The starting point is always to guarantee that the information and data the company relies on is available everywhere, up-to-date – and that there are no delays.

“Our strategy is cloud first, but we look at it case per case.” – Kris Geukens, Director ICT Infrastructure, Operations & Security, Terumo EMEA

a man standing next to a tree

(from left to right) Sigurd Segers, Director Applications, Enterprise Architecture & Analytics, Terumo EMEA and Kris Geukens, Director ICT Infrastructure, Operations & Security, Terumo EMEA

Remaining practical and thinking ahead

The entire migration happened remarkably quickly – in a single weekend – and the implementation was as smooth as anyone could have hope for. Months of preparation meant that the company had been able to put in place steps to ensure customers, employees and the outside world were hardly affected. A seamless partnership between Terumo, Fast Track, Cegeka and Exertum Belgium resulted in a flawless outcome.

“By moving everything to the cloud now, we make the future of machine learning (AI) possible. Something we definitely monitor and research closely.” – Sigurd Segers, Director Applications, Enterprise Architecture & Analytics, Terumo EMEA

While Terumo knows that its strength is principally as an expert in the market of medical devices, the company is always looking for new developments that can help it increase its efficiency and ensure success in the future.

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