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Anritsu builds SAP systems on IIJ GIO Virtual Platform VW Series in no time flat

As a company expanding globally, ANRITSU CORPORATION has used an IIJ data center to build and operate SAP® ERP, an integrated resource planning system on premises. The company adopted IIJ GIO Component Service Virtual Platform VW Series, which is equipped with a virtualized environment, as a platform for the freshly deployed SAP GTS. The fact that IIJ's cloud services were certified by SAP's head office in Germany was a decisive factor in the adoption.


Great East Japan Earthquake triggers use of data centers

Anritsu offers electronic measuring instruments, telecommunications equipment, optical devices, and a variety of other products to support the evolution of telecommunications. For example, with the rapid proliferation of smartphones and tablets these days, the company provides device manufacturers and telecommunications carriers throughout the world with equipment for wireless communication systems such as LTE and wireless LANs, as well as measuring instruments essential for development and quality assurance of devices, services and applications.

As part of the company's Management Information Systems Department, the Infrastructure Solutions Team is responsible for the strategic application of IT to support global business activity. "In addition to enterprise resource planning systems (ERP) and groupware, we also build and operate IT infrastructure such as networks, servers and middleware which are used as system platforms throughout companies. We share our role with the BPR Promotions Team which is in charge of upper level applications, and provide the optimal information systems to in-house users and groups," says Yuji Shinohara, the manager of the Department.

Anritsu deployed SAP ERP as its ERP approximately 10 years ago and operated it from the server room at its headquarters (Atsugi-shi, Kanagawa). After two version upgrades, the company decided to switch from a UNIX version of SAP ERP to a Windows version in 2011 when it last upgraded. However, the Great East Japan Earthquake struck during preparations for the upgrade, and after considering a business continuity plan (BCP), "we decided to outsource the ERP and other important systems that ran in-house to an external data center," says Shinohara.

Building and operating SAP systems on IIJ GIO VW Series

Anritsu used IIJ's Internet VPN for a wide area network which connected its domestic locations and Internet access services. The company decided on an IIJ data center in the Kansai region based on "our requirements for a data center which was able to seamlessly connect to a wide area network, and one which was located in western Japan, geographically separated from our Atsugi head office in order to protect and secure data in the event of a disaster," says Shinohara.

The company then built an on-premises SAP ERP production environment, development environment, and testing environment on VMware virtual servers. In addition to a backbone system, the company also built file servers, web servers and groupware for its information systems on VMware, and housed its important systems at the IIJ data center.

Anritsu also deployed SAP Global Trade Services (GTS), trade control software which expanded the functionality of SAP ERP. For this platform, the company adopted "IIJ GIO Component Service Virtual Platform VW Series," which allows clients to freely combine VMware vSphere-installed virtual servers, storage and a network resource pool to establish private cloud platforms.

"When Anritsu migrated SAP ERP from head office to IIJ's data center, we briefly used the services of another cloud provider. However, for the GTS deployment, our goal was a full-scale migration to the cloud, so we performed a thorough cost comparison with an on-premises solution. As a result, we determined that IIJ's cloud has an advantage and decided to construct SAP GTS using VW Series, says Shinohara, explaining the VW Series selection process.

IIJ's cloud services receive SAP certification

A major factor in Anritsu's decision to adopt VW Series was that IIJ had obtained SAP Certified in Hosting Services and SAP Certified in Cloud Services, designations from SAP in April 2013 for the quality of its hosting services and cloud services.

These certifications signify that security levels, operational management levels, infrastructure robustness, support systems, and other elements of a service meet SAP quality criteria. "In order for us to access SAP support, it was a prerequisite that the services used in our cloud deployment were certified," says Shinohara. Furthermore, facilities of VW Series are located in an IIJ data center in central Japan, and the selection also took disaster recovery (DR) into account.

Once the SAP GTS development environment was constructed on VMware operating from the IIJ data center in Kansai, the procedure to copy its objects onto virtual servers running on VW Series was extremely quick. After the migration to VW Series "the system ran without any problems at the level of performance we had expected. Another benefit is that we didn't have to change our construction and operating procedures because the VMware virtual environment was the same as that of an on-premises environment with VW Series," says Shinohara regarding the results of the deployment. After performing testing operations on the SAP GTS development environment, the company plans to build production and testing environments.

In addition to IIJ data center services, cloud services, and network services, the company also uses other IIJ services such as IIJ Secure MX Service for anti-spam. "We are being provided with a total information system platform to support our business. IIJ provides steadfast support, and maintains reliability and stability while also keeping operational costs to a minimum by connecting systems seamlessly," says Shinohara, in praise of IIJ's support.

Anritsu also plans to migrate the SAP ERP, which it built and runs on premises, to the IIJ cloud service in the future. This enables outsourcing of maintenance and operation of servers and other hardware assets to IIJ, eliminating the need for their physical ownership. IIJ has a thorough knowledge of server and network technologies, and possesses expertise and a proven track record.

Entrusting IT platforms to IIJ allows Anritsu's Management Information Systems Department to devote itself to planning and designing strategic uses of IT. For cloud services which host mission-critical information systems, reliability is the most important factor. IIJ GIO services can be relied on to push forward the practical application of SAP solutions.

SAP and the products and services of SAP mentioned in this document are trademarks and/or registered trademarks of SAP AG in Germany and all other countries.

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Head Office: 5-1-1 Onna, Atsugi-shi, Kanagawa, Japan
Established: 1895
Capital: 19,052 billion yen (as of March 31, 2013)
Employees: 3,771 (consolidated) 831 (non-consolidated) (as of March 31, 2013)

Developing global projects in the areas of electronic measuring instruments, information communications equipment, and optical devices, Anritsu's medium- to long-term policy, "2020 VISION", laid out its goals to "Be a leader in the global market" and "Create new business by emerging business".

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