Lamelle research laboraties takes the next step with SAP Business One from 4Most
Leading biotechnology research company to implement SAP Business One, from 4most, for stricter controls, increased data integrity and greater customer confidence
A proudly South African biotechnology research company, Lamelle Research Laboratories specialises in the research, development and distribution of preventative skincare, pharmaceutical and other professional products. Founded in 2005, Lamelle has not only enjoyed year on year double digit growth, but also some world and industry firsts. A strong focus on research, coupled with an innovative culture, has seen Lamelle responsible for breakthroughs in both skin care and the ageing process.
"Over the last ten years, we have definitely grown from strength to strength," says Tony de Barros, Sales and Marketing Director. However, with growth comes certain requirements - larger office and warehouse facilities, together with increased staff. "As a business, we had reached the stage where we needed to take the next step," says Tony de Barros, Sales and Marketing Director. Whereas its current infrastructure had initially been perfectly adequate, it was fast proving itself incapable of coping with both the daily demands as well as the facilitating of Lamelle's culture and way of doing business. "We pride ourselves on being innovative and proactive," says de Barros. However, without the necessary supporting technology platform, certain operational elements were becoming slightly reactive. "We needed to change that, before it became the norm."
Of critical importance was the 'trace from source' requirement, meaning the ability to trace the complete progress of all molecules and ingredients within each and every product - from source to South Africa, to Lamelle's office and throughout the entire manufacturing process. "The local scientific industry doesn't have the technology to create its own molecules," continues de Barros. As a result, Lamelle deals extensively with international companies across both Americas and as far afield as the East. "As we grow so too does our ability to organically grow our own molecules, but regardless the need to 'trace from source' is non-negotiable."
Whilst approximately 90% of customers respond well to Lamelle's products, there is a 5% margin who may experience some kind of genetic reaction. In these cases, it is imperative that Lamelle is able to analyse each product and its various ingredients in order to isolate any cause for concern. "The very essence of Lamelle is all about customer care and creating confidence," stresses de Barros. "It is essential that we are able to do this professionally and with excellence, reinforcing that South African companies are able to both compete and hold its own against international competitors."
Further, with regards to the export market, certain international medical councils have strict 'trace from source' regulations which need to be complied with. Players in the consumer space who are not able to do this, are going to find it increasingly difficult to do business, with ever tightening Medical Control Council regulations.
"We were sitting with an ERP system that simply wasn't going to take us where we needed to go," continues de Barros. As a result, Lamelle began researching potential options. "We had prior knowledge of SAP," continues de Barros, "and were familiar with its warehousing and 'work in progress' functionality." As a result, Lamelle began engaging with various SAP vendors, confident that it was best able to meet the necessary back office requirements. Whilst offerings across the board were very similar with regards to functionality and pricing, only 4most - a leading supplier and implementer of SAP Business One and ERP software and technology, presented the latest SAP HANA technology (real-time analytics and reporting for small and medium sized companies).
"From our very first meeting with 4most, it was clearly a marriage of true minds," says de Barros. Right from the beginning, 4most took the time to truly engage and consult with Lamelle. "Relationships are key and an integral part of our methodology and business approach," says Marius Fabian, CEO, 4most. "We respect and understand that technology is the wheel upon which a business turns. Our customers need to feel confident and secure, both with our offering as well as the team."
In keeping with this, prior to submitting its quote, the 4most team spent considerable time working through Lamelle's processes, gaining as deep an understanding as possible of who the company is and where it wants to be. "After such personal and hands-on attention, at no extra cost, we were confident that 4most was the right vendor for us to partner with," adds de Barros.
With 'go-live' scheduled for the first quarter 2016, Lamelle and 4most are currently engaged in project plan roll out involving data migration and the analysis of product recipes. "For us, it's about ensuring that all the necessary controls are in place allowing for traceability," continues de Barros.
Lamelle is also looking forward to greater accuracy of data. "Data integrity leads to a quicker decision making process, which will enable us to continue living our culture of innovative and proactive behavior," adds de Barros. Further, SAP Business One from 4most will allow Lamelle to explore new markets. "We have been slow to enter the pharmaceutical space due to the previous systems inability to trace," continues de Barros. However, as a result of SAP Business One, this will no longer be the case.
"In short, we are hoping for better controls on work in progress and the ability for increased responsiveness to our market and customers, entrenching ongoing confidence," summarises de Barros. "And a partner to hold our hand every step of the way," he adds. "We have no doubt 4most will continue to provide exactly that."
4most, established in 2004, is the number one supplier and implementer of SAP ERP business management solution software and technology solutions. With offices in South Africa, Botswana, Kenya and Namibia, along with a presence in Zambia and Malawi and a growing footprint in Tanzania, 4most offers a strong base provided by considerable experience and skills accumulated over 25 years.
We have implemented over 3000 SAP Business One users across numerous industries and have supplied services to more than 150 companies, including implementation, support and maintenance. Application modifications of SAP Business One and other ERP software systems have provided tailor-made and innovative solutions, which have created a competitive advantage for numerous businesses in Southern Africa.
4most truly partners with our clients from the very beginning. We have dynamic IT and business specialists, who provide customers with a platform for growth based on best practice and understand the SME-market as well as support functions which include infrastructure support and maintenance, software development and training.
We seek to fully understand our clients business and daily operational processes, we then address their requirements whilst sharing our knowledge and expertise and best advise them of industry standards and best practices. We provide them with a clear project plan detailing roles, responsibilities and timelines and we remain with our clients as they grow and help them to define their future business.
As an SAP Gold Partner, being the first and only partner to establish all-round SAP competency, the consistency of our expertise in business management solutions has earned 4most an award-winning reputation. The company boasts a dedicated client care centre and an in-house training facility for continued care. Our offices include a data centre to facilitate hosted solutions tailored to business specific requirements.