Reagent for Growth

Feature Article | July 16, 2003 by admin

Mitsui Chemicals Europe GmbH, Mitsui’s European subsidiary, employs a staff of 35 to manufacture and distribute polymers, fine and specialist chemicals, and products for the IT and optics industries. For the company to develop new areas of business and effectively map business processes, its internal information systems must keep pace with its continued growth. This requires completely modernized software. ”We wanted to create an integrated database that provided all employees – from planning, sales, and finance through to controlling and quality control – with the latest information,” says Peter Kuhlmann, director of finance and accounting at Mitsui Chemicals Europe GmbH.
In myChem@icm, an industry solution developed by ICM Deutschland GmbH, Mitsui found a future-oriented concept that fit the company’s international strategy. ”Alongside the well thought out and tested functions and preconfigured business processes, what impressed us was the software’s cost/performance ratio,” says Kuhlmann.
Following the decision to introduce myChem@icm, it was implemented in the materials management, sales, finance, and controlling departments – in just three months. The project team also integrated parts of production planning and quality management into the existing company IT systems before the production system went live in January 2002.
Instead of spending time customizing the solution to fit the company’s existing structure, Mitsui put myChem@icm straight into production with its preconfigured standard functions: ”The implementation project presented us with the opportunity to rethink our organizational structure and, in some areas, alter it to fit the software,” says Kuhlmann.

Discovering new potential for improvement

The carefully thought out approach paid off. Soon after the start of the production operation, alteration of business processes to fit the software had had noticeable, positive effects. Material flow and material valuation, for example, have become much easier to monitor and manage. Control of both floating stock and the entire warehouse stock in Germany and other European countries was further optimized. Using the integrated database, Mitsui considerably accelerated the flow of information and eliminated redundant data, which reduced the error ratio significantly.
In the area of reporting, Mitsui now benefits from a number of methods of mapping and presenting relevant business processes. Financial accounting transactions, for example, can be processed much faster. ”Our monthly financial statements are processed much quicker today, and dunning processes have been accelerated, too,” says Kuhlmann. The preconfigured standard transactions make it possible to efficiently reevaluate foreign currency liabilities and debt. The industry solution’s integrative character noticeably improved workflow across all departments, which further optimized the flow of information to effectively support decisions at management level.

Thomas Kircher, IT journalist from Sindelfingen, Germany

MITSUI CHEMICALS, INC.

Headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, Mitsui Chemicals, Inc., is an international chemicals company with 13,000 employees and annual sales of around U.S.$7 billion. The European market is covered by Mitsui’s subsidiary Mitsui Chemicals Europe GmbH, based in Germany. Thirty-five employees manage the manufacture and distribution of polymers, fine chemicals, and special chemicals, as well as products for the IT and optics industries.
The mySAP All-in-One industry solution myChem@icm is in use at Mitsui Chemicals in the following departments: materials management, sales, finance, controlling, production planning (in part), quality management (in part).

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