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Vapo Group: Cloud-based ERP solution for new business delivered in record time

Cloud-based ERP system with operational and cost benefits enabled Vapo Group to launch Novactor, a new activated carbon business.

Heikki Alho

Head of Microsoft Dynamics

The challenge

In 2020, international conglomerate Vapo Group launched Novactor, a new activated carbon business. They needed a scalable and affordable cloud enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution that would meet the needs of this new business area. Furthermore, they wanted to utilize this process as a pilot for cloud-based ERP transformation across all of Vapo Group.

The solution

Based on an extensive customer business understanding, cloud and technical capabilities and a hands-on project team, Tietoevry designed and delivered a Microsoft Dynamics 365 cloud enterprise resource planning (ERP) system within a 6-month time frame.

Microsoft Dynamics 365 services Learn more about how cloud can enable business transformation and continuity

About the customer

Novactor, part of Vapo Group, aims to be a significant player in the European activated carbon market. Novactor is building its first production unit in Finland, with production to start by the end of 2020. Several new production lines are planned to be built in the near future, with the aim of Novactor becoming a major player in the activated carbon market.

Cloud-based ERP that enabled Vapo to realize its business goals for its new business area.

Supports new business growth

Cloud-based ERP that enabled Vapo to realize its business goals for its new business area.

Cloud-based digital transformation was demonstrated to benefit business across all of Vapo Group.

Successful start to cloud transformation

Cloud-based digital transformation was demonstrated to benefit business across all of Vapo Group.

Solution delivered within 6 months, with instant cost and operational benefits.

Rapid and cost-effective

Solution delivered within 6 months, with instant cost and operational benefits.

Doubling up on cloud

Tietoevry has collaborated with Vapo for several years as a trusted development partner, including numerous ERP deliveries. For the 2020 launch of Novactor, Tietoevry used its vast experience and knowledge of Vapo Group’s business, processes and operational needs to help its partner in two areas. First, to design and implement a cloud-based ERP system for the new activated carbon business. Second, to outline a cloud transformation roadmap based on the cloud-based ERP system. In other words, this project would be a pilot demonstrating how cloud-based solutions can support Vapo Group’s other business and operational targets.

Cloud-based ERP delivered in record time – with operational and cost benefits

The required cloud-based ERP for Novactor was delivered within 6 months, bringing immediate cost and operational benefits. The solution enabled Vapo to establish the new business, including production, sales and other functions, before the opening its first activated carbon factory in Finland in late 2020.

The ERP project was conducted in tight collaboration with Vapo’s business and IT leadership. Critical phases included analysis and proof-of-concept phases, which showcased how Vapo’s new activated carbon operations and business would run in the cloud-based ERP. Because the new business area did not have existing legacy systems, it offered a great opportunity for Vapo to pilot Microsoft Dynamics 365 and cloud in an ERP context.

We stayed on schedule and budget. Previously, we have never been able to deliver ERP systems on such a fast schedule and cost-efficiently.

Jukka Holm, CIO, Vapo Group

This approach and Microsoft Dynamics 365 offer direct and cloud-native benefits. Automated version updates enable a focus on business development instead of technology development. All development work can be feature-driven, and solution management is easier in a cloud context. Microsoft Dynamics 365 natively supports Azure platforming, meaning all Azure-benefits, such as AI and IoT tools, can be utilized. ERP built on MS Dynamics 365 is also integrated with other Microsoft solutions, such as Team and Office, offering workflow and process benefits.

First successful steps in a larger cloud transformation

The successful cloud-based ERP acted as a proof of concept to accelerate Vapo’s business transformation and support the launch of the new activated carbon business – all while ensuring that Vapo is able to fulfill its business and transformation goals according to its targets. But in the bigger picture, it also proved that cloud-technology can more broadly support Vapo Group in its business needs and digital transformation.

Currently, Vapo Group has dozens of different systems with varied and loose integrations. In collaboration with Tietoevry, Vapo also outlined a cloud transformation roadmap at a group level. From the roadmap, Vapo planned out the vision and realized the cost-saving potential of having a few tightly integrated platforms that support business needs and enable integration savings as well as better operational stability.

Based on the successful cloud-based ERP for Novactor, Vapo is confident about moving ahead on its overall cloud transformation roadmap.

The success of our project assured us that cloud transformation is relevant and achievable to our other businesses as well. It gave us assurance to move ahead on our cloud transformation roadmap.

Jukka Holm, CIO, Vapo Group

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