Customer story

Daiichi Sankyo Europe embarks on a data-driven journey

Life sciences
Customer since

Valuing the importance of data, the forward-thinking pharmaceutical firm started its data journey.

“In today’s business environment, data is like oxygen. We breathe it every day, it’s vital for our survival and progress,” said Pavel Ermakov, Head of Data Excellence at Daiichi Sankyo Europe. “Amidst the data deluge, one thing is paramount: trust. Trust in the pristine quality and unwavering accuracy of our data. That's why crafting a single source of truth and an ironclad data governance strategy stands as our critical mission.”

Daiichi Sankyo Europe brought Pavel in to galvanize data use across the business. He believes that data is a key driver to achieving the company’s ambition of being a global pharmaceutical innovator, developing and distributing medicines that transform people’s lives. They chose Collibra as the data governance solution to support that ambition.


Collibra empowers enhanced and informed decision-making

Daiichi Sankyo Europe is part of the pharmaceutical company Daiichi Sankyo Group that discovers, develops, and delivers innovative medicines for people with cancer, cardiovascular, and other diseases with high unmet medical needs. The group has operations in more than 20 countries, more than 17,000 staff worldwide and over 120 years of scientific expertise.

Daiichi Sankyo Europe recognized that data is critical to effective business operations.  By driving better decision-making, the organization can achieve its goal of becoming an innovative global healthcare company contributing to the sustainable development of society. As such, Daiichi Sankyo Europe started to use data to gain a 360-degree understanding of the healthcare professional community, their needs, how best to interact with and serve them, and to predict future products and offers.


Navigating a complex data landscape

“We needed to find an effective way to navigate this complex data landscape and unleash the full potential of our data,” shared Pavel. “So, we initiated a strategic drive towards operational and data excellence, a journey that encompassed data consolidation, establishing a data marketplace, and embedding better and consistent data management practices.”

Specifically, the business aimed to transition from utilizing data solely for retrospective reporting, to leveraging it for predictive insights, accelerating and enhancing the decision-making. 

Pavel heads up a Munich-based Data Excellence team, responsible for data and BI-related topics, such as data governance, data quality, data engineering, data architecture and data analytics. On his first day at Daiichi Sanyo Europe, Pavel was immediately introduced to a multitude of pharmaceutical data acronyms. Recognizing the immediate necessity for clarity and efficient data comprehension, it became evident that implementing a comprehensive data governance solution was essential for the organization's streamlined operations and effective communication.

The company ran an RFP with six providers, ultimately reducing that to three key players. Pavel was a bit surprised by Collibra’s approach because it constantly challenged Daiichi Sankyo Europe to understand why a data governance solution was needed and what value the company thought it could deliver. “I liked Collibra’s approach because, from the get-go, it made us work very hard which focused us on understanding exactly what we needed and why,” recalled Pavel.  

Based on a series of demonstrations and solution tests, plus Pavel and his team's extensive knowledge and experience in the data field, the company selected Collibra. “To gain insight into the sourcing of our analytical dashboards and reports, ML models, the definition of KPIs, the glossary, and data ownership we needed a solution like Collibra.” explained Pavel.


Building a decentralized data culture

With a decentralized data culture, data governance isn't a gatekeeper; it's an enabler. It's about creating an environment where data is not hoarded but shared, where insights flow freely, and where collaboration is fueled by data.

Daiichi Sankyo Europe is pioneering this culture and employs a cloud-first strategy using Collibra Data Intelligence Platform that currently includes Data Catalog and Data Governance as the foundation of the company’s data governance platform. It is already looking at Collibra Data Quality & Observability as the next phase of the deployment. Furthermore, Collibra integrates with the company's Data Products Platform (Snowflake); BI platform (Power BI); a CRM application for the life sciences industry; and dbt, a data transformation tool; with ServiceNow and Jira expected soon.

Daiichi Sankyo Europe used Collibra Rapid Start, a best-practice guidance, configuration, coaching and enablement service, to roll out the first use case in under two months. 

Because Daiichi Sankyo Europe has 15 country affiliates, the company adopted a contemporary hybrid data mesh model that harmonizes the dynamics of decentralized data governance. “We are moving towards a world where data isn't a privilege but a fundamental right — an ecosystem where every team and individual has access to the data they need to drive innovation and make informed decisions,“ explained Pavel.

The company’s first Collibra use case was focused on KPI definition and standardization across affiliates, how this KPI is collected, calculated in different regions and used in various analytics. Before that use case in Collibra Data Intelligence Platform, methodologies for calculating KPI across different regional operations were not aligned and the head office spent significant time applying conditions and additional calculations to gain a view of overall performance.


Single, centralized data foundation

“One of the biggest benefits of Collibra has been to build a single and centralized foundation for overseeing our invaluable data assets,” said Pavel. “People in the business can now stop wasting time running around going to meetings, making phone calls, or sending emails to chase information. Instead, they go straight to Collibra for the information they need.”

Collibra is helping the business understand its data classification, especially for improving GDPR and pharma-specific compliance  — though Daiichi Sankyo Europe is already fully compliant. The difference that Collibra delivers is providing a single place for policies, classification and integration with compliance data, thereby enabling a better understanding of how that data is used. 

Collibra controls and manages data governance policies and workflows which helps business users leverage data assets effectively. “Collibra means we have one standard and one set of data guidelines. It simplifies processes and streamlines effort,” explained Pavel. “Collibra stands out as one of a select group of solution building blocks for business operations at Daiichi Sankyo Europe.”

Daiichi Sankyo Europe aims to be part of an innovative global healthcare company contributing to the sustainable development of society. Collibra is a key building block of our future data-driven strategy. Collibra gives us one place to govern our data, understand what we have, and leverage the information in our decision-making processes. The adoption of Collibra in Daiichi Sankyo Europe is rapidly gaining momentum and making data literacy an integral part of our day-to-day work.
Pavel Ermakov
Head of Data Excellence,
Daiichi Sankyo Europe

Related technology partners

Together, Collibra Data Intelligence Platform and Snowflake Data Cloud give enterprises the ability to easily discover and scale access to trusted data.

Collibra and Power BI streamline access and understanding of Power BI reports and relevant datasets in one platform.