Towa turned to Colt’s global network

Following the acquisition of Towa Pharmaceutical, a leading pharmaceutical company based in Japan, and in line with its internationalisation strategy, Towa International was established as an international holding company. To equip itself for this transformation, Towa had to evolve from legacy network services to implement a modern communications infrastructure in record time. Colt enabled the connection of its offices in Spain, Italy and Portugal and eliminated local resources, from servers to PBXs.

Marc Carbonés Gironella, Technology Director and responsible for end-user support at Towa International, explains how the project was developed, highlighting that its success was based on flexibility and adaptability.

In less than a year, the new IT team at Towa International became technologically independent from the former owner. According to the terms of the sale, the previous owner provided IT services for a limited time, but Towa needed a tailored infrastructure. The migration had to happen as quickly as possible too.

The project involved providing voice and data communications infrastructure to a team of more than 900 users, including the production plant in Barcelona, where 700 of the employees are based, as well as the remaining teams in Italy and Portugal. These offices were then integrated into Towa Pharmaceutical, specialising in the production and distribution of popular pharmaceuticals worldwide.

Marc Carbonés Gironella describes the challenge: “We had to create the entire infrastructure from scratch, including voice and data communications, both of which came from Colt. Our internal systems, server infrastructure and applications had to be incorporated too.” The company’s servers and services were hosted in two data centres near Barcelona, and the various offices had multiple local resources.

Since the acquisition in February 2020, Carbonés and the new CIO, Israel Remuzgo, now formed the complete IT team, and by March 31 of the following year, they stopped using the former owner’s IT systems. “Many people, including external suppliers, told us we were moving too fast, but Colt was not one of them. They supported us, understood our needs, and thanks to them and other suppliers, we could implement and disengage from the inherited infrastructure in less than a year,” explains Carbonés.

Stage two in Towa’s transformation

The company were now posed with implementing international voice and data connectivity to provide the platform for collaboration services and SaaS applications. Colt provided internet access, the SD WAN network for its offices in Spain, Italy and Portugal, and the Cloud SBC service for cloud telephony with Microsoft Teams.

“We have not had any limitations in our decisions. We eliminated local servers and PBXs in the offices, centralising everything in the data centre. For this, a competent digital infrastructure was needed to ensure a seamless experience for all users. This is even more critical in voice communications, where response time must be minimal,” Carbonés highlights.

The challenge included setting up a network segregated from the former owner and managing all resources of the newly formed IT team. “Colt quickly understood our needs and executed swiftly. We had no incidents incorporating communications and internet access into our IT services,” says Carbonés.

The renewal of telephony was another milestone of the project. The offices in Lisbon and Milan had physical PBXs, and the company was among the first to replace them with cloud voice services using Microsoft Teams and Colt’s telephony infrastructure, providing all users with direct numbers and an automatic operator service.

Colt earned Towa’s trust by demonstrating its ability to navigate the complexities of remote working after the pandemic, including how to handle the newest security threats that then faced CIOs. “Colt is one of the few operators that can provide services globally with a highly reputable quality. This is also a strategic value. We had the option to work with the main telcos in each country, but collaborating with a global operator with direct service greatly simplified the process,” notes Carbonés.

In addition to performance and operability, Carbonés highlights other factors: “As a pharmaceutical company, we must comply with various regulations, and Colt has all the necessary security, quality and environmental certifications which are crucial for us.”

In the future, Towa plans improvements at the Lisbon plant, such as implementing fibre through independent pathways, and continues to expand internationally with operations in different countries.

We highly value Colt’s proximity and its efforts to understand our needs and adapt their services. We have not stopped evolving, adding professional services so that we don’t have to set up an internal team. We don’t worry about our voice or data services anymore,” concludes Marc Carbonés Gironella.


Towa International




Data and voice modernisation in its offices in Spain, Italy and Portugal


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