LION’s business system roars to new life with OpenFrame - TmaxSoft
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Case Study
Consumer Goods
  • 30-year-old mainframe with aging legacy applications
  • Mainframe data that could not be used for business intelligence
  • Aging applications and system complexity that were affecting performance
  • High maintenance and support costs that left no budget for new development
  • Maintenance resources that were retiring with few replacements available
  • 60% reduction in maintenance and support costs
  • Improved maintenance productivity
  • Easier access to data for analytics and business intelligence
  • 20-30% improvement in performance
  • Development environment set up for IT business continuity planning

Company Overview

LION is a Japanese consumer goods company created from a merger of two companies, both of which are more than a century old.

It sells detergents, hair care and skin care products, kitchen products, healthcare products, toothpaste, toothbrushes and more. In 2018, LION’s revenue was $3.26 billion.

In addition to selling to Japanese consumers, LION exports toothpaste, toothbrushes, soap, detergent, hair and skin care products, cooking supplies, and medicines to overseas companies.

The challenge

The mainframe system that runs LION’s business functions was more than 30 years old. Since then, system functions have been added and changed extensively to address changes in the work and management environment. Although it had performed efficiently for years, after three decades, several issues had begun to occur in the systems. For example, mainframe data could not be used for data analysis such as business intelligence.

Aging applications and system complexity due to long-term use were affecting performance and finding and keeping skilled resources for maintenance was difficult. And, the cost to support and maintain the mainframe and systems was so high that there was little-to-no IT budget left for new development.

LION knew it was time to address the aging mainframe, its legacy applications, and overly complex data management. They considered a rebuilding option, but rejected it because of its difficulty, high risks, and questions around accessing source codes. Instead, they decided to migrate the host systems on the mainframe to a virtual server to reduce maintenance costs and total cost of ownership.

The solution

LION chose TmaxSoft OpenFrame to migrate their mainframe. OpenFrame offered few risks compared to rebuilding. LION could continue to use their source code easily, and there were no internal design changes. In addition, no additional resources or skills were needed for migration.

  • The scope of the project included:
  • Ensuring the independent operation of online and real-time processing
  • Integrating inter-system operation
  • Unifying distributed data
  • Migrating to the integrated, virtual x86 server while maintaining the business logic for 90 sub-systems on the mainframe
  • Migrating to Oracle Exadata from IBM DB2

After the migration, the company reported that maintenance and operating costs were reduced by 60%, maintenance productivity was improved, accessing and using data is easier, and system processing performance improved by 20 to 30%. The development environment responds to IT business continuity planning, and the knowledge and skills of retired engineers have been handed down to a new generation.

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