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Since introducing its first product in 1994, Toronto-based Spin Master has grown to be one of the world’s largest toy manufacturers and a children’s entertainment powerhouse. This success is no accident.

Spin Master’s explosive growth has been fuelled by innovation, mergers and acquisitions, evergreen brands and business expansion. Knowing that digital transformation was essential to supporting sustained growth, Spin Master engaged Hitachi to create a digital transformation foundation that included a cohesive data analytics environment.


With all of this success, what’s next?


For Spin Master, being promoted as a thought leader in the entertainment industry opens the door to other opportunities to fulfill its mission to push the boundaries of innovation, creativity, and fun. Using its digital transformation success to drive advantages in the marketplace is an enviable story – one that other business leaders want to learn more about.


Here's the path Spin Master followed to share its story, the recognition it received along the way, and the value it accumulated from the journey.


1) Networking Opportunities

It started with speaking engagements at industry events where Spin Master shared experiences with peers:

  • At the Hitachi Strategy Summit 2016, Pravine Balkaran, global head of IT at Spin Master Spin was interviewed on stage.
  • At SAPPHIRE 2017, Balkaran delivered the session “Delivering Toys at the Speed of Fun With SAP Advanced Planning and Optimization and SAP HANA.”


2) Gaining Visibility

These activities led to the appearance of their story in online articles:

  • “Hitachi Helps Spin Master Make a Play for Digitally Transforming Business With an Innovative Data Strategy.” Read the case study.
  • Spin Master Makes a Play for Digitally Transforming the Toy Business.” Review the infographic.


3) Being Recognized

With the new visibility, Spin Master found promotions coming its way. Catching the attention of the judges of the Hitachi Transformation Award lead to a video submission, a breakout session at NEXT 2017, and social media exposure:

  • At Hitachi Next 2017, Spin Master was recognized as a finalist for the Hitachi 2017 Transformation Award. Watch the video.
  • It received mention in the Peter Gerr blog, “Data is the new Gold. Are You Protesting Yours?” Read the blog.
  • A “Meet the Finalists – Spin Master” blog featured photos to help tell its success story. See the photos.
  • A Hitachi Customer Voices blog wrote about how Spin Master transformed its business with data. Read it now
  • A prominent mention in “Jump Start your Digital Transformation with Hitachi UCP for SAP HANA Platform.” Read the article
  • And then there are tweets such as the photo of Pravine Balkaran speaking at the Hitachi Strategy Summit 2016 and the graphic about challenges and global innovation.

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Most recently, Spin Master is featured in a webcast entitled “Digital Transformation Achieved – Spin Master Shares Their Journey.” Find the webcast.


4) Inspiring Others

By inspiring other businesses through sharing digital transformation best practices, Spin Master is developing strong partnerships that foster shared successes and further build its brand awareness. Done right, promotion can be a win-win game for everyone involved.

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5) Motivating Its Team

Publicly announcing successful project outcomes is an easy and effective way to promote awareness of your team’s efforts, reinforce the value of team members and motivate employees to contribute more to your organization’s success. Spin Master has given its successful team the recognition it deserves, and they use their motivation to drive for results.


Hitachi Customer Advocacy Program


At Hitachi Vantara, we’re here to help companies like Spin Master achieve the recognition they deserve with a customer advocacy program that is much more than case studies about successful technology implementations. We created this Hitachi Customer Voices community to allow innovators to share experiences, gain knowledge, build brand awareness in the global business community – and learn from like-minded people at other enterprises.


Are you interested in submitting your company for this level of recognition? Like most enterprises, you have a unique story to tell. We’ve helped many companies gain positive brand exposure with informative case studies, videos and infographics – and we can do the same for your organization. Maybe your company will grace these pages one day. Nothing would make us happier.


Learn more about Hitachi Vantara Customer Voices


Subscribe to this page – Hit ‘Follow” at the top of the page to receive notifications when new content appears.


Tell us what you think – This is your Hub: suggest new topics, content or recommend your peers.


Follow us on Twitter – @Hitachi_Voices – We’ll keep you updated with the latest customer info.

STIWA Group won the 2017 Pentaho Excellence Award in Embedded Analytics, a category that recognizes the successful embedding, extending or customizing of Pentaho to create a unique, value-added analytics solution.

Custom Analysis Tools Need Updating to Compete in Global Market

A global leader in product and high-performance manufacturing automation, the STIWA Group has more than 1,500 employees operating in seven plants in Austria, China, the United States and Germany.

The manufacturing industry is going through its own transformation. Traditionally a low margin and low growth business, manufacturers have been faced with increased demand for higher quality products at decreasing prices. Despite these challenges, manufacturers have an opportunity to leverage data and analytics to innovate, create a competitive advantage and drive new revenue streams.

To effectively compete in this global market, the STIWA Group provides their customers with a global view of their operations to increase the useful life of their machinery. However, STIWA was relying on 15-year-old analysis tools to provide data to their customers. Generating and reporting on analysis was cumbersome and time-consuming. It was difficult to customize reports, and customers couldn’t generate reports on their own. The analysis itself was limited to machine data only; it wasn’t flexible enough to handle product quality or other data sources. Only data from one machine could be analyzed at a time when most customers have multiple machines across multiple factories and need a single view of their environments.

Pentaho Captures New Data Sources and Integrates Seamlessly

The STIWA Group needed a new future-proof analysis tool that could integrate all technical data—including machine, plant, process, quality, and energy data—from fully or partially automated production. It needed to satisfy diverse operational and analytical reporting requirements, including self-service. It needed to be quick and easy to install and to start enhancing productivity immediately.

The STIWA Group relies on Pentaho as a unique, value-added analytics solution that automatically collects, processes, and networks all available signals and data— including machine, production, and quality data. Pentaho’s flexible cloud-ready platform was easily embedded into and integrated with the company’s analysis tool with minimal development and testing. While the out-of-the-box solution provided tremendous value, STIWA was able to easily customize it to get even more value for themselves and their customers. Pentaho’s customizations allowed STIWA to create a platform that addresses industry specific needs.

Future-proof Infrastructure in Place to Increase Productivity, Decrease Costs, and Grow Opportunities

Pentaho’s powerful analytics and extensible architecture helps the STIWA Group institute global tracking and tracing for safety-critical products and gain worldwide control of complex assembly and manufacturing processes. The ramp-up phase for new assembly machines is 30 percent shorter. Productivity for production lines has increased by 15 percent, and costs for IT interfaces have decreased by 35 percent. Creating custom reports no longer take a week of time; new reports and dashboards can be created in minutes.

The STIWA Group’s experience in machine construction and automotive supplier production is now embedded into its software offerings and available for all customers. Being able to integrate different data sources to provide self-service reporting has delighted customers and created new revenue streams—for example, the company can charge for additional analysis when customers want to compare machine data across equipment pieces. Thanks to Pentaho, the STIWA Group has a future-proof infrastructure in place to move to a real-time environment and start capturing even more data sources, such as energy data.


Learn more about the other 2017 Pentaho Excellence Award Winners.

Teletrac Navman won the 2017 Pentaho Excellence Award for Internet of Things (IoT), a category that recognizes organizations for leveraging data from devices to improve customer engagement, enhance operations and drive new revenue opportunities through machine learning or predictive analytics.

Fleet Management Platform Tracks Enormous Volume and Variety of Data

With 25 years of telematics experience, Teletrac Navman provides advanced data tools for location tracking, fuel monitoring, reporting, safety and compliance. Its powerful fleet management platform is used by 40,000 organizations, in six continents, and tracks more than 500,000 vehicles.

Every minute, Teletrac Navman tracks an enormous volume of data including: driver performance, safety compliance, fuel usage, and diagnostics. The company is devoted to accurately and precisely collecting data securely, by utilizing the strongest protection and controls.

Event and Segment Telematics Data Blended in Unique IoT Platform

Teletrac Navman relies on Pentaho to create a revolutionary IoT platform. It’s the first of its kind to merge two separate IoT platforms—one for event data, and one for segment data.

The Pentaho platform ingests event data which refers to specific processes such as “ignition is turned on/off” data into a single segment. Segment data is then aggregated daily and cleansed. Then it is mapped to dimensional data (by driver and by fleet) so that customers can access and view their data based on fleet and user-level access credentials.

Thanks to Pentaho’s simple drag-and-drop interface, Teletrac Navman’s customers can combine build their own reports and create a single view of data on demand. Most importantly, no developer resources are required.

Single View of IoT Data Responds to New Business Opportunities

With access to so much data, Teletrac Navman is using Pentaho’s real-time processing, predictive and prescriptive analytics to innovate and respond to new customer needs. For example, customers with multiple international operations need a single, global view of their fleet data, not just by individual geographic regions. Teletrac Navman relies on Pentaho to aggregate segments of geographic data into one holistic, global view, helping customers create benchmarks to enhance their worldwide operations.

Check out this story from SiliconANGLE to learn more about Teletrac. Learn more about the other 2017 Pentaho Excellence Award Winners.

The famous ringmaster P. T. Barnum once said, “Without promotion, something terrible happens – nothing!” But you don’t have to be a showman to reap the rewards of promoting your IT success story. Having worked with scores of customers on their digital transformation journeys, we know that every successful company has a unique story to tell. That means your company, too.


There are many benefits when you promote your IT success story. Here are five reasons to start sharing NOW: 


1. Gain visibility and network opportunities

Telling a story about how your organization achieves positive business outcomes helps you gain visibility and network within your industry, with peers and throughout the global business community.


Brazilian energy company CPFL Energia gained visibility when it converted to a Hitachi smart grid universe to provide high-quality services and safety for their customers and is sharing this experience at industry events. Watch the video.


2. Motivate your team

Publicly announcing successful project outcomes is an easy and effective way to promote awareness of your team’s efforts, reinforce the value of team members and motivate employees to contribute more to your organization’s success.


The Canadian toy maker Spin Master uses a motivated team to push the boundaries of innovation, creativity, and fun while expanding its business and introducing new brands. With Hitachi’s assistance, they reduced SAP processing time, created significant savings, and gained a 360-degree view of their customers. Watch the video.


3. Be recognized for thought leadership

Sharing your best practices helps others perform more effectively when they encounter a similar situation, and establishes your organization’s industry thought leadership.


Meat and Livestock (MLA) Australia uses Hitachi’s sensor-driven data collection and analytics to identify best practices for animal tracing, supply chain efficiency, and on-farm operations, fostering both productivity and profitability across the Australian red meat and livestock industry. Their thought leadership was recognized with the first annual Hitachi Transformation Award. Watch the video.


4. Inspire others

Your organization’s experience in identifying opportunities and taking steps to achieve new levels of excellence can inspire teams within your organization as well as leaders across industries to find their own path to excellence.


Curtin University of Technology implemented co-creating solutions with Hitachi, and will use data to lower costs, improve student retention, and create a more effective and contemporary learning experience. They offer an open invitation to scientists from other universities to use their campus to discover and innovate with data-driven research. Talk about inspiring. Watch the video.


5. Build customer confidence and loyalty

Success stories show clients your carefully thought through approach to solving difficult issues. This reassures your customers they are working with a leading technology provider and encourage strong partnerships.


Wiggle, the leading e-commerce sports retailer, developed a cloud-based sophisticated retail platform to standardize operations and support their global expansion strategy. By staying customer-centric, with a single customer view, they realized better process efficiencies and soaring customer satisfaction. Watch the video.


Capitalize on Your Success


It’s time to share your experiences, expand knowledge, and build brand awareness in the global business community. Our Hitachi Customer Advocacy program offers several ways to present your unique story, gain maximum exposure and network with peers.


That’s not all. You’ll increase brand exposure with informative case studies, speaking opportunities, videos and infographics – there are so many different ways to promote your organization. Let’s get started.


Learn more about Hitachi Vantara Customer Voices


Subscribe to this page – Hit ‘Follow” at the top of the page to receive notifications when new content appears.


Tell us what you think – This is your Hub: suggest new topics, content or recommend your peers.


Follow us on Twitter – @Hitachi_Voices We’ll keep you updated with the latest customer info.