IoT and Other Knowledge for Japanese Corporations Eyeing the Global Market

Feature article for "be CONNECTED." January 15, 2020

With the declining birthrate and aging of the population and market maturity expected to slow down the growth of the domestic market, an increasing number of Japanese companies are turning their attention to overseas markets that have great room for growth. IoT is a prime example of a technology that can be used as a weapon in a difficult market environment. KDDI, with its long history of international communications and M2M (Machine to Machine) / IoT knowledge and achievements, is ready to think about business together with our customers and support them in their endeavors.

Organizational restructuring to establish a support system in line with changes in customers' business

In order to come out on top among fierce global competition, it is key to attempt to create new businesses that utilize digital technology, and not just stay within the framework of existing businesses. However, many obstacles stand in the way, one of the main ones being different areas having differing specifications, setup and operation for ICT environments.

Hiroyuki Kimura, KDDI Global ICT Business Division Leader, says, “To maintain an ICT environment, negotiations and contracts with local solution vendors and telecommunications carriers are essential. However, legal systems and business customs differ depending on the country or region, so a lot of know-how is required to proceed smoothly.”

We want to contribute to the success of our customers through not just providing mechanisms, but through proposals that make use of our global knowledge.

KDDI Corporation
Solution Business Sector
Global ICT Business Division Leader

Hiroyuki Kimura

In April 2019, KDDI reorganized to better provide flexible support in response to changes in the way customers do business. In the area of ICT, we have combined the corporate-customer organization that was divided between domestic and overseas business and incorporated the Global ICT Division within the Solution Business Sector, enabled us to provide high-quality support both in Japan and overseas. Currently the Global ICT Division has around 2,000 people stationed at 81 offices worldwide, providing solutions locally for data centers, networks, SI and more.

“To meet the expectations of our customers in an era when global business is becoming commonplace, it was essential for us to change,” stresses Kimura. In addition, KDDI is building its “IoT Worldwide Architecture” through maximizing the capabilities of KDDI, such as its M2M service achievements over many years and career relations cultivated through providing international communication services. This is a business platform that combines the assets of various partner companies to promote customers’ global expansions.

With the “Global Communication Platform”, which is the core of the service, KDDI provides integrated management functions for telecommunications carriers that differ by region, enabling the seamless collection of data. Since KDDI acts as a single point of contact for negotiations with each carrier and contract procedures, it is possible to develop new business smoothly even if the customer does not have the needed knowledge themselves.

“In order to realize this scheme, it was essential that KDDI staff not only be familiar with the circumstances of each country, but also be deeply involved in customers’ business and ready to create services together. The ability to put this into practice is, I proudly believe, a strength of our company.” (Kimura)

Providing everything customers need from communications lines to data analysis systems

The Global Communications Platform can also be used to build a data analysis environment that meets the needs of each customer by linking with the platforms of KDDI and various partner companies.
“We can provide everything customers need, from communication lines and data analysis and utilization systems to certification on their behalf for various hardware,” explains Kimura.

In addition, the need for global data storage and management is increasing due to the expansion of cloud usage in recent years, and KDDI's data center brand "TELEHOUSE", which has reliability, high security and more than 40 locations worldwide including Japan, serves as a base for collecting IoT data and other data, and serves as a connection point with a wide variety of cloud services.

The Global Communications Platform

Joining customers on the road to business success worldwide

The idea of KDDI IoT Worldwide Architecture was born from a “connected car” development project done with Toyota Motor Corporation.

“Cars running all over the world connect to mobile networks. To do this, a telecommunications platform that enabled connections to mobile networks of carriers in each country was required,” recalls Kimura. The high-performance and highly-reliable mechanism developed for that purpose is the basis of the IoT Worldwide Architecture.

“Technology is just a tool. What is important is an environment in which customers can focus on initiatives that generate revenue and lead to growth. If through partnering with KDDI, they are able to accelerate their growth, we will be very pleased,” says Kimura.

“Customer success leads to growth for our own business.” This idea underlying KDDI's activities remain true for its global business.“I hope we can continue working together with an increasing number of customers, meeting their needs while achieving business,” says Kimura.

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