projector purchase helps new firm hit the ground running
Takeda Pharmaceuticals America was built from the ground up in less
than a year
yourself faced with the challenge of creating a nationwide marketing
firm from scratch in just a few short months. With nothing but a basic
blueprint in front of you, and the promise of an important product waiting
in the wings, you must begin hiring, training and equipping a team of
new employees with just the right qualities to make your new company
Though the situation
may sound familiar to many entrepreneurs, there was a major difference
at Takeda Pharmaceuticals America. The new firm was being started by
the largest pharmaceutical company in Japan. The scale, and the quality,
of the venture was far beyond anything the typical entrepreneur could
In the fall of
1998, Takeda Chemical Industries of Japan decided to create an independent
marketing firm here in the U.S. to handle its new diabetes drug ACTOS.TM
Takeda expected Food and Drug Administration approval by the following
fall, and its managers wanted to be ready to launch into action the
day that approval was granted.
Diane Ulrich, assistant
to Takeda Pharmaceuticals America President Saburo Hamanaka, was the
fifth employee to join Takeda in 1998. Since her "pioneer"
days, she has seen the number of employees swell to more than 700.
her first few months on the job Takeda moved three times, as it awaited
construction of a new five story high rise in Lincolnshire. But even
as they broke ground for the new headquarters, Takeda’s new managers
were busy interviewing and hiring on a daily basis. Interviews began
almost immediately for everything from secretaries to finance officers.
Training was an obvious and large-scale need, and the new training staff
quickly set up shop in area hotels as they waited for their own classrooms
to be built.
Many of the company’s
new employees are sales representatives who are hitting the road to
talk to physicians and other healthcare providers about ACTOS. The
product is a groundbreaking insulin sensitizer for individuals with
Type II diabetes. "As we began to recruit the ‘best of the best’
potential employees, we knew that we wanted to offer them state-of-the-art
equipment to help them and the company succeed," says Ulrich.
She brought in United Visual to outfit the new company with presentation
Takeda was searching
for just the right technology to meet a number of specific needs:
appropriately outfitting permanent spaces like the executive boardroom
and employee training rooms, as well as selecting portable equipment
that would allow a travelling sales force to make high-quality presentations
on the road.
Finding the right tools
with United Visual’s Doug Carnell to equip the company’s executive
boardroom. They chose a ceiling mounted Sharp LCD projector and fully-equipped
rack system, along with a remote that lowers the wall screen, the
lights and closes the window shades at the push of a button. The system
ensures that internal meetings, client presentations and videoconferences
all come off with maximum impact.
Maturo stepped into the picture to guide Takeda on selecting the right
technology for the new company’s training and sales programs. Ultimately,
Maturo furnished the two training rooms at the Lincolnshire headquarters
with ceiling mounted Sharp XG-E3500 projectors, screens and sound
systems. With Maturo’s help, camcorders, wireless microphones, monitors
and other technology were carefully chosen and crossed off Takeda’s
United what our needs and concerns were, and they worked closely with
me to find exactly the right fit," says Ulrich.
For example, window light was a concern in the company’s three smaller
conference rooms, as it would be for sales representatives making
presentations in all sorts of conditions out on the road. Maturo brought
in several projectors and Ulrich ultimately chose Epson PowerLite
7500 portables - 13 for use at Takeda’s headquarters and 51 more for
the nationwide sales force.
On the road with the
up the PowerLite is easy and fast, and at just under 10 pounds it’s
ideal for sales representatives who need to travel light. The unit’s
brightness and high image quality is critical to a sales force that
must project technological know-how as well as product savvy.
Each of Takeda’s
sales representatives has gone through intense training that gives
them an intimate knowledge of ACTOS and what it can do for Type II
diabetes patients. Now the sales representatives are taking that knowledge
on the road in high-quality presentations.
The sales representatives
design their own PowerPoint presentations on their laptops, and then
use the PowerLite projectors to make their presentations. Using the
laptop allows last minute changes and fast customization of professional-looking
presentations—an important consideration for the on-the-go Takeda
Off and running
The Food and
Drug Administration approved ACTOS in mid July, and the fast pace
at Takeda Pharmaceuticals America moved into hyperdrive.
is running like clockwork," says Ulrich. "We’ve got the
perfect combination of wonderful people, a great product and the right
tools that will help establish Takeda Pharmaceuticals America as a
premier diabetes-care company."