HomeNewsSuccess StoriesLeveraging data to create competitive advantage

Leveraging data to create competitive advantage

How ELCA supported Tigen Pharma in building a data-driven manufacturing

Not only digital native companies use data since years to increase their territory in their market. Who remembers that the streaming giant Netflix had initially a business model built around direct mail?

"Ask for a movie, prepare the popcorn and look forward to your DVD arriving on your doorstep in the next days". This is the same company that purchased, in 2012, two seasons of House of Cards for $100M, a political drama TV series without seeing a single episode. Instead, they looked carefully at data to determine how significant the audience was likely to be.


Closer to us, small but innovative companies use data to steer their business value on the market and create new territories. This is the case of Tigen Pharma, a Swiss clinical-stage biotech company that focuses on developing cell therapies to cure cancer. 


Tigen Pharma with ELCA, won the “Digital Economy Award 2023” in the category “Digital innovation of the year”. Convinced that they needed to leave behind the traditional “make-to-stock” manufacturing to building a new “engineer-to-order” way of delivering, they engaged in the construction of a cutting-edge “AI enabled biomanufacturing platform”.


The platform allows scaling cell and gene therapy treatments by digitizing and streamlining collaboration between clinical, compliance and manufacturing teams.

The platform offers several key features:

  • A collaborative environment where all stakeholders - clinical teams, manufacturing, and compliance - can easily access up-to-date and reliable information, built on privacy by design. 
  • Create digital twins for production sites, allowing for process monitoring across various locations.
  • Automation of process data collection to reduce failure rates and enable more reliable quality control.
  • Centralized data capture from the processes located in different hospitals.


No pain, no gain - Digitization comes with many opportunities but also challenges to overcome

Inevitably, Tigen Parma faced challenges when building their “AI enabled biomanufacturing platform":


Challenges around data:

  • Identify and setup equipment with real-time sensors and bi-directional capabilities
  • Govern, adapt and structure data collection from process development
  • Integration and interoperability of data from silos (clinical, manufacturing, etc.)
  • Collecting data from different legal entities and clinical programs


Challenges around IT:

  • Efficient Computer System Validation process to maintain a network of sites
  • Highly regulated local infrastructure and under different legal entities
  • Security, scalability, flexibility and low operating cost per sites are required


Challenges around Data Science:

  • How to leverage and maintain compliant AI used within the therapy / manufacturing process? 
  • Development of methods to overcome scarcity of data and experiment limitation
  • Variability of the biological process


But it’s worth it: As a result, Tigen Pharma will accelerate development times, allow for more affordable access to novel therapies and have a better control over manufacturing processes. All aspects of an improved competitiveness in drug development.

Data-Driven manufacturing - Any magic recipe?

It might be illusory to search for a magic recipe that can apply to any manufacturing context but maybe ingredients are easier to identify: ELCA supports companies in their digital transformation and observe that, like Tigen Pharma, successful data-driven manufacturing initiatives have a common ground: they focused on the following 3 questions:


  • How can we use the data to improve our customer-centricity and engage with our clients?
  • How can we strengthen our decision-making and which data analysis tools and services does it require?
  • How can we ensure that we have the necessary data and that it is usable?


So instead of giving our clients a dubious magic recipe, we recommend our clients to step back and to take time to align on these questions.

ELCA: an expert partner for your digital transformation

Are you ready to become a Data-Driven Enterprise? As the first independent Swiss IT company, ELCA is ready to support you in defining your Data & AI vision. Let us work together and choose the best technologies that will address your specific challenges. 

Daniel Daguerre

Head of Manufacturing

Introducing Daniel Daguerre, our Head of Manufacturing

Related Content