We are transforming our business model through the use of digital technologies across the entire value chain, from R&D and production to sales and marketing. We are converting our plants to smart factories, including in Shiga and at new facilities under construction in Suzhou. These efforts, together with the ongoing introduction of the nextgeneration ERP platform, are uncovering issues in the value chain, allowing us to optimize costs and create new value.
Santen is also making progress in building out our online platform for healthcare professionals and medical institutions, leading to the further development of an ophthalmic ecosystem. As an example, in February 2022, we launched the Santen Eyecare Education (SEE) portal, beginning in France and the Netherlands, and we are rolling out this program in other countries as well. The environment related to education has undergone changes since the outbreak of COVID-19. These changes include fewer opportunities for medical professionals to interact with each other. However, our new system provides interactive learning opportunities and contributes to the educational needs of local ophthalmologists.
In January 2020, we entered into a partnership with the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), a specialized agency of the United Nations. Our goal in this partnership is to support the Be He@lthy, Be Mobile initiative between ITU and the World Health Organization. As part of this initiative, we are developing digital health programs for developing countries in Asia and Africa to raise awareness and health literacy about myopia and myopia prevention. As a specialized company dedicated to ophthalmology, we will contribute to the further development of the ophthalmic ecosystem.