Challenge: Help customers take advantage of the cloud to store data and simplify compliance.
Solution: Partner with Hitachi Vantara to develop a secure and stable hybrid cloud platform.
AKQUINET helps customers achieve their digitalization goals with cost-effective cloud solutions.
With greater digitalization comes greater IT complexity. From centralizing health records to archiving financial data, AKQUINET helps its customers achieve their business goals by delivering complex solutions via a straightforward, cloud-based approach.
In the process of providing bespoke solutions for its customers, AKQUINET recognized that an increasing number of its customers were looking for a similar solution: a secure and local cloud platform from which they could host key business applications.
“Although there’s a selection of public cloud solutions available to choose from, many of our customers in Germany have concerns around data sovereignty, particularly with GDPR regulations now in force,” says Holger Böhn, Data Center Manager at AKQUINET. “We wanted to offer a secure, cost-effective, cloud-based data storage platform that would address these concerns.”
To meet customer demand, AKQUINET partnered with Hitachi Vantara to build a hybrid cloud solution based on Hitachi Content Platform (HCP). Having worked with Hitachi since 2012 as a reseller and having gained Cloud Service Provider partner status in 2014, the company found the solution to be an obvious choice. “HCP is an established and mature technology, and we knew it could provide the reliability we needed to deliver exceptional service levels to our customers,” says Böhn.
Known as FlexAS, the platform enables customers to leverage AKQUINET’s private cloud environment, hosted in Germany, with the ability to burst into public cloud resources if needed. “FlexAS offers all the benefits of a public cloud solution but within a private environment,” explains Böhn. “Using industry-standard RESTful API and Amazon S3 protocols, the platform is compatible with all major public cloud offerings, making it easy for customers to migrate workloads.”
While FlexAS is now the basis for many of its customer solutions, the company continues to also provide bespoke systems based on other Hitachi technologies. “Hitachi has very broad reach, with a wide range of best-of-breed technologies,” says Böhn. “By working with Hitachi, we can always find the right solutions to meet our customer’s specifications – whether they’re an SME or large organization.”
Thanks to the partnership with Hitachi Vantara, AKQUINET is already seeing great success with its FlexAS platform. “The hybrid cloud solution improves our capabilities and customer relationships, boosting competitive advantage and profitability,” says Böhn. “It also meets our customers’ needs around security, reliability and compliance.”
In particular, FlexAS simplifies adherence to GDPR regulations by keeping data in Germany and offering the ability to meta tag data to easily search for personally identifiable information. With a straightforward commercial model based solely on the volume of data stored, the platform also helps AKQUINET customers budget more effectively with predictable, transparent costs, within a service catalog.
The partnership between AKQUINET and Hitachi Vantara goes well beyond that of vendor and provider. “We have a strategic and collaborative partnership with Hitachi,” says Böhn. “We’re working together to identify opportunities, go to market with new solutions and services, and ultimately better meet the needs of our customers.”