Making a Move to the Cloud
Lowell is one of Europe’s largest credit management companies. Their mission is to make credit work better for all. It operates in the UK, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Denmark, Norway, Finland, and Sweden. Headquartered in Leeds, UK, it currently employs 4,500 people across Europe. Lowell’s unparalleled combination of data analytics insight and robust risk management provides clients with expert solutions in debt purchasing, third-party collections, and business process outsourcing.
Recently, its Lowell Service Center GmbH, based in Germany, made the decision to move both its primary production and secondary disaster recovery (DR) data centers to an infrastructure as a service (IaaS) model, utilizing the managed service provider (MSP) Vodafone. Its goal was to leverage Vodafone’s cloud-based infrastructure resources to build and manage its data storage and overall IT infrastructure. As a result, the Lowell Service Center would be able to control its own data infrastructure, without having to physically manage it onsite.
In addition, by utilizing Vodafone’s IaaS, the Lowell Service Center would have the flexibility to purchase only the storage and server resources they specifically required to support current business and IT initiatives, without needing to buy, build, and manage the entire infrastructure onsite.
Vodafone’s IaaS services and elasticity would not only save the Lowell Service Center a great deal of management time, but significant budget as well, especially in terms of the cost avoidance related to new hardware and software licenses.
Meeting the Migration Challenge with DobiMigrate
The challenge became how best to migrate all of its data – 1,000 servers and 100 TBs, which were stored across its primary production data center in Essen and its DR data center in Gelsenkirchen – to the Frankfurt-based Vodafone data centers.
“Our initial goal was to migrate 64 TBs of warm archive data and 35 TBs of production data from our production data center to Frankfurt. It was critical that the solution we chose be able to verify that all of the contextual and relational information remain intact and not be changed in any way. For instance, retention time absolutely couldn’t be altered,” said Martin Gregor, Lead Engineer Technical Services DACH, Lowell Service Center GmbH. “As most data management professionals understand, a warm data transfer can be very difficult. But, for both business and regulatory compliance reasons, this wasn’t an area in which there could be any level of compromise.”
Gregor was already familiar with Datadobi’s enterprise-class NAS migration software, DobiMigrate®, and trusted it, having successfully used it at a previous employer for data migrations between both national and international data centers. However, in order to comply with due diligence practices, he also reviewed competitors. The comparison confirmed what he already knew: Datadobi would enable his organization to transition to its new storage environment quickly and safely, at a far superior price.
The Bottom Line
Gregor and his team were able to migrate 100 TBs of data in under eight weeks. Since that time, they have been replicating deltas every 24 hours from the primary data center to Frankfurt.
“Bottom line, we were able to enjoy a fast and significant ROI because of Datadobi,” concluded Gregor. “DobiMigrate enabled a streamlined migration to the Vodafone IaaS data centers. And, now that we don’t have to worry about day-to-day IT infrastructure management in our previous onsite production and DR data centers, we can focus our professional team on strategic business activities, such as bringing products and services to market more quickly, and enhancing the customer experience.”
The next step, currently underway, is to employ DobiMigrate to move data from other various smaller data centers spread across Germany to the new data centers in Frankfurt.