Published on 27-Oct-2010
Validated on 02 Apr 2012
"Our use of technology is what keeps us ahead of the competition in attracting and retaining customers—and IBM System z is at the heart of that." - Tufan Alatan, Executive Vice President, Garanti Technology
Owned by the Doğuş Group, Garanti Technology is one of the largest IT service providers in Turkey that serves more than 40 companies in its parent group. These companies operate across a broad range of sectors—media, finance, automotive, tourism—and include Garanti Bank, the country's second-largest private bank, with assets of US$78 billion.
With growing numbers of customers, a constant stream of new products and channels, and rising competitive pressure, Garanti Bank needs to deliver fast, reliable banking services 24 hours a day.
More than 200 million transactions are handled daily by two IBM System z10® Enterprise Class servers running IBM z/OS®, IBM DB2® for z/OS and IBM CICS® Transaction Server, with response times averaging 0.06 seconds.
· IBM System z® delivers unparalleled availability and transactional performance, supporting huge transactional volumes · The seamless scalability and compact form-factor of the IBM mainframe supports cost-effective business growth · Mature virtualization capabilities enable System z to flex in response to unpredictable patterns of customer demand
Owned by the Doğuş Group, Garanti Technology is one of the largest IT service providers in Turkey that serves more than 40 companies in its parent group. These companies operate across a broad range of sectors—media, finance, automotive, tourism—and include Garanti Bank, the country's second-largest private bank, with assets of US$78 billion. Garanti Bank has 834 branches, nearly 3,000 ATMs, more than 18,000 employees, and nine million customers, all ultimately supported by Garanti Technology.
Garanti Bank has seen extremely rapid growth in recent years. For example, its income from banking activities grew some 22 percent in 2008 alone. Having restructured significantly after a local financial crisis in 2001, the banking sector in Turkey was less affected than those in other countries by the more recent global financial crisis. Regardless, there are other local challenges for banks, including rising operational costs, increasing competition to attract and retain customers, and reduced margins.
“Technology has underpinned the transformation of the bank over the past 15 years or so,” comments Tufan Alatan, Executive Vice President, Garanti Technology. “Garanti Bank sees technology as an asset, not a liability; as a means of generating new income streams, rather than simply as a cost of business. Our use of technology is what keeps us ahead of the competition in attracting and retaining customers—and IBM System z is at the heart of that.”
Growth powered by technology
Garanti Bank's growth philosophy over the past 15 years has centered around investments in automation, technology and people. In Turkey, the bank has very much set the pace in technology, making extensive use of paperless automation to handle most administrative tasks in an operational center. This provides significant economies of scale, and frees up the remaining branch staff to focus 100 percent on customer service excellence and new business generation.
“The use of central shared services reduces our costs and enables us to invest more time and money in finding new customers and opening up opportunities in new market segments,” says Alatan. “The web is a major growth channel—we have up to 1.2 million unique users on peak days. For Internet banking, you need to offer great service if you want to keep your customers, because competitors are just a click away. We are always looking to improve customer loyalty through continuous improvements in service. The performance, availability and scalability of the mainframe enable us to do that.”
Garanti Technology runs two IBM mainframes for Garanti Bank—both are IBM System z10 Enterprise Class (z10 EC) servers running IBM z/OS. The core banking systems run on IBM Customer Information Control System (CICS) Transaction Server, with all data managed using IBM for z/OS. For high availability, the servers are clustered using IBM Parallel Sysplex® technology. The two z10 EC servers handle more than 200 million transactions on peak days, delivering 0.06s average response times.
“The banking industry is changing fast—for example, more and more people are using mobile phones to service their accounts, and 24/7 banking is now a reality,” says Alatan. “The transaction speed and the availability of IBM System z give us the capability to offer responsive services at all times.”
Low IT costs
Over the past five years, Garanti Technology has roughly tripled the processing capacity of the Garanti Bank mainframe environment, which now stands at 25,000 MIPS. During this time it has also doubled the number of logical partitions (LPARs), using the mature virtualization capabilities of the mainframe to effectively double the number of distinct servers it runs while keeping within the same physical footprint.
“The energy efficiency of the mainframe is an important advantage, but the floorspace is the really critical thing, because there's no easy way to get more floorspace in a data center,” says Alatan. “With IBM System z, we have just two racks that handle hundreds of millions of transactions daily. And within those same racks, we can double, triple, even quadruple the workload.”
The flexibility of the System z platform is also a great advantage for Garanti Bank. To a degree, the bank can control its ATMs and in-branch activities, whereas the Internet is completely open and unpredictable, and demand can rise extremely rapidly. With System z, Garanti Bank can easily add more computing power without any disruption.
“For Garanti Bank, the mainframe also offers extremely low costs per transaction—we believe it to be lower than for any other platform,” says Alatan. “And each time we increase the capacity, the cost per transaction falls. A significant element in that is personnel costs, which are typically the single most costly element in IT operations. Although we've tripled the capacity of our System z environment, the number of staff managing it has remained steady at 40 people. We're doing far more work with the same number of people.”
Garanti Technology is considering moving further workloads into the System z environment, including Garanti Bank's IBM WebSphere® applications, currently running on three IBM Power® 570 servers and will soon start running on a new Power 780 server also, and some of its web-based branch applications.
Says Alatan: “We want to put as many workloads as we can on the mainframe—it gives us a highly robust transactional back end that can interact with any technology we choose for the front end. Over the past 15 years, I can recall perhaps three or four issues on System z, and they were all related to applications, not the system itself. This robustness, and the very strong security, make System z the ideal platform for banking.”
Products and services used
© Copyright IBM Corporation 2010 IBM Systems and Technology Group Route 100 Somers, New York 10589 U.S.A. Produced in the United States of America October 2010 All Rights Reserved IBM, the IBM logo, ibm.com and System z are trademarks of International Business Machines Corporation in the United States, other countries or both. Other company, product and service names may be trademarks or service marks of others. References in this publication to IBM products or services do not imply that IBM intends to make them available in all countries in which IBM operates. ZSC03086-USEN-00