A regional cooperative bank prepares for aggressive growth

Investing in the future with a scalable modular data center from IBM

Published on 12-Feb-2013

"The scalable modular data center is good for our organization. It is easily maintainable, so there is no need for experts to oversee the environment. And we don’t require any outside consulting when we need to expand." - Deputy chief information officer, a regional cooperative bank

Customer:
A regional cooperative bank

Industry:
Banking

Overview

Founded in 1917, this regional cooperative bank caters to local farming communities in India. “Our banks are located in rural areas and are agriculture-focused,” explains the bank’s deputy chief information officer (CIO). “In 1993, we had only eight branches, but we now have a network of 48 branches, and we are planning to spread to 60 branches by 2013.”

Business need:
A regional cooperative bank in India sought a solution to increase its flexibility and streamline IT operations and management tasks as well as support new business growth and service delivery initiatives.

Solution:
IBM® Global Technology Services® – Integrated Technology Services consolidated the bank’s architecture into scalable modular primary and disaster recovery data centers that optimize the infrastructure and manage risk and security.

Benefits:
The standardized IT infrastructure and operations helped decrease IT costs by 75 percent while facilitating 35 percent to 45 percent annual revenue growth through new customer services and acquisition integration.

Case Study

Founded in 1917, this regional cooperative bank caters to local farming communities in India. “Our banks are located in rural areas and are agriculture-focused,” explains the bank’s deputy chief information officer (CIO). “In 1993, we had only eight branches, but we now have a network of 48 branches, and we are planning to spread to 60 branches by 2013.”

Limiting growth potential with limited IT

The bank’s growth plans, however, were restricted by its decentralized IT architecture. Each branch used independent business processes, and the batch processing used to integrate information slowed the bank’s ability to share data across locations.

“We didn’t have a core banking technology,” explains the deputy CIO. “We wanted to start offering new services such as mobile banking and Internet banking, but the technology was not in place.” Recognizing that it needed a consolidated data center environment as well as an integrated core banking architecture for its business to continue to grow, the bank began evaluating service providers that would help with the task.

Choosing the right solution

The bank previously worked with IBM, and after considering proposals from several vendors, it quickly realized that IBM offered the ideal solution. The architectural design, hardware solutions and services proposed by IBM Global Technology Services – Integrated Technology Services provided a superior coverage level for the primary and remote locations across the bank’s organization. IBM also had a good record with the bank. “We had been pleased with the service that they offered, and their servers were still performing well,” says the deputy CIO.

Under a Global Technology Services contract, IBM provided the business with a 46 sq m scalable modular data center at its main office in the southwest region of India. The data center is a prefabricated environment designed to support high-density computing solutions and can be easily expanded with standardized, modular units. These environments can be rolled out more quickly than traditional data centers.

Over a five-week rollout, the IBM staff configured the data center to contain six server racks, three of which are filled with 12 IBM BladeCenter® servers running a Linux operating environment. These systems now host the bank’s new core banking, Internet and mobile banking services and ATM systems. “IBM servers, storage and other devices implemented improved our processing speed, reliability and uptime,” says the deputy CIO. To protect these new services, the bank wanted to encourage a high level of availability in the underlying architecture. It established a disaster recovery site that would support its operations in the event of an outage at its primary facility. The IBM project team deployed an identical scalable modular data center environment at a bank facility 16 km from the client’s headquarters.

Empowering enhanced service capabilities and growth

With its new streamlined IT operating environment in place, the bank offers the quality and types of services that its customers expect. “We are now getting in touch with the desires of our customers,” explains the deputy CIO. “Now we offer mobile, Internet and interbranch banking. And we can roll out new services more quickly.” The bank can exploit these new offerings to draw in new accounts and expand its existing services. Adds the deputy CIO: “With these additional customers, we can lend more money into the market, leaving us with higher profits.”

In fact, this ability to support rapid growth was a major reason the business chose the IBM core banking transformation solution. Historically, the bank relied on an acquisitions-based growth strategy and continues these efforts. As the deputy CIO explains, “There are multiple acquisitions going on in the corporate sector here in India. Thanks to IBM, we can acquire banks and other businesses more easily. And this capability will help in growing our business.” For example, the company successfully put its new capabilities to the test when it acquired another midsize bank. Using the new infrastructure, the bank smoothly managed its increased processing requirements and customer service support without the need for additional data center space.

Securing a favorable return

Since implementing its enhanced services delivery and operations transformation, the bank has achieved 35 percent to 45 percent growth per year. In addition, by teaming with IBM, the bank expects to save almost 75 percent of its IT support costs with the more efficient design and simplified management of the newly consolidated IT environment. “The scalable modular data center is good for our organization,” explains the deputy CIO. “It is easily maintainable, so there is no need for experts to oversee the environment. And we don’t require any outside consulting when we need to expand.” In fact, the bank’s use of innovative IT solutions helped it earn a reputation for best practices among India’s cooperative banks. “The bank has achieved new business growth through its IT strategy, and now we have become a bright example for others to follow,” the deputy CIO continues. “There are large cooperative banks in cities like Kolkata, Kolhapur and Solapur, yet they come to see our [IBM] technology [solution] and how it is being used.”

For more information

To learn more about the scalable modular data center solution, please contact your IBM marketing representative or IBM Business Partner, or visit the following website: ibm.com/services/siteandfacilities

© Copyright IBM Corporation 2013

Products and services used

IBM products and services that were used in this case study.

Hardware:
BladeCenter

Service:
GTS ITS Site & Facilities: IT Facilities Assess/Design/Constr

Legal Information

IBM Corporation Global Technology Services Route 100 Somers, NY 10589 Produced in the United States of America January 2013 IBM, the IBM logo, ibm.com, Global Technology Services, and BladeCenter are trademarks of International Business Machines Corp., registered in many jurisdictions worldwide. Other product and service names might be trademarks of IBM or other companies. A current list of IBM trademarks is available on the web at “Copyright and trademark information” at ibm.com/legal/copytrade.shtml Linux is a registered trademark of Linus Torvalds in the United States, other countries, or both. This document is current as of the initial date of publication and may be changed by IBM at any time. Not all offerings are available in every country in which IBM operates. The client examples cited are presented for illustrative purposes only. Actual performance results may vary depending on specific configurations and operating conditions. THE INFORMATION IN THIS DOCUMENT IS PROVIDED “AS IS” WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING WITHOUT ANY WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY, FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE AND ANY WARRANTY OR CONDITION OF NON-INFRINGEMENT. IBM products are warranted according to the terms and conditions of the agreements under which they are provided.