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Posted: 12/14/2012
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Kordia Group Limited Kordia Boosts Performance by up to 30 Percent and Supports Rapid Business Growth

Based in New Zealand, Kordia provides telecommunications services to a growing number of customers. The company had performance and stability problems with the database supporting its critical SAP business intelligence (BI) system. To address that challenge, Kordia implemented a solution based on Microsoft SQL Server 2012, which has improved performance by up to 30 percent and reduced backup times by 80 percent. The company can now keep up with rapid business growth and is better positioned to expand its BI system.


Business Needs

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* Our growth is really astronomical right now. With the new SQL Server 2012 solution, we have the space and performance we need to handle that growth. *

Hannes Van Zyl
CIO
Kordia

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Kordia is a growing telecommunications and media company that provides network and technology solutions to customers in New Zealand and Australia. Founded more than 60 years ago in Auckland, New Zealand, Kordia is one of the country’s leading providers of television and radio facilities, and it has the third-largest carrier network in the country.

To get ahead in the marketplace, Kordia relies heavily on technology. “We are in a very competitive industry, and companies like ours need to use technology in an innovative way to succeed,” says Gavin Martin, Application Development Manager, Kordia. One of the company’s primary technology solutions is a SAP BW business intelligence (BI) system that is used by the CEO and other executives to get detailed analytical reports.

But increasingly, the BI system was at the mercy of a database plagued by performance and stability issues. “Our database was not optimized for a BI environment,” Martin says. “It lacked compression, column-store table-partitioning functionality, and other features that could improve performance.” As a result, it would take a Kordia manager 10 minutes to generate a report that should have taken 10 seconds to run. “Our CEO couldn’t get the detailed business analysis he needed fast enough to make business decisions,” says Hannes Van Zyl, CIO, Kordia. “That had a major impact on our ability to keep up with business growth.”

In December 2011, Kordia decided to search for a new database solution to support its BI system and other SAP modules for finance, purchasing, and materials management.

Solution

To find the right solution, Kordia engaged Tango Group, a New Zealand technology partner that specializes in SAP systems.

Tango, which had worked with Kordia since 2010, suggested that Kordia migrate its SAP environment to a new database based on Microsoft SQL Server 2012 Enterprise software. “We had used Microsoft technologies for many years, and so we were excited about SQL Server,” says Martin. “It was good to see that advanced features in SQL Server 2012 such as page compression, backup compression, and column store and table partitioning are seamlessly integrated into SAP BW. We knew it would be the right fit for us.”

In early 2012, Tango assisted Kordia in migrating its complete SAP environment to SQL Server 2012, running on the Windows Server 2008 R2 Enterprise operating system. The new solution supports 19 databases. “Tango followed the standard SAP System Copy procedure to migrate the SAP ECC, BI, and EP systems from the UNIX platform to SQL Server 2012,” says Grant McPherson, Head of Technology, Tango Group.

Kordia is taking advantage of data compression in SQL Server 2012, which uses page compression for all the company’s data and indexes. As a result, the SAP ECC and BW environments were compressed in excess of 50 percent, and the firm’s total database size has been reduced from 2 terabytes to 1.5 terabytes. Kordia is also using backup compression in SQL Server 2012 to reduce backup times for all databases. More than 800 Kordia employees now use SAP modules supported by SQL Server 2012. The firm plans to expand the solution to include SQL Server 2012 Reporting Services.

Benefits

Using SQL Server 2012, Kordia has achieved up to 30 percent faster performance and an 80 percent reduction in database backup times. Users have faster access to reports, and the company can better handle its business growth. The organization can also expand its BI system.

Boosts Performance by up to 30 Percent

With the help of data compression in SQL Server 2012, Kordia has reduced processing times by up to 70 percent, cut its database size to 1.5 terabytes, and increased the effectiveness of database input-output. “With SQL Server 2012 data compression, we have seen up to 30 percent faster system performance overall,” says Van Zyl. “Analytical reports can be created in seconds instead of minutes, and SAP users are less frustrated.”

Reduces Backup Times by 80 Percent

SQL Server 2012 backup compression has greatly reduced the time it takes for Kordia to back up data from its core SAP systems and move it into the BI environment. “Previously, that overnight process could take seven hours,” says Martin. “With SQL Server 2012, it only takes us 90 minutes. It no longer encroaches on our normal business hours, which was happening more and more.”

Supports Rapid Business Growth

Because the new database solution can input and extract customer data faster than before, Kordia now has quick access to updated sales and customer data. “With SQL Server 2012, our CEO and other senior leaders have access to near-real-time data, and they can make faster and stronger operational decisions,” says Van Zyl. “Previously, they were limited in their ability to do that, because of the shortcomings of the system.”

Those capabilities will help Kordia expand its business. “Our growth is really astronomical right now. With the new SQL Server 2012 solution, we have the space and performance we need to handle that growth,” says Van Zyl. “Along with the performance improvements we’ve gained, this solution gives us what we need to respond to customers faster.”

Increases Stability, Helps Kordia Expand BI Environment

The new solution’s stability and increased disk space will give Kordia more confidence in the reliability of its systems. “We used to have several instances each month where the BI system was not accessible to the business,” says Martin. “That problem has now been eliminated.”

Improved stability and performance will also assist Kordia as it expands its BI environment. “We were the first company in New Zealand to migrate its SAP environment to SQL Server 2012, and this solution will give us an opportunity to do BI on SAP in a way that was impossible previously,” says Van Zyl. “Now we can really focus on expanding our BI system, which will lead our business as we move into the future.”

This case study is for informational purposes only. MICROSOFT MAKES NO WARRANTIES, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, IN THIS SUMMARY.
Solution Overview



Organization Size: 770 employees

Organization Profile

Kordia is a leading provider of telecommunications services to customers in New Zealand, Australia, and Southeast Asia. The firm has 30 offices in New Zealand and Australia.


Software and Services
Microsoft SQL Server 2012

Vertical Industries
Communications and Network Service Providers

Country/Region
New Zealand

Business Need
Business Intelligence and Reporting

Languages
English

Partner(s)
Tango Group

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