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Flinth Industrial Park creates a robust Private Cloud based on Microsoft Virtualization Solution

“The virtualization solution from Microsoft fitted into the structure of our industrial park and we realized that it was the solution we needed. It goes hand in hand with the vision of our industrial park and enables us to reach new dimensions of integrated support service provision” Joachim Johansson, Managing Director of Flinth Industrial Park.

Flinth Industrial Park, a path breaking business venture that provides comprehensive support services to leading global and local manufacturing companies, has placed its confidence on a Microsoft virtualization solution to run its dynamic IT infrastructure in order to meet the requirements of a multi-tenant industrial environment.

Flinth industrial Park, a fully owned subsidiary of the Swedish based holding company Swedcord Development AB and launched in 2010, is a unique business venture that provides infrastructure amenities and integrated support services for manufacturing firms to set up production plants and factories within their industrial park located in Kadawatha. The Founder Chairman of the park is Rune Flinth, a Swedish businessman who developed the concept through his own 40 year experience as an entrepreneur and businessman. At the moment they house eight leading manufacturing firms who base their central production divisions at the Flinth Industrial Park in Ranmuthugala Estate, Kadawatha. Strategically situated in close proximity to the business hub in Colombo as well as to the airport and Colombo port, Flinth provides facilities required by these companies for their operations and production.

Flinth Industrial Park aims at providing the complete environment for demanding manufacturing firms when it comes to premises, services, administrative support and training of employees. The package of services offered by the Park includes finance and accounting, human resource management, training center, IT systems and support services, supply chain management, quality management, facilities management and administrative support, corporate communications and legal advice.

It facilitates companies such as AeroSense, Cable Solutions, Harness Solutions, Prime Packaging, Quality Floors, CaviTool, Swedlanka and Metal Component Services, all of which are primarily involved in production and in exporting to various parts of the world. Given the critical importance of maintaining smooth business operations and production cycles of each of these organizations, the Flinth Industrial Park, being both service and facilities supplier, needed a robust IT system. This is where the infrastructure virtualization solution provided by Microsoft came into operation.

Implemented using Windows Server 2008 R2 with Hyper-V and System Center, a consolidated server environment or a Private Cloud for cost efficiency and reliable business continuity was created to suit their unique multi-tenant environment. The private cloud solution being used gives Flinth Industrial Park the ability to scale and shape their own IT environment and provides the agility to address their tenant’s requirements faster. The dynamic and robust Server virtualization is the foundation for building a Microsoft private cloud, which allows customers such as Flinth Industrial Park to enjoy the key benefits of cloud computing. The dynamic and scalable capabilities of Windows Server helped create this with ease and a single set of management tools built in System Center enables the management of both physical and virtual resources centrally.

The solution ensures that the eight companies housed at the park do not have to invest their money in maintaining their own servers to facilitate diverse business requirements. Instead, it creates one virtualised central platform which technically incorporates severs of all tenants. Therefore, the IT solution provided by Microsoft minimizes hardware requirements, yielding significant cost and time saving. With reduced energy consumption the Industrial Park is able to reduce their carbon footprint which is an important criterion for their business model. In addition, it creates a simplified platform that can enhance the efficacy and effectiveness of servers used by tenant companies of the Park.

One key benefit of this Virtualized environment created with Windows Server with Hyper-V is improved security and high level of service availability. In this type of industrial or manufacturing set up, this holds major importance in order to reduce the impact of disruptions to their mission critical production processes and to ensure business continuity. Furthermore, this provides their IT administrators the ability to streamline maintenance and disaster recovery to maximize system availability and ensure smooth business operations for their clients. The result is minimized “down-times” that affect mission critical applications of each manufacturing firm.

“Some tenants of our park have very critical production operations. For instance, AeroSense, one of our tenants, develops and manufactures devices based on transducer technology for the aerospace industry. As such, they will never want to waste their time on server issues and other infrastructural problems. When running the industrial park and hosting eight tenants who have very crucial and unique production operations, we need to take all this into consideration,” said Joachim Johansson, Managing Director of the Flinth Industrial Park.

“That is why we stepped into an agreement with Microsoft for a complete data centre Virtualization project. It fitted into the structure of our industrial park and, hand in hand with our vision, enables us to reach new dimensions of integrated support service provision. We want our tenants to focus solely on their core business of manufacturing and sales. We, as an integrated part of their business operation, take care of the infrastructure and other facilities. In the same way, we cannot afford to have any down-times of servers which critically and adversely affect our tenants operations. If we do not perform on our part of the deliverables, the park companies will not be able to achieve their goals in terms of production and sales. Most of our tenants have already achieved international quality standards in their respective field and therefore we are compelled to provide them with corresponding service levels.

With this solution, I must say, a lot of risks have been mitigated and a strong platform has been created. Having said that, I must also note that one needs a solid IT team internally to implement, maintain and further develop an IT solution of this nature.” the Managing Director said. Microsoft specialized partner N-Able Private Limited was instrumental in designing and building the cloud architecture in close collaboration with the customer and managed the transition process successfully.

Harsha Randeny, Partner Technology Advisor of Microsoft Sri Lanka, who consulted Flinth Industrial Park in implementing this private cloud solution, said that “Windows Server is a product that many global companies have relied upon in running their complex data centres. In Sri Lanka too, we have a number of organizations who use Windows Server Data Centre along with the System Centre management suit to seamlessly manage their infrastructure networks. With the added capabilities built in to the latest version of Windows Server 2012, Flinth IT team will enjoy the benefit of having the most advanced datacentre in a private cloud environment” he said.

Speaking about the platform, IT Manager of Flinth Industrial Park Chulani Nalaka said the solution has streamlined the IT operations of the industrial park to a great extent. “When eight unique companies operate in the industrial park, you need to ensure many things such as air-conditioning, uninterrupted power supply, security and maintenance. With Microsoft Virtualization, we have been able to design one central multitenant server set up that meets the requirements of all tenants. It also has the capacity to host more tenants who will be joining the industrial park in the future, which gives the flexibility to scale our business. This is, in my view, the ideal solution for a unique business venture such as the Flinth Industrial Park,” he added.

Flinth Industrial Park is an example of how a unique business model, which caters to diverse requirements of different organizations can be met using the latest technology. With the concept of Cloud computing sweeping all industries and businesses of all sizes, this provides an illustration of how a company can create, own and manage their business in the Cloud on their own terms.

Flinth Industrial Park is situated in Ranmuthugala Estate, Kadawatha.

Flinth Industrial Park is situated in Ranmuthugala Estate, Kadawatha.

Joachim Johansson, Managing Director of Flinth Industrial Park

Joachim Johansson, Managing Director of Flinth Industrial Park