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Mohamed Naser Al-Hajery & Sons set up for Digital Transformation success with Nutanix cloud infrastructure

Mohamed Naser Al-Hajery & Sons set up for Digital Transformation success with Nutanix cloud infrastructure

Case StudiesCloudRetail

One of Kuwait’s largest consumer services groups leverages Nutanix to enhance the performance and availability of digital services and reduce TCO.

Jackson D’Souza, CIO at Mohamed Naser Al-Hajery & Sons

Mohamed Naser Al-Hajery & Sons (MNH) is one of the largest consumer services groups in the state of Kuwait with over 100 brands in the healthcare, FMCG, perfumes, cosmetics and food and beverage segments. 

Migrating to Nutanix ensures the performance and availability of critical digital applications while reducing TCO by nearly 50%. Reduced complexity enables the IT team to refocus efforts on high-value initiatives that drive business outcomes.

Challenge

IT is the enabler of smooth operations for the over 100 leading brands that MNH operates under its four distinct lines of business.

“In addition to a resource-intensive ERP, we have several vertical-specific applications that enable everything from customer service and order booking to inventory management and delivery tracking,” said Jackson D’Souza, CIO at MNH. 

To ensure the performance and availability of these critical services, MNH invested in a hyper-converged infrastructure (HCI) solution which despite being from a leading vendor, had several shortcomings that impacted the smooth operations of its various lines of business. 

“Once during planned shutdown, it took three hours to restore our systems. As a 24/7 operation with so many retail outlets, every minute of downtime translates to lost sales, frustrated customers and a direct impact on revenues,” D’Souza added. “We were convinced HCI was the solution but we needed the support of the best provider in the market.”

Solution

Having received an overwhelming number of positive reviews for Nutanix from his regional peers, the decision was clear to D’Souza. 

“Initially, our intention was to only deploy Nutanix in our main data centre, but after experiencing the incredible ease of deployment and use during the POC, we immediately expanded the scope to include our DR site as well.”

“The cost benefits were also impressive, with our estimates showing the TCO with Nutanix to be 60% less than the offering from our previous partner,” said D’Souza.

While it had taken their incumbent vendor six months to deploy the HCI solution in the main data centre alone, MNH needed just a month to deploy Nutanix at both sites and migrate all applications to the new environment. All the group’s core services, as well as its vertical-specific business applications run on Nutanix.

Customer outcome

Simplicity stands out

“Previously, we had to manage solutions from multiple vendors which meant dealing with complex licensing, engaging with multiple teams for support and inevitably navigating finger-pointing when things went wrong,” D’Souza said. “With Nutanix, we have a single vendor we trust and this gives us the confidence to scale without constraints, added costs or risk.”

This simplicity has also translated to an ability for D’Souza to refocus his team’s time and efforts on innovation. 

“We have a dedicated infrastructure manager and whereas before, he would spend all his time in managing our environment, this aspect of his workload has been dramatically reduced since we migrated to Nutanix. I’ve therefore been able to assign him to other projects that drive business outcomes.” 

Performance exceeds expectations

Offering an example of how Nutanix has untethered his IT team from the constraints imposed by the performance limitations of their previous HCI solution, D’Souza added: “Due to latency issues, we were unable to upgrade our mission-critical core ERP system to the latest version and take advantage of the new features that could streamline our operations and enhance customer experiences. But with Nutanix, we can run even this tremendously resource-hungry workload with no performance issues at all.”

D’Souza estimates that Nutanix’s solution will meet his organisation’s requirements for the next four years at the very least. “And this is all while enabling us to use the excess capacity at our DR site as a test environment. Because we can spin up VMs with little to no effort, Nutanix serves as a test bed for us to rapidly test new applications that we can then confidently roll out to our employees and customers.”

Reliability instils confidence

With Nutanix deployed in its Disaster Recovery site, MNH now enjoys a near-zero RPO and a significant enhancement to RTO. 

“Previously, a complete restore would take up to 24 hours from our Disaster Recovery site to our main data centre. In comparison, Nutanix achieves the same in under five minutes”, said D’Souza. “Given the scale of our operations, and the volume of customer enquiries and sales we service every minute, having the capability to recover from any down time within a few minutes justifies our investment.”

Moreover, citing an example of how the rapid, proactive support from Nutanix ensures it is ‘Business as usual’ even when things do go wrong, D’Souza said: “We once had a node go down in our DR site due to a process being corrupted. Nutanix’s remote support team identified and diagnosed the issue before we even raised a ticket, and within just three days, we had a new node installed without need for intervention by my team, or any impact on our operations.”

Next steps

“We’ve been incredibly impressed by the speed of deployment, performance and ease of use of Nutanix. Consequently, we are now in the process of replicating this success and implementing Nutanix for our two sister companies – Greenfields Agriculture and Hydrotek Engineering,” said D’Souza.

As per the compliance requirements of some of its partner brands, MNH is required to backup data and applications to the cloud. “This is another area that we’re exploring as we are keen to leverage our Nutanix Cloud Infrastructure to facilitate backups to Microsoft Azure.”

“We expect MNH to continue its expansion through strategic investments and acquisitions. Usually, the consolidation of IT systems associated with such activities introduce IT complexity,” D’Souza added. “But given how easy app migration is on the Nutanix Cloud Infrastructure, my team and I are confident we can effortlessly support these needs of the business as it continues to grow.”

“In my experience, it is the perfect combination of market-leading technology, with highly-dedicated local expertise that makes Nutanix such a capable and reliable Digital Transformation partner,” D’Souza concluded.

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