Freudenberg IT delivers SAP HANA services with Lenovo

Overview
Freudenberg IT (FIT) serves hundreds of clients with hosted SAP HANA solutions. When a client’s business needs change, being able to scale easily and cost-effectively is critical. FIT is delivering hosted solutions based on flexible, scalable Lenovo Solution for SAP HANA appliances at significantly reduced operational costs.
 
“FIT and Lenovo will give our clients the most cost-effective, scalable SAP HANA platforms, with the ability to scale up or scale out to meet their business needs.”
 —Chris Spruell,
VP of Enterprise Architecture,
Freudenberg IT America
 
Solution components
Hardware
Lenovo Solution for SAP HANA running on Lenovo x3850 X6 and x3950 X6 servers with Intel® Xeon® E7 family of processors
 
Software
SAP HANA
SUSE Linux Enterprise Server
IBM Spectrum Scale
 
Services
Lenovo Installation Services
 
“FIT and Lenovo have the answer with our hosted SAP and SAP HANA environments, and we plan to make the FIT and Lenovo partnership even tighter to serve our clients’ needs.”
 —Eric Fitzpatrick,
Vice President of Sales,
Freudenberg IT America
 
“As SAP continues to develop its in-memory system architecture, FIT and Lenovo will give our clients the most cost-effective, scalable SAP HANA platforms, with the ability to scale up or scale out to meet their changing business needs.”
 —Chris Spruell,
VP of Enterprise Architecture,
Freudenberg IT America
 
Freudenberg IT (FIT) is an international provider of managed services, specializing in mission-critical hosting capabilities across the globe using its world-class FIT-owned data centers. As an SAP-certified global provider of hosting and cloud services with more than 35 years of experience running and hosting SAP, FIT is recognized as a strategic partner and top-tier hosting provider within the SAP ecosystem.
 
Users of SAP ERP solutions often collect huge quantities of transactional data in data warehouses for later analysis and mining. SAP HANA, a transformative in-memory database technology, provides the ability to deliver near-real-time analytics, even on very large datasets. SAP HANA can provide reporting capabilities that return answers in a fraction of the time previously required, and for this reason many FIT clients are busy implementing SAP HANA solutions. 


Investing in SAP HANA solutions
For each hosting client, FIT invests in the necessary server infrastructure and is responsible for administration, maintenance and support. This model removes the client’s need for capital expenditure and allows them to focus on exploiting the maximum possible value from SAP applications and SAP HANA solutions.
 
Eric Fitzpatrick, Vice President of Sales at FIT America, explains, “We advise clients on their selection of the right-size SAP HANA appliance, bearing in mind that their business might grow or change dramatically. Finding the best possible SAP HANA platform for our clients involves a complex mix of factors: the initial equipment cost, funded by FIT; the ongoing hosting fees; and the future scaling possibilities and costs.
 
“Early on, many vendors’ SAP HANA appliance offerings were physically very large, with external switches and disk arrays to support the Storage Area Network (SAN) that SAP HANA needs for scale-out systems. These systems occupied significant data center rack space, impacting our own cost-efficiency and, by extension, the hosting fees we could offer to our clients. What’s more, many of the appliances were very costly to purchase and operate.
 
“Finally, if a client needed to grow its SAP HANA capacity, they were faced with significant cost, often because the only route was to discard the initial system and deploy an all-new, larger appliance. Even when it was technically possible to expand the original solution, the cost of upgrading the external switches and SAN was sometimes higher than a new deployment.”
 
Feeling the squeeze from success
As adoption of SAP HANA accelerated, FIT appreciated that more clients would likely be affected by scalability issues. Similarly, FIT realized that adding physically large systems would soon place pressure on data center space, power and cooling, which would affect its ability to expand its SAP HANA user base.
 
Looking for more cost-efficient, scalable solutions, FIT discovered the Lenovo Solution for SAP HANA based on Lenovo X6 mission-critical servers.
 
Eric Fitzpatrick says, “The Lenovo Solution for SAP HANA appliances are designed in a modular fashion, enabling rapid and cost-effective scale-out by little more than adding and integrating a second appliance. With no external SAN to reconfigure, FIT is able to help clients manage growth much more cost-effectively on Lenovo appliances, both in scale-up and scale-out situations.
 
X6 mission critical servers are powered by the Intel® Xeon® E7 family of processors and leverage Intel® Hyper-Threading Technology for extreme scale and performance within each node, as well as Intel® Transactional Synchronization Extensions to help improve performance of transactional in-memory database processing on systems. Advanced RAS features, such as predictive failure analysis, light path diagnostics, and hot swap components, provide high availability and maximum up-time for business-critical SAP HANA applications. A modular design enables simple servicing of the system and ongoing investment protection with the ability to upgrade through multiple processor generations.
 
Eric Fitzpatrick continues, “IBM Spectrum Scale technology removes the need for an external switch and disk array, and cuts costs. Lenovo Solution for SAP HANA appliances contain all the components required for a complete SAP HANA instance, and the appliances occupy significantly less rack space than our previous vendor’s offering for equivalent SAP HANA computing power, memory, and storage, particularly in scale-out scenarios.
“Additionally, because every client requires three SAP HANA environments – development, test and production – the savings available with Lenovo are multiplied threefold.”
 
Chris Spruell, VP of Enterprise Architecture at FIT America, comments, “The challenge is that no one knows exactly how their business will look in five years. Clients trust FIT to make the right infrastructure choice for them, and the flexibility offered by Lenovo’s modular approach to SAP HANA creates many more possible options. In many cases, when workload rises, a client’s SAP HANA environment can be scaled up simply through the addition of a modular compute books or additional memory and storage, at much lower cost than a complete system replacement and downtime.
 
“To add to the mix, when we compare Lenovo solutions against those of other vendors, Lenovo SAP HANA appliances are significantly less expensive. The combination of flexibility, cost-effective scaling and commercially attractive pricing makes for a very compelling offer.”
 
Solving clients’ SAP HANA challenges
The success of the partnership between Freudenberg IT and Lenovo is only growing stronger as witnessed by continuing FIT purchases of additional appliances.
 
FIT purchases the Lenovo infrastructure and bears the capital expenditure cost – as Chris Spruell puts it: “Our clients’ CFOs love us!” This model removes the capex from FIT’s clients, allowing them to operationally expense the hosting subscription. The Lenovo SAP HANA appliances’ lower capital cost relative to other vendors and iterative scalability are huge advantages, enabling FIT to offer very competitive pricing for its hosting solutions. As a result, the Lenovo SAP HANA solutions are proving very popular with clients in terms of reliability and scalability.
 
Eric Fitzpatrick comments, “If you want to run SAP solutions, including SAP HANA, but do not want to run them yourself, FIT and Lenovo have the answer with our hosted SAP application and SAP HANA environments, and we plan to make the FIT and Lenovo partnership even tighter to serve our clients’ needs.”
 
Chris Spruell concludes, “For FIT, the Lenovo Solution for SAP HANA appliances offer a compact physical form-factor that helps us optimize our data center utilization, with increased density and reduced costs for energy and cooling. The lean operating costs and significantly lower capital costs offered by Lenovo technology help FIT create great SAP HANA hosting solutions. As SAP continues to develop its in-memory system architecture, FIT and Lenovo will give our clients the most cost-effective, scalable SAP HANA platforms, with the ability to scale up or scale out to meet their changing business needs.”
 
For more information
To learn more about Lenovo Data Center Systems solutions, contact your Lenovo Sales Representative or Lenovo Business Partner, or visit: lenovo.com/systems
 
For more information about the Lenovo Solution for SAP HANA, visit: www.lenovo.com/sap/hana
 
For more information about SAP, visit: sap.com or connect with @SAP
 
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