Seamless Cloud Migration Opens New Opportunities for Property Developer
Seamless Cloud Migration Opens New Opportunities for Property Developer
United Arab Emirates
Our client is a premier property developer, providing prime real estate management services in Abu Dhabi. Specializing in residential, retail, office, and hospitality sectors, the company aligns its operations with the nation’s growth and sustainability goals.
From conceptualization to execution, the company is dedicated to quality and excellence – boasting an impressive portfolio, encompassing residential, commercial, retail, and hospitality landmarks.
But, in striving to ensure its projects are dynamic while also prioritizing the preservation of Abu Dhabi’s rich culture and traditions, the client needs a technology platform that is reliable and that delivers access to cutting-edge technology tools.
In a changing property market, agility and speed to market are top priorities – but these objectives were difficult to achieve using the on-premise solution that the company depended on.
The clients’ infrastructure relied heavily on physical hardware which was prone to failure and downtime. It became increasingly of concern as post-COVID delays in hardware delivery meant delivery timelines of 5 to 12 months.
“Delays in acquiring hardware also meant that our team couldn’t scale operations quite as quickly as we wanted to, which sometimes meant delaying strategic objectives by as much as 12 months.” – said their IT Manager.
That starkly contrasted with the opportunities on offer when using cloud infrastructure, where new deployments could be rolled out almost instantly. The company’s on-premise solution prevented their team from scaling its technology solution to keep up with and surpass competitors – but the fact that cloud operations offered enhanced security was also a factor.
With a clear case for cloud migration, the client performed an intensive vendor analysis. They needed a vendor that could perform a challenging migration of web application firewall (WAF) policies because many of their applications depended on an intricate set of rules to function. Their partner of choice also needed to migrate a key legacy application.
After receiving a strong recommendation from Amazon Web Services (AWS), the company decided to partner with Bespin Global.
Switching to cloud-based computing presented a unique challenge for the clients’ technology team, but by working closely with Bespin Global, the team quickly started the process of determining the optimal structure and organization of the cloud environment.
“We recommended that the customer move existing workloads to the UAE region of AWS, leveraging AWS landing zone best practices and multi-account structure” – according to Mahmoud Abdelrahman, DevOps Engineer at Bespin Global.
For networking, Bespin Global implemented two key AWS services:
- Amazon Virtual Private Cloud (VPC) for full control over virtual networking, including resource placement, connectivity, and security. It involved setting up a VPC, adding resources like EC2 and RDS instances, and defining inter-VPC communication across accounts.
- AWS Transit Gateway as a network transit hub to establish a connection between the customers on-premises networks and Amazon VPCs, simplifying the management of network infrastructure through a hub-and-spoke model and eliminating the need for complex peering arrangements.
- AWS Site-to-Site VPN to secure the connection between the clients’ on-premises resources and AWS cloud resources, including an accelerated option for globally distributed applications.
Naturally, the client had a few concerns about moving their entire technology estate into the cloud in one go. “We were concerned about the potential for incompatibilities to emerge between on-prem workloads and cloud infrastructure.” – said the IT Manager.
Here, Bespin Global applied AWS Application Migration Service to automate and assure the conversion of source servers to run natively on AWS. That included installing the MGN Agent on on-premises servers, initiating sync, launching test instances, and marking servers as Ready for Cutover.
The company’s Legacy DC Firewall proved no problem as the Bespin team effectively migrated all the required rules and policies to the AWS Web Application Firewall, which meant that all the communication flows needed continued to flow uninterrupted – and securely.
One challenge did come up. Their legacy ERP application had a license tied to a physical server, and the license couldn’t be transferred to a cloud-hosted virtual machine. Nonetheless, Bespin’s applications team found a creative solution to “lift and shift” the ERP system, with license in place, seamlessly moving ERP functionality to the cloud.
Additionally, since the initial Proof of Concept (POC) for migrating Windows File Share servers to Amazon FSx for Windows File Share proved unsatisfactory, Bespin developed two new approaches to match the client team’s expectation.
With Bespin’s best practices and frameworks already in place, our clients’ transition to the cloud proceeded without a hitch, reflecting the robustness of the solution provided by Bespin.
“We wanted to ensure that their new cloud workloads benefit from maximum security protection afforded under AWS”, said Mahmoud. Bespin implemented three key AWS services to achieve security objectives:
- Amazon GuardDuty as a threat detection service to continuously monitor and protect client AWS accounts and applications.
- AWS Security Hub acting as a cloud security posture management that performs security checks, aggregates alerts, and enables automated remediation – detecting deviations from security best practices with a single click.
- Amazon CloudWatch to observe and monitor resources and applications on AWS – collecting real-time logs, metrics, and event data in automated dashboards improving operational performance and security.
- AWS CloudTrail to track and audit their hybrid-account activity and changes in real-time on the AWS platform, providing detailed event history and logs to enhance security and to ensure AWS Instance compliance.
- AWS Config to continuously assess, audit, and monitor AWS resource configurations over time – enhancing security, compliance, and resource management.
Security matters – but so does reliability. Adhering to a meticulous implementation approach, each individual virtual machine (VM) was rigorously tested before transition. This ensured a smooth coexistence between legacy systems and the newly implemented cloud solutions.
Cost control is, of course, another key part of a successful cloud transition. Bespin Global gave particular attention to the financial aspects of the cloud transition, delving deep into a detailed cloud cost analysis.
To ensure the client never overshot its resource allocation, alerts were set up to notify the company of any excessive use, ensuring optimal cost management throughout the process.
RESULTS & BENEFITS
When asked about their experience with Bespin Global, the client highlighted the exceptional speed at which services were provided. Quoting the IT Manager: “What truly set Bespin Global apart was the holistic approach of their sales, presales, and delivery teams. Working in unison, almost like a cohesive ecosystem, they ensured tight coordination at every phase of the project.”
The company acknowledges that to make the endeavor successful, both parties put in significant effort. It wasn’t just a vendor-client relationship; it felt like a true partnership, a mutual win-win.
Looking ahead, the client now has a clear roadmap and is already in discussions with Bespin Global regarding next steps. For example, they are considering the integration of IoT in their real estate holdings, a move they envision in the next one to two years.
The transition to cloud also brought about a strategic shift in how the team allocated its resources, pivoting their focus towards more pressing priorities, such as adapting to disruptive technologies like AI and VR.
With a cloud-centric approach now in place, our client can take an agile and forward-looking posture in a rapidly evolving property market.
About Bespin Global, an e& enterprise company:
An AWS Premier Tier Services Partner and AWS Managed Service Partner, BESPIN GLOBAL MEA (Middle East and Africa) is a leading provider of automated cloud solutions and consulting services, including cloud adoption, strategy, migration, implementation, Managed Services, DevOps, FinOps and Data & Analytics. Bespin is positioned as a Leader in Gartner’s 2020 Magic Quadrant for Public Cloud Infrastructure Professional and Managed Services, as well as a “Visionary” in Gartner’s 2022 Magic Quadrant for IT Transformation Services.
In late 2022, Bespin Global MEA and e& enterprise formed a joint venture with the aim to assist enterprises in their digital transformation journey and eventually become the largest pure-play public cloud-managed and professional services provider in the Middle East, Turkey, Africa, and Pakistan.
Bespin’s cloud FinOps management platform, OpsNow offers an automated end-to-end solution for customers to effectively manage cloud assets and costs, optimize cloud expenses, and automate the implementation of cloud governance policies across multi-cloud environments.
Address: The Offices 4, #138-139, One Central, Dubai World Trade Center (DWTC)
Telephone: 800 BESPIN (237746)
P.O. Box: 340729