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Celanese Corporation reduced operational costs by more than 50 percent while improving response to workload demands and delivering superior service levels for its managed infrastructure by switching to a cloud managed services solution.
Now the chemical company can reallocate these cost savings to drive innovation, strategy and an increased emphasis on security.
Based in Dallas, Texas, Celanese produces a wide variety of specialty materials used in everyday household and industrial products. The company’s Materials Solutions division and Acetyl Chain division share an IT infrastructure running a single instance of SAP.
This infrastructure supports various business-critical functions such as finance, human resources and manufacturing, as well as applications including business intelligence, advanced planning, risk and compliance.
Costs piling up
To support its SAP deployment, Celanese hosted its servers in a data center owned and operated by a third party. As the infrastructure expanded to match the company’s growth, Celanese faced serious the challenge of rising costs associated with owning physical assets that were managed and maintained by somebody else. Frequent upgrades also required the company to outsource for people with niche SAP skills, which drove costs even higher.
“The costs were piling up, and we reached the point where we had to transition away from the capital expense model,” Madhu Bangalore, Senior Manager of Application Development Strategy for Celanese, said. “As we moved to a virtual environment, we were still tied up in the old world of physical machines, and the upkeep with maintenance costs, operating costs and licensing costs became exorbitant.”
To remain competitive, Celanese sought to cut operational costs with a more flexible delivery model for its SAP platforms and operations, reducing the need to outsource for people with niche skills to manage the infrastructure.
Cutting costs with managed cloud hosting
Celanese engaged IBM Cloud Managed Services for SAP to help the company move 40 SAP systems, 213 interfaces and approximately 30 terabytes (TB) of data to a private hosted cloud infrastructure. The new solution provides Celanese with a security-rich, cost-effective and scalable cloud environment with nearly all operating system and system management licenses and services consolidated into a single, monthly charge.
By moving to a private hosted cloud solution, Celanese can quickly bring new businesses online and see the immediate impact on the company’s operating budget while avoiding the usual capital expenses associated with such acquisitions. The solution drives a lower total cost of ownership and is a simpler way to measure return on investment. This is particularly valuable in an industry in which mergers, acquisitions and divestitures are common.
As a result of this successful implementation, the company is now looking into moving its non-SAP data center into the cloud as well. “[IBM] definitely knew what they were doing,” Bangalore said. “We were confident they were the right partner to help take us through the migration.”
Learn more about what a cloud managed services solution can do for your business, whether you’re using SAP, Oracle or another application.