8BIT Global: Turns to Google Cloud to reduce infrastructure costs and devote resources to product development

About 8BIT Global

Located in Singapore, 8BIT Global is a fintech business that has developed an investment and wealth management platform known as WealthPark. The business’s parent companies—8I Holdings and 8VIC Holdings—operate in asset management, finance, and financial education.

Industries: Financial Services
Location: Singapore

With Google Cloud, 8BIT Global has achieved the scalability to support growth and enter new markets, enabled its teams to focus on development and value creation rather than infrastructure, and reduced infrastructure costs to the point it can support the simultaneous operation of an investment product at events with more than 1,000 participants.

Google Cloud results

  • Gives business the credibility to build trust and relationships with customers
  • Enables business to focus on development and delivering value rather than infrastructure
  • Realizes the potential of AI and machine learning to improve customer experience

Reduces infrastructure costs for an event from $330,000 to $2,200

Located in Singapore, 8BIT Global is a fintech business that is developing an investment and wealth management platform known as WealthPark. The business’s parent companies—8I Holdings and 8VIC Holdings—operate in asset management, finance, and financial education. “Our customers are well aware of the importance of financial literacy,” says Ming Wang Lim, Head of Channel Development and General Counsel at 8BIT Global. “They want to leverage technology to better analyze existing and prospective investments to improve their wealth.”

The business breaks down its competitive advantage into three areas. The first is domain knowledge in finance and education that enables products to be accessible and engaging to the person on the street, making investing smarter, faster, and easier. Second, a ready customer base exists with graduates from the parent company’s financial education business. And third, an offering that integrates seamlessly with partners to give customers access to active and passive investments, insurance, trade execution, and other services.

Repositioning to support digitization

“Google Cloud outperformed its competitors in each area. Choosing Google Cloud also helped build credibility with the consumers we were targeting with WealthPark, as Google is synonymous with security and scalability.”

Ming Wang Lim, Head of Channel Development and General Counsel, 8BIT Global

In recent years, 8BIT Global has had to reposition its business to support the digitization of financial services and financial education. “Even though we are part of listed companies that, combined, have a presence in 29 countries, we have had to disrupt our model to prepare for changes in the way people consume and engage with information,” says Ming Wang. “We need to leverage an extremely reliable infrastructure to offer WealthPark—which covers 24 stock exchanges and 35,000 tickers—to investors around the world.”

8BIT Global evaluated multinational cloud service providers based on the maturity and functionality of their artificial intelligence and machine learning offerings, the reliability and scalability of their infrastructure services, and the depth and effectiveness of their security architectures. “Google Cloud outperformed its competitors in each area,” says Ming Wang. “Choosing Google Cloud is helping build credibility with the consumers we are targeting with WealthPark, as Google is synonymous with security and scalability.”

Running in Google Cloud

“Using App Engine with Docker has enabled us to reduce the time needed to prepare and manage a production environment by 50%—or, in some cases, considerably more.”

Ming Wang Lim, Head of Channel Development and General Counsel, 8BIT Global

8BIT Global has undertaken a soft launch of WealthPark and is running the service in the Google Cloud Asia-Northeast1 region in Tokyo. The organization uses App Engine to run its applications in a serverless, scalable, fully managed environment; Compute Engine to provide infrastructure-as-a-service resources such as high-performance virtual machines; Cloud SQL database to run MySQL and PostgreSQL databases; and Cloud Storage to provide unified object storage.

Deploying Google Cloud has enabled 8BIT Global to reduce its need to recruit engineers to run its production environments. “Using App Engine with Docker has enabled us to cut the time needed to prepare and manage a production environment by 50%—or, in some cases, considerably more,” says Ming Wang. “A key example entails deploying the Flask microframework used by applications in a traditional virtual private server environment. We can save 90% of the time needed to set up Flask simply by uploading the code to App Engine.”

Support events with more than 1,000 participants

With Google Cloud, 8BIT Global has been able to collaborate with its shareholder 8VIC Holdings, which runs financial education seminars and large-scale summits, to make WealthPark an integral part of these events. These seminars and summits—which can attract up to 1,000 participants—help boost adoption of the product.

“We deploy a baseline of 50 virtual machine instances to support traffic during these events,” says Ming Wang. “This scales to a maximum of 75 instances to support a peak of 400 requests per second.”

“Google Cloud’s on-demand price model meant we only spent about $2,200 on this exercise.

“If we were to buy servers for this purpose, it would have cost us about $330,000, not including setup, man-hours required for preparation, and miscellaneous costs such as electricity.

“This has been a game-changer for us and the broader industry.”

Devoting resources to growing the business

With Google Cloud deployed and running smoothly, 8BIT Global can now dedicate its resources to growing the business and developing WealthPark. “Infrastructure is effectively removed from the equation,” says Ming Wang. The IT function now focuses on desktop support, management, and digital security across the organization.

8BIT Global is now exploring opportunities presented by Google Cloud’s strength in AI and machine learning to understand more about its customers so it can provide a more intuitive, personalized experience to them. “We view these services as key business enablers—we have started using Cloud Natural Language for one of our research and development endeavors and will be looking at Cloud ML Engine to improve our capabilities,” says Ming Wang.

“The documentation around products was comprehensive, and support was forthcoming. Overall, our experience with Google has been excellent, and we look forward to deepening our relationship.”

Ming Wang Lim, Head of Channel Development and General Counsel, 8BIT Global

High-quality Google support

8BIT Global is extremely pleased with the support and assistance it has received from Google Cloud. “Google Cloud’s strength in AI and machine learning and emphasis on backend simplicity is closely aligned to our corporate culture,” says Ming Wang. “The documentation around products was comprehensive, and support was forthcoming. Overall, our experience with Google has been excellent, and we look forward to deepening our relationship.”

8BIT office

About 8BIT Global

Located in Singapore, 8BIT Global is a fintech business that has developed an investment and wealth management platform known as WealthPark. The business’s parent companies—8I Holdings and 8VIC Holdings—operate in asset management, finance, and financial education.

Industries: Financial Services
Location: Singapore