Trace One: A flexible infrastructure for a global retail business network

About Trace One

Trace One provides a network for trusted business partners to collaborate in developing unique, healthy, and responsible private label products.

Industries: Technology
Location: France
Products: Compute Engine

About Cloudreach

Operating across Europe and the United States, Cloudreach is an international cloud computing consultancy providing best-practice guidance and cloud tooling.

Trace One closes its U.S. data center and implements Compute Engine to reduce hardware and operation costs and improve performance, providing a more reliable service to its customers.

Google Cloud Results

  • Provides a flexible infrastructure-as-a-service with Compute Engine that can easily be expanded to meet peaks in demand, improving cost efficiency
  • Improves system reliability and availability by reducing system crashes and simplifying reboot processes, enabling better customer service
  • Supports better compliance with security quality standards thanks to integrated logging

Scales with a click to meet peak demand

Trace One powers one of the largest business networks for fast-moving consumer goods professionals, from 20,000 companies in over 100 countries. Its ambition is to become a one-stop shop for private label goods, enabling retailers and suppliers to grow their network globally, source or promote products, and stay on top of industry trends, all in one place.

“We wanted to shut down our data centers in the United States, and are now looking at moving the UK and France data centers to the cloud, because it gives us more control. We want to be able to build the infrastructure that we need to automate and optimize, without investing in any more hardware.”

Michael Cohen, CTO, Trace One

“As part of our current evolution, we decided to focus on improving the performance of our platform,” says Michael Cohen, CTO at Trace One. “On top of that, we were experiencing problems with our U.S. server, causing connectivity problems for our global teams and costing money in operating costs. We looked for a way to solve those issues and evolve our infrastructure.” Working with Google Cloud Partner Cloudreach, Trace One chose Google Cloud Platform (GCP) as the solution.

“We wanted to shut down our data centers in the United States, and are now looking at moving the UK and France data centers to the cloud, because it gives us more control,” says Michael. “We want to be able to build the infrastructure that we need to automate and optimize, without investing in any more hardware.”

Closing the U.S. data center

For global companies with teams based around the world, solving problems at a physical data center when things go wrong can be difficult and costly. “At our U.S. data center, without a local team we were unable to solve our issues without hiring someone else to do it for us,” says Michael. “We had limited space for new customers, and the upgrade process was going to be expensive and time-consuming in terms of installing and validating new hardware.” When its U.S. servers ran out of space, Trace One decided to move to the cloud to reduce costs and gain greater flexibility.

“We use Compute Engine for professional service environments. The team can create environments on demand and in parallel, which we couldn’t do in the past due to cost and performance issues. Now we can create services in a click, closing the server overnight to control the cost.”

Junaid Ansari, Head of Infrastructure, Trace One

To do that, Trace One closed down its U.S. data center and moved its U.S. servers onto Compute Engine. “Prior to the migration, we had many discussions with Cloudreach to explain what we wanted to achieve,” says Junaid Ansari, Head of Infrastructure at Trace One. “We didn’t want to just lift and shift; we wanted to make some modifications and put in place a good foundation. As part of the migration, with the help of Cloudreach, we were able to optimize and remove unnecessary servers.”

“We use Compute Engine for our professional service environments,” Junaid explains. “The team can create environments on demand and in parallel, which we couldn’t do in the past due to cost and performance issues. Now we can create services in a click, closing the server overnight to control the cost.”

Facilitating security compliance

Moving to GCP also helps to support Trace One’s compliance with numerous security standards, crucial for Trace One and its clients. “Everything that happens in GCP is logged by default, we don’t have to implement logging as a separate service,” says Junaid. “It’s really important for us to have that information, in terms of supporting our compliance with standards such as ISO27001 and SOC 2.”

“Switching to the cloud reassures our clients that their data is more secure, not just against hacking threats, but in terms of availability: even if one data center goes down, there is a global network behind our servers, meaning it is unlikely our customers will suffer any performance issues,” says Michael.

A more flexible infrastructure

By moving its U.S. data center to virtual CPUs on Compute Engine, Trace One has resolved many of the performance issues it was experiencing. “Since moving to GCP, we have not experienced any system crashes. Our externals teams for 24/7 support are no longer experiencing any latencies in connecting to the server,” says Junaid. “Thanks to the fact that Google has a global network and multiple data centers, if we want to locate our servers in a new location, it’s easy: we don’t need to build any new infrastructure to do that.”

“With GCP, we can upgrade as and when we need more processing power, and scale our architecture dynamically. Moving to the cloud, we have more control and greater performance, for less money: we can restart, repeat, and redesign everything in one or two clicks, from Paris or the UK”.

Michael Cohen, CTO, Trace One

“We have also had financial savings,” says Michael. “In term of costs, we are saving approximately 40% on the monthly costs compared to our physical servers, and they have more capabilities. If we take into account the fact that we did not invest in hardware, the economy is even higher.”

“With GCP, we can upgrade as and when we need more processing power, and scale our architecture dynamically,” says Michael. “Moving to the cloud, we have more control and greater performance, for less money: we can restart, repeat, and redesign everything in one or two clicks , from Paris or the UK. We can easily replicate environments, whereas before it would have taken weeks.”

Now, Trace One is looking forward to closing down its other data center and migrating the rest of its infrastructure to the cloud, a process made easier thanks to new integrations with GCP. “We’re looking into hybrid or multi-cloud options: as GCP is open and compatible, we can build the infrastructure that suits us and our software. The arrival of NetApp Cloud Volumes for GCP will make our NetApp migration easier. FortiGate is now also available for GCP, which will help in terms of our firewall,” says Junaid. “We’re also looking to use Kubernetes for automated deployment.”

“We’re no longer thinking about the technology behind our product,” says Michael. “Since moving to the cloud, we don’t need to manage various layers of infrastructure, so our research and development team can focus more on developing new uses for GCP, such as machine learning. We have still a lot of work to do to prepare our Paris and UK data centers for moving to the cloud. With the help of Cloudreach, we’ll get there!”

About Trace One

Trace One provides a network for trusted business partners to collaborate in developing unique, healthy, and responsible private label products.

Industries: Technology
Location: France

About Cloudreach

Operating across Europe and the United States, Cloudreach is an international cloud computing consultancy providing best-practice guidance and cloud tooling.

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