Leading IT outsourcing provider Protera Technologies has over 20 years of experience offering expert services for SAP enterprise software customers. Focused on meeting the migration and managed services needs of organizations whose businesses are centered on the market-leading ERP ecosystem, Protera is one of very few globally certified SAP partners boasting five critical outsourcing certifications, including hosting and cloud services.
Guaranteed access to SAP is a core proposition for the company, which currently manages more than 1,000 SAP environments. So, it’s critical that it provide unmatched network connectivity to its co-location data centers as well as to its public cloud partners such as Amazon Web Services (AWS).
Increasingly, in fact, Protera sees itself as a leading cloud broker that is committed to integrating and enabling access to global, public cloud providers via its Protera AppCare delivery platform, which aims to satisfy the growing contingent of SAP Centric customers who need to run their applications on a Hybrid Cloud.
“With Masergy, we can offer a better overall return on investment or lower TCO for our customers. Protera has integrated Masergy’s connectivity services into our AppCare Platform which enables access to any applications by the end user in a seamless way no matter where these applications reside whether it be public, private cloud, or traditional data centers.”
Protera originally adopted Masergy’s Virtual Private LAN Service (VPLS) that provides seamless connections back into its MPLS network to support dedicated systems for customers it was hosting in its data centers. But it has extended the relationship to become an on-net provider for Masergy with a plug-in to a primary Protera data center in Chicago. This has enabled it to service multiple cloud customers off its main Masergy connection.
This way, customers that are migrating SAP environments to the cloud don’t have to get involved in the complications of managing and troubleshooting their own VPN plug-ins to services like AWS. Nor will they have to sacrifice the advantages of a fully meshed network that can handle high amounts of traffic without suffer breaks in transmission data should a device fail.
Protera’s decision to use Masergy’s networking services not only for its data center hosting but also as an on-net carrier is particularly interesting in light of the fact that Protera actually services SAP engagements for a very large telco company and network services provider.
One particular customer engagement spurred this outcome. The company provides full IT outsourcing services to Chromaflo, a global provider of colorant
and tinting systems.
“Even though we have a strategic relationship with the large telco network provider, we found that the flexibility and the cost-effectiveness of the Masergy solution made a lot more sense for this particular customer,” said Carl LaFoe, Protera’s global VP of hosting and app services. “And that also spawned the decision for us to go ahead and become an on-net carrier for Masergy.”
Today, Protera isn’t reselling network services provided by some of the other large telco companies, as the cost has not been that competitive, he explained. Most customers come in believing that moving to the public cloud will lower upfront costs, LaFoe noted, and it is important to be cognizant of that.
But there’s more to it than that: For a provider of full IT outsourcing services that’s also competing long-term with many other SaaS solutions (including from SAP itself), it’s equally important to be able to bring unique offerings to executive-level discussions.
“We have to be able to talk about how we can take not only SAP but all of those ancillary applications, including VoIP and all those things, and package that together with a leading infrastructure and data services provider,” LaFoe said.
Its relationship with Masergy assures that it can, by providing solid, dedicated circuits for reliable connectivity across various cloud platforms as Protera transparently moves workloads from one to another in support of customer requirements. It also helps that Masergy has the ability to offer six different levels of quality of service (QoS) guarantees to support a range of applications, including voice and video.
“With Masergy, the opportunity exists to just buy local Internet bandwidth and leverage VPLS to route across readily available Internet circuits meshed with the MPLS backbone,” added LaFoe. So, Protera can assure executives that, as their data requirements become more demanding, its solution won’t falter.
When it comes to the Masergy partnership, LaFoe describes it as “flawless.” “The feedback from the end customer has been very positive as well,” he said. “They’ve enjoyed working with the Masergy team.”