Adopting a hyperconverged private cloud allows the firm to tackle the pandemic-driven opportunities that its legacy infrastructure could not support.

To keep pace with the fast-changing demands in e-commerce, a Malaysian logistics and express carrier provider has adopted cloud computing and achieved a threefold increase in business transactions.

The company, GD Express (GDEX) had a legacy IT infrastructure that could not support its vision to scale. Yet, in the midst of the pandemic-driven demand for its services, the company needed a flexible and modern infrastructure that could support seamless end-to-end operations. It was already managing up to 180,000 consignments a day, and each of these passed through multiple shipment tracking points before reaching its destination. The tracking points generated data that offered visibility on the shipment status, creating a myriad of records that needed to be processed and stored efficiently.

To continue on this growth path, GDEX needed to ensure compliance with service level agreements (SLAs). Said its Managing Director and Group Chief Executive Officer, Teong Teck Lean: “The logistics industry is fast changing, and the pandemic has made the business landscape even more challenging to navigate. As a customer-focused and technology-driven company, we (have to) ensure that we are always ready to adapt to changes in customer and market demands.”

Choosing the right approach

GDEX was established in 1997 in Malaysia to provide express delivery services for domestic and international markets. It was the first local express delivery company to have obtained ISO 9001:2000. Today, GDEX operates a network of 425 stations, comprising 99 branches, 64 agents, 11 lodge-in centers and 251 reseller agencies across Malaysia and Singapore. It has a fleet of 1,277 trucks and vans and over 4,500 employees across its operations. 

GDEX’s Charles Ong, Special Project Advisor commented: “After comparing our legacy infrastructure with (features of) a hyperconverged private cloud where software managed everything, it was clear that the latter would give us the rapid scalability we needed to support fluctuating volumes at a lower cost.”

Ong was referring to the vendor chosen by his firm: Nutanix. “GDEX’s operations now run smoothly regardless of the volume of shipments. Staff now have all the information they need, whenever they need, to make sure deliveries are on schedule. The platform enables GDEX to scale in minutes to accommodate large order spikes for key e-commerce events such as 11.11, resulting in an approximately 100% increase in GDEX’s overall business revenues.”

A solution to sustain growth

For logistics firms such as GDEX, e-commerce is both a great business opportunity and a great IT challenge, Ong said. Adopting an elastic cloud platform enables the firm to scale quickly and efficiently, without compromising service and costs. “We would not have achieved this success if we had continued with our legacy infrastructure. The cost of scaling and management would have eaten into our margins, but (we are) now able to sustain and scale our operations to consistently meet customer and market demands.”

The company has since put in place three Nutanix Clusters and migrated all its core applications for governing shipments to the cloud platform. Using the infrastructure, the company’s IT team now manages server, storage and networking resources through a single pane of glass.

Said Avinash Gowda, Country Manager, Malaysia, Nutanix: “As Malaysia’s digital economy continues to advance, a new generation of digital consumers has emerged and driven the growth of e-commerce. Nutanix has been supporting businesses like GDEX in accelerating their digital transformation, enabling them to scale and meet evolving consumer demands.”