As IT specialists within the group, APA-IT is responsible for operating computing systems for all APA companies and providing IT outsourcing services to a wide range of media companies in Austria, Switzerland and Germany. The company employs 136 people and achieves annual revenues of EUR 21.9 million.
To meet the challenge, APA decided to replace its highly customized ERP system with a modern solution based on SAP ERP applications. To take advantage of the latest technology and benefit from future releases as soon as possible, the decision was made to stay close to the recommended standard configuration and run SAP ERP powered by the innovative SAP HANA platform.
In order to ensure smooth and reliable business operations, the company needed an operating system that would provide performance and stability without increasing the management and administration workload to keep operating costs low. APA engaged its IT service provider APA-IT Informations Technologie GmbH to find the right platform for its new SAP solutions.
Mag. Wolfgang Hammel, Head of Commercial IT Solutions at APA-IT Informations Technologie GmbH, said, “Our goal was to run SAP ERP as cost-efficiently as possible, with standardized processes across the entire application landscape, which includes SAP ERP applications and SAP HANA databases.
XIT-cross information technologies provided training to facilitate rapid and smooth deployment of the SAP systems. Ing. Wolfgang Celeda, System Manager at APA-IT Informations Technologie GmbH, said, “We have many years’ experience with Linux, and working with XIT-cross information technologies helped us to hit the ground running with SUSE Linux Enterprise Server for SAP Applications. The team’s expertise enabled us to quickly understand how we can apply our existing Linux knowledge to get the most out of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server.”
APA-IT deployed two pre-configured SAP HANA appliances and created a fully virtualized environment using VMware vSphere virtualization technology to run its SAP ERP application servers. The solution is operated on Cisco Unified Computing System servers, which are replicated across two data centers to support business continuity in an event of disaster.
APA-IT integrated the SUSE Linux Enterprise Server for SAP Application instances into its existing collected open source monitoring framework, minimizing management overheads.
Mag. Wolfgang Hammel said, “After setting up test and development systems and running SAP ERP on SUSE Linux for SAP Applications for a few months, we are convinced that we have made the right choice.”
To deliver CRM capabilities to the group, APA-IT uses the SAP Cloud for Customer solution—an enterprise software-as-a-service offering that also runs on SUSE Linux Enterprise Server.
Ing. Wolfgang Celeda said, “We are very satisfied with SUSE Linux Enterprise Server for SAP Applications. It delivers a very stable platform with 99,9999 percent availability, helping us to provide central ERP applications reliably to all group companies.”
Thanks to the simple integration of the SAP landscape into the existing IT environment and operations processes, APA-IT obtains the advantages of a finely tuned operating system without adding complexity to its management and maintenance procedures.
Mag. Wolfgang Hammel said, “We selected SUSE Linux Enterprise Server for SAP Applications to be ready for the future. It is adapted specifically toward the needs and requirements of SAP software, so we can be sure that our mission-critical ERP systems run smoothly. Upgrades to new software releases will be easy because of the comprehensive tests done by SUSE and SAP. All this gives us the peace of mind we need to focus on streamlining how we run our business and explore new business opportunities for managed services.”