Innovative startups require on-demand scalability at best prices

Customer Profile

BEN Energy develops and implements analytics based software solutions for energy providers to quantify, predict and affect customer behaviour. Their solutions are based on their so-called Energy Analytics Platform allowing utilities to succeed in tomorrow‘s customer-centric energy markets through data-driven decision making. It also utilizes behavioral psychology to make energy efficiency entertaining and simple.

Working with research institutions (such as ETH Zürich) and utility companies, BEN Energy engages household customers to educate and motivate them to save energy, while at the same time opens up new communication channels and revenue streams for utilities. Household customers experience new energy saving initiatives across multiple channels including web, mobile apps, email and postal mail.

The Challenge

“We are in a constant process of innovating our software solutions, so a main challenge for us is to be able to scale easily and add resources on demand for an affordable price. One of our multi-tenant portals is currently hosted at another cloud provider, but CloudSigma’s price-performance ratio is simply far more attractive.”Simon Tietze, Senior Data Scientist @ BEN Energy

BEN Energy prides itself on being a driver of innovation in energy efficiency and customer engagement. At the same time, this requires a constant iteration through the planning – building – running loop.

“All of BEN Energy’s web-­based products are deployed as SaaS, including our efficiency portals, electricity tariff calculators and research management systems. The efficiency portals are constantly iterated. Our products offer a sophisticated web interface for researchers, utilities and utility customers to interact in new ways, gaining energy efficiency insights and building market knowledge. That is why it is of crucial importance for us to be able to run our proprietary software within a fast service performance environment.”

As a startup with only a handful of employees and a focus on innovative software, another priority for BEN Energy was to ensure that time and money spent on building up and maintaining infrastructure was minimal.

In order for BEN Energy’s products to run smoothly, they needed not only flexibility, but also a responsive hosting service that allowed them to scale existing platforms as necessary and deploy new platforms quickly and easily. As a Swiss company, BEN Energy needed a provider with locations in Switzerland, that offers reliable customer support to assist the company in keeping up with their growing client base within the region.

The Solution

As a start-up company that is constantly innovating its product offerings, BEN Energy had some concerns about the pricing of its deployment. However, by leveraging CloudSigma’s competitive pricing, BEN Energy was able to keep infrastructure complexity and costs low while boosting performance and operational agility.

“CloudSigma offered an unprecedented price-performance ratio compared to the other providers we were taking into consideration. On top of that it provided a simple and fast infrastructure and a reliable service, which made CloudSigma an easy top choice for us.”

In addition, since BEN Energy’s utilities employ their platforms to provide an entirely new kind of service to their customers, most of the data in the platforms are directly generated through the usage of the applications themselves.

“CloudSigma has always been tremendously responsive and helpful, assisting many times with questions related to several layers in the stack ranging from virtual infrastructure to operating systems.”

The Impact

“Since day one CloudSigma’s infrastructure did exactly what public cloud infrastructure is supposed to do – meld into the background and effortlessly support the higher level processes running on top of it.”Simon Tietze, Senior Data Scientist @ BEN Energy

BEN Energy has run all of its energy efficiency portals for Swiss clients on CloudSigma since 2012. Since BEN Energy’s server software runs on a standard LAMP stack, with Linux being very well supported on the CloudSigma x86 platform, getting BEN Energy’s services to run in the cloud was extraordinarily easy.

The number of operational portals and other energy efficiency web applications has steadily grown as BEN Energy’s client base has grown, and CloudSigma has been a clear top choice provider to support BEN Energy’s growth due to its market-leading ease of use and performance.

“At BEN Energy, we liked CloudSigma’s web UI a lot better than what any other provider was able to offer. On CloudSigma’s platform, we are free to choose what OS our VMs will run. With other providers, we were restricted to a handful – and none of them were ones we actually liked. Choosing to move this portal instance to CloudSigma was an easy choice.”

The Future

“I recommend CloudSigma to any company that needs a flexible solution for an extremely competitive price. If you need a provider that allows an easy 1:1 deployment and an excellent customer support, CloudSigma will deliver.”Simon Tietze, Senior Data Scientist @ BEN Energy

A company nowadays needs reliable partners as well as providers. BEN Energy managed to find this in the form of CloudSigma. The successful technical deployment went hand in hand with integrated customer support, competitive pricing and fast performance creation, which are a firm foundation for future growth.

BEN Energy is posed to grow and meet customer requirements in the future in a highly agile way and to bring innovative products and services to market that teach people worldwide how to leverage efficiency and save otherwise scarce energy resources.

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About Zhenya Mocheva

Zhenya is a Digital Marketing Expert at CloudSigma, focusing on brand strategy, social media marketing and digital marketing campaigns. She is passionate about the continuous innovation within the digital environment and the endless growth opportunities that inbound marketing brings.