IT solutions provider Databalance is the first company in the Netherlands to use Legrand’s Keor MOD UPS. Here, Databalance’s technical expert Bart Blom and CEO Nordi Malih explain their decision for that solution.
Databalance’s customer base is made up of companies in the mid-size and corporate segment for whom IT is a major lifeline. The IT solutions provider based in the Dutch town of Nieuwkuijk supports their business continuity, transition, growth and innovation, such as by offering customized solutions based on standard building blocks. It is a very diverse portfolio of businesses spanning manufacturing, e-commerce, retail and more. “We strive for maximum quality, and we love working with customers who do the same and who regard innovation as an important pillar. That’s when there’s a cultural fit,” states CEO Nordi Malih.
“Our customers are at different stages of transition and IT maturity, so they also have different questions and challenges. But continuity is always an important issue,” adds Malih. “The rapid pace of technological advancement is creating more dynamism in the IT world, and that brings opportunities but also more complexity and potential risks. Security, privacy and compliance are basic requirements that must be 100% watertight. We are an IT partner who our customers can brainstorm with and who enjoys getting actively involved with a view to the long term. We can draw on over 20 years of knowledge and experience and are continuously further improving our advice and service to customers.”
THE BEST RATHER THAN THE BIGGEST
Databalance’s data centers form the backbone of the company’s services. It has two data centers of its own and also uses external data centers. Bart Blom, the technical expert who is ultimately responsible for the data center solutions, explains the Databalance vision: “We’d rather be the best than the biggest. In terms of size, our own data centers are relatively small, but we offer just the same facilities as mega data centers. So we can compete with ‘the big guys’ in terms of state-of-the-art technology, quality and uptime, but we also offer a very personal approach.”
This is illustrated by the company’s most recent expansion project, explains Bart: “In 2005 a new building was constructed for us in Nieuwkuijk, including a data center. The data center met all the applicable standards, but we wanted maximum efficiency and quality. So I developed a plan to add a second data center inside the same building, constructed to the very highest standards. The existing data center was converted to the latest standards too.”
STRIVING FOR PERFECTION
Databalance likes to see high quality standards and a cultural fit with not only its customers but also its suppliers, and Legrand offered just what the company was looking for. Bart: “We’d seen Minkels’ cabinets at a co-located data center. They looked really good, were finished amazingly neatly and were optimally airtight. We soon started talking to them and recognized a shared desire for perfection.”
Minkels built the first corridors for Databalance. “When we came up against space limitations in the new data center, we started looking for UPSs that we could integrate into the cabinets since that would save us a lot of floor space. We just didn’t think there were any flexible and small-footprint UPSs that could deliver the power we needed. It was a tricky challenge, until we sat down with Legrand again.”
“The Legrand Group suggested the Keor MOD UPS, which met all our requirements. We were pleasantly surprised! Minkels built the corridors and did the necessary customization for the installation of the UPSs, and Legrand did the actual installation work. We’re the first company in the Netherlands to be using them.”
“It was a complex project. A huge number of components had to be integrated in the data center and the small spaces were a particular challenge. Legrand took a proactive, problem-solving approach every step of the way and sat down with us every week. They offered customization on all fronts and pulled off an impressive technical achievement with a special hot corridor with in-row cooling. It’s clear that they love a technical challenge at Legrand and they pull out all the stops to get the job done.”
“That’s why we were willing to give the Keor a try. Being the first user is a little daunting but it is also a great opportunity to innovate together. We mitigate any risks through thorough analysis and preparation. It helps if your partner strives for the same quality as you do. If something goes wrong – which hasn’t happened, by the way – you solve it as a team. That’s how we do things with our clients too. We were so enthusiastic that we replaced the existing UPSs with the Keor earlier than planned.”
“The end result has enabled us to make significant savings in terms of floor space and energy costs. Thanks to the UPSs, the whole data center is a lot more efficient and it also looks great! It’s a data center to be proud of, and our customers are welcome to come and take a look.”