A leading travel company in Myanmar, Oway operates the country’s first one-stop online travel portal, offering the largest inventory of hotels, flights, cars, buses and tours. It also provides ridesharing, corporate transportation, and online grocery services.
A VMware Cloud Verified partner, Golden TMH Telecom is a leading communications and network service provider in Myanmar.
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Travel Company Oway Entrusts the Heart of its Business to VMware Cloud
Yangon-based company Oway Group wants to make life more convenient for consumers in Myanmar by enabling them to access travel, transport and groceries through digital solutions. But frequent power outages led to downtime for its ERP (enterprise resource planning) system, which was hosted at the headquarters. To overcome this challenge, Oway worked with Golden TMH (GTMH) to migrate the ERP workload to the GTMH Edge Cloud, built on VMware cloud technologies. Since then, performance has increased by 30%, and there is no longer any downtime. Oway is also ready to move other workloads to the local cloud if the government requires data to be stored in the country.
Tapping into Myanmar’s fast-growing mobile internet market, leading travel company Oway aims to bring digital solutions to the country. It started Myanmar’s first online travel platform in 2012 when the country opened up to international tourism and expanded into ride-hailing services three years later to cater to the growing middle class. When the Covid-19 pandemic impacted international travel and transport last year, Oway pivoted to online groceries and shifted its focus to local travel and tours.
” Moving to the GTMH Edge Cloud, powered by VMware technologies, has increased our performance by 30%, a really big improvement for Oway. ”
Wai Lin Tun, senior manager, Oway
Power outages are common in Myanmar due to the outdated and overworked electricity grid, with each disruption lasting for hours.
Every time the power went out, the computer servers at Oway Group had to be restarted. Whether it was night or day or during the weekend, an engineer would have to go back to the office to troubleshoot the ERP system since it was hosted on-premises.
If the ERP system goes offline along with the servers, transactions will not be recorded, hence impacting business operations. And with Oway’s multiple digital business verticals, the ERP application must remain accessible 24/7.
“We had very frequent downtime because the electricity was going out three to four times a week,” said Wai Lin Tun, senior manager, Oway. “Sometimes, the power supply is so unstable that it would stop again just as the engineer has completed rebooting the servers and getting the ERP application up and running, and he’d have to wait for the power to be restored before starting over.”
With the pandemic curtailing travel and bringing about lockdowns and work-from-home policies, Oway started looking for a solution that would solve this perennial problem and optimize operational costs.
An uninterruptible power supply (UPS) system that provides battery backup power is expensive and not feasible. At the same time, new cybersecurity legislation might require data to be stored locally.
Hence in June 2020, Oway engaged GTMH, one of the leading telecommunications companies in the country, to migrate its ERP workload to the telco’s cloud services. Compared to a hyperscaler, local hosting would reduce latency in the ERP system and comply with regulations.
“GTMH is the leader in data center services, with many big customers in Myanmar,” said Tun. “We believe that they will be a reliable partner, and we trust their service.”
“The cloud has enabled us to be agile and flexible so that we can adapt quickly during this uncertain period.”
Wai Lin Tun, senior manager, Oway
A full-service provider in the telecommunications industry, GTMH is also VMware Cloud Verified. This gold standard gives organizations the confidence that they will be getting the best implementation of VMware Cloud infrastructure as a service. The GTMH Edge Cloud is powered by VMware’s best-in-class network, storage and compute solutions.
“Because GTMH is a wireless carrier, we have the ability to utilize our domestic assets and redundant peering capabilities with all the major networks to address both latency and compliance needs simultaneously,” said Derek Hellmons, COO of GTMH. “We’re able to provide domestic low latency, which allows the full usage of VMware functionalities in an optimum environment — this makes us unique and the cloud leader in Myanmar.”
Now that Oway’s mission-critical ERP application is running smoothly on the cloud, there is no longer any downtime even during power cuts, ensuring seamless business operations at all times.
Previously, with physical servers, the IT team would take days to troubleshoot whenever issues cropped up. But it now takes just one to two days as the engineers can monitor the virtual machines through the vCloud Director portal and configure them remotely. This enables the IT team to work from home effectively and safely during the pandemic.
And if there’s traffic congestion, Oway can request GTMH to increase the bandwidth in a matter of hours. This would have been impossible with physical servers, as they would need to be reset and reconfigured, leading to downtime. With the cloud, Oway’s operations will not be disrupted even during the peak season when there is a spike in financial transactions.
“Moving to the GTMH Edge Cloud, powered by VMware technologies, has increased our performance by 30%, a really big improvement for Oway,” said Tun. “It’s enabled us to be agile and flexible so that we can adapt quickly during this uncertain period.”
Moreover, by eliminating physical servers, Oway was able to immediately reduce the operational costs of procuring, maintaining, cooling, and storing hardware.
“The pandemic has put a lot of financial pressure on businesses in Myanmar,” said Hellmons. “Migrating their on-premises infrastructure to the cloud not only greatly reduces the total cost of ownership (TCO) of their IT infrastructure but also delivers increased manageability, reliability and productivity.”
As Myanmar prepares to reopen its borders, paving the way to business recovery, Oway is starting to see an uptick in demand for its services. And if the government eventually mandates that all data must be stored in the country, Oway is ready to move its other workloads to the local cloud with GTMH. For now, moving its ERP to the cloud is helping Oway to emerge stronger and more resilient as a business in the wake of the pandemic.