How Trasmediterranea Acciona is leveraging the cloud

Spanish ship owning company Trasmediterranea Acciona is reusing core mainframe COBOL applications and re-hosting to the cloud to reduce operating costs and improve service levels

Sean Dudley
Sean Dudley
By Sean Dudley on 13 September 2016
How Trasmediterranea Acciona is leveraging the cloud

This article first appeared in the Summer 2016 issue of The Record.

Trasmediterranea Acciona is a leading ship owning company in Spain for both cargo and passengers, with a modern fleet consisting of 25 ships. The company is part of Acciona Group, a Spanish operator in infrastructures, energy, water and services.

Previously, the company relied on its mainframe to deliver ticketing and boarding application services. These core business services are comprised of COBOL batch processes and customer information control system transactions.

The mainframe was a costly solution for a seasonal business and the steady increase in recurring costs meant Trasmediterranea Acciona needed to reduce the operational costs, which were preventing further investment in the applications and limiting the adoption of new technologies.

Trasmediterranea Acciona was also keen to improve customer service and enhance the user experience, with the business critical ticketing and boarding application requiring modernisation. Options for this high value application included rewriting, replacement, retiring it and re-hosting to a different platform.

Microsoft Consulting Services introduced Trasmediterranea Acciona to the Microsoft Azure cloud platform. Using the Micro Focus Visual COBOL solution offered the opportunity to port core COBOL applications and existing business rules to .NET and Azure without rewriting existing application code.

“Our strategy was to leverage the Microsoft Azure cloud to achieve significant cost savings,” said a Trasmediterranea Acciona spokesperson. “Working with Micro Focus, we were able to reuse our existing COBOL mainframe business functions in our new cloud offering. This saved us time and money, and reduced our time to market from an original plan of twelve months down to less than nine. The Micro Focus Visual COBOL technology enabled us to rapidly move into a more modern architecture, under .NET, providing us a flexible platform for future growth.”

By reusing, Trasmediterranea Acciona was able to meet project timelines and preserve the capabilities of the business-critical logistics management application. Moving to the cloud also delivered a unified web-based user interface, with full information, people and processes integration.

Enhancing the application technology portfolio has improved business operations and realised a 20% saving in infrastructure costs. While all new functionality was to be delivered in C#, the development team continues to enhance and maintain their core COBOL applications, demonstrating their ongoing importance to the business.

Trasmediterranea Acciona has successful enhanced the customer experience. Travellers can now easily check travel or shipment reservations, transport status and delivery details. Thanks to the Microsoft Azure cloud platform, Trasmediterranea Acciona can plan future interface enhancements for customer services employees, who use the application to reserve, book, and process shipments on cargo ships. Furthermore, the capabilities of the application can easily be extended to deliver new services and support new delivery channels, such as smartphones and tablets. 


Topics

Case study, Cloud

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