The Leading Provider of Private Banking Software
Odyssey Financial Technologies, founded in 1995, specializes in front and middle-office software for the private wealth and asset management industries. Since its inception, Odyssey has been continuously expanding its solution portfolio to address the ever-increasing needs of a customer base of over 200 financial institutions in more than 30 countries.
Odyssey’s private banking customers are continually striving to improve the productivity of their relationship managers. These professionals must digest an ever-expanding amount of information related to their clients’ highly personalized portfolio profiles, recommendation lists, customized constraints, preferences, and so on. It became clear to Odyssey that the only way to keep pace with this amplified workload would be for their solution to deliver much faster throughput.
A Homegrown Memory Caching Solution Fails to Keep Up
Odyssey’s initial technique to increase their application’s performance was to create a proprietary memory caching mechanism to optimize the way data is stored, processed, and managed. The mission of their in-house solution was to keep as much data as possible in main memory to avoid the delays incurred by retrieving data from disk. Designing, developing, and maintaining this added infrastructure required dedicating a specialized team of three full-time developers. Unfortunately, Odyssey soon encountered significant scalability and flexibility issues in their caching implementation. At this point, Odyssey faced a conundrum many software development companies encounter when a technical issue sidetracks their developers from their core competencies.
Turning to Sybase In-Memory Databases for a Faster, Richer, More Cost-Effective Solution
Odyssey has been a Sybase partner for over 10 years. During this time, Odyssey has leveraged Sybase ASE’s high-volume data and global scalability to provide its customers with highly performing, best-of-breed solutions. After careful consideration of their options, Odyssey decided to capitalize on Sybase ASE’s IMDB capabilities as an intelligent caching mechanism to supplant its proprietary buffering implementation. Given that accessing data from memory is, on average, ten times faster than retrieving it from disk, switching to IMDB led to dramatic performance improvements that let Triple’A Plus keep pace with its expanding transaction workload.
“We’ve had a long and fruitful relationship with Sybase. Replacing our proprietary data caching technology with Sybase’s IMDB was the next logical step in our partnership,” says Fabrice Bidard, Product Marketing Manager, Odyssey Financial Technologies.
Aside from delivering notably better throughput, from the perspective of the Odyssey application IMDB acts as a “black box”: there’s no need to alter any logic to take advantage of its capabilities. This approach frees developers to focus on their core competencies while IMDB’s caching functionality helps improve responsiveness. If desired, in-memory data can easily be safeguarded by moving it to persistent storage. Since IMDB is part of the standard Sybase implementation, it’s open and transparent to other applications as well as business intelligence and other popular tools.
Because Sybase’s IMDB is completely integrated into Sybase’s ASE, Odyssey’s customers are free to decide at implementation time the exact mixture of IMDB, Relaxed Durability Database (RDDB) and traditional, disk based storage databases. Odyssey can also suggest an appropriate database configuration mix based on best practices. This freedom is possible because Odyssey provides the same code base, independent of the database type selected at install time. Furthermore, customers are at liberty to select a different database configuration even after Triple’A Plus has gone into production.
Before selecting IMDB, Odyssey had assigned three developers to work full time in the design, development and maintenance of their proprietary caching solution. After the integration of Odyssey and IMDB, these developers were once again freed to work on Odyssey’s core application logic and on enhancing the user experience. Self-service websites are just one example of an application enhancement achieved after the integration of IMDB into Odyssey’s solution. Odyssey’s customers are the ultimate beneficiaries of these self-service websites, which:
- Present account information
- Provide access to historical reports
- Discuss their investments with their relationship managers
- Input orders directly in the web site
By replacing their proprietary, in-house caching logic with Sybase ASE IMDB, Odyssey was able to quickly derive substantially better performance and scalability, save on labor costs, as well as offer their customers additional application functionality and greater deployment flexibility.