Case Study

INFINOX: Building an online brokerage for a global audience with AWS and DoiT

Financial Services and Insurance
Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud, AWS, AWS Marketplace, Flexsave
United Kingdom

Financial trading has traditionally had very high barriers to entry. Since 2009, however, online broker INFINOX has set out to level the playing field, providing investors of all sizes access to a full range of asset classes with its digitized trading platform. INFINOX serves both institutional and retail investors, but what makes it stand apart from other online brokers is its commitment to service. 

“We really try to give our customers an equal level of service, whether they’re a high net worth institutional customer or an individual,” says Mike O’Sullivan, Chief Technical Officer at INFINOX. It’s an approach that has proved successful. Since its launch, INFINOX has expanded from a UK-based broker to a global one, with a presence in 15 countries, winning a host of industry awards along the way. With DoiT and Amazon Web Services, it has begun the next step of its journey.

The brief

Getting to grips with expansion in a multicloud environment

As the company grew, it faced new challenges. When O’Sullivan joined INFINOX in late 2019, he saw an opportunity to overhaul the broker’s legacy technology solutions, optimize them for scalability and align them with customers’ needs. “I wanted us to view technology from the point of view of our customers rather than legacy ways of doing things,” explains O’Sullivan. “The idea is that we look at how they use the platform, and then we build back from there.” 

INFINOX also needed to find a balance between scaling up for a global customer base while still addressing the specific needs of each region it operates in. As the company expanded over the years, it built up several solutions for each of the challenges it faced across its multicloud environment, but that led to a complexity that proved hard to scale. In addition, as a financial services provider, INFINOX has to make sure that all of its technology conforms to the highest standards of data privacy and security across several jurisdictions. 

Ultimately, this complexity meant that rather than focusing on strategy and quality products, O’Sullivan and his team were spending more time than they wanted on operations management and billing. “We had a lot of inheritances across our stack and it was increasingly hard to integrate new teams. Also, as a CTO, cost and billings were taking up far too much of my time,” says O’Sullivan. “DoiT understands these issues very well and put us in a position where we could build our platform more strategically.”

What we did

Getting the most out of AWS with DoiT

Over the course of 2021, O’Sullivan and his team began looking for ways to simplify and consolidate INFINOX’s infrastructure. Towards the end of the year, the company was introduced to DoiT as a leading technology partner for cloud-based platforms. After a successful initial experience with another part of the platform, INFINOX engaged DoiT to streamline its main infrastructure on AWS. O’Sullivan was impressed with how even at the very earliest stages, DoiT responded to INFINOX’s specific needs.

“We deal with a lot of SaaS providers and the approach by DoiT is wholly different to the vast majority of them,” he says. “They are not constantly trying to upsell us or rush us into anything. They are very measured in their approach, and when they give us a data point, we respond to it because it’s a quality data point. They really took the time to work with us and understand exactly what we required.”

With DoiT’s help, INFINOX has redesigned its key infrastructure to run Amazon Elastic Cloud Compute (EC2) instances with on-demand pricing for maximum flexibility. Amazon Relational Database Services (RDS) allows INFINOX to easily scale its databases across its regions, while Amazon Web Application Firewall (WAF) protects the platform from malicious actors. DoiT also helped the company to navigate the AWS Marketplace to find third-party services to suit its specific needs. As a result, INFINOX was able to simplify its scaling and load-balancing with a version of the popular open-source software NGINX specifically designed to pair with AWS. 

For Danislav Penev, Head of Technology Production at INFINOX, DoiT’s comprehensive and easy-to-use Cloud Management Platform (CMP) and the cost-optimization product Flexsave™ were crucial to the new infrastructure. “The CMP provided such good value for us,” he says. “We can use it to look across our whole infrastructure and summarize costs, see reports, identify anomalies or underused services very quickly. ”

The result

Building a platform for growth

The partnership between INFINOX and DoiT has already begun to make an impact, less than a year after it began. The CMP has given the company unprecedented visibility into the services it uses, and by consolidating its billing in one place, it is in a much better position to drive efficiencies across the company. Meanwhile, Flexsave has already generated significant cost savings with ease. “We’ve been able to save 20% on our cloud compute costs with Flexsave, and we’ve barely had to lift a finger,” says Penev. 

While DoiT takes care of the infrastructure management and billing, INFINOX is able to focus on the things that matter. “The transparency and lightness of touch that DoiT brings helps me keep my focus on strategy and growth,” says O’Sullivan. “And that flows down to our developers as well. Whenever they get stuck, we say ‘Just DoiT’. They log a ticket and get back to building the best products they can.”

INFINOX is far from done, however. Now that its key infrastructure is properly integrated with DoiT’s CMP, the company is looking to new markets and areas of growth. With DoiT’s help, it is starting to add several other SaaS products to provide the best possible service to its customers wherever it can. “Nowadays, when we add new SaaS providers to our platform, the first thought is ‘how can we get this working with DoiT?’” says O’Sullivan. “That’s a measure of how much DoiT has affected our mindset in the six months we’ve been working together.”

Mike O’Sullivan, CTO, INFINOX
“We had a lot of inheritances across our stack and it was increasingly hard to integrate new teams. Also, as a CTO, cost and billings were taking up far too much of my time. DoiT understands these issues very well and put us in a position where we could build our platform more strategically.”

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