Abacus is creating new market opportunities in the lottery industry with its technology. The platform has been meticulously planned and tested, but with each deployment Abacus needs absolute trust in its infrastructure. They also need it to scale in line with business growth.
Abacus has developed its Fusion Platform to help lottery operators access more points of interaction with its customers as well as offering new games and other services. Abacus provides a flexible, robust, secure and feature rich gateway to these wider sales environments. In real terms this means giving lotteries vastly more opportunities to sell to their customers in today's retail environment.
"Running a lottery is a complex process, so lottery providers require absolute certainty as to the reliability of their systems and in the resilience built into their infrastructures," comments Paul Lawson, CTO at Abacus. "If the integrity of the lottery is compromised, so is belief in the game. As a result, Abacus' role as a gateway between the lottery system and the point of sale is a challenging one. Abacus requires the same level of systems integrity as some of the biggest players in the market."
Working with CDW
A closed, secure system with multiple failover points, Abacus' gateway has to stand up to the most exacting standards. However, there was a time when achieving this level of capability still seemed a distant reality. "We had an initial set-back with our initial technology partner, which made us think twice about who we worked with," Lawson comments. "CDW had provided me with support for many years in previous roles, and the team I'd worked with most recently felt like true colleagues, not external parties. I quickly realised this sort of hands on, consultative and very honest approach was what we need at Abacus."
Solution - ServiceWorks Compute
The Abacus system is built on the CDW ServiceWorks Compute platform - a cloud-based, on-demand platform that reliably supports the most challenging workloads. Abacus is a complex and unique solution which requires bespoke elements such as enhanced security systems to meet the demands of the Lottery industry. Coupled with failover to mirrored systems, significant data recovery mechanisms and seven year storage of database transactions, Abacus is resilient and compliant as a business.
"Despite customisation at the top end of the solution, ServiceWorks Compute offered a remarkably close match to what we really needed from the start. We began with a blank canvas. Working closely with CDWs solutions architects, we designed the best combination of the existing ServiceWorks Compute platform, mixed with bespoke elements such as the security systems required by Abacus. We also benefited from the integration of support and management services, which together have made it incredibly easy for Abacus to hit the ground running." Lawson states.
What it means for Abacus
"The roll out from start to finish was quick and simple. We're talking about three months from concept to live system - for a project that has no precedents for either business! And that was only possible because of the quality of the CDW team," says CTO Lawson. "Whether it's the patience of the solutions architects who sat with me through many iterations of my designs, engineers helping us plumb the whole thing together, or the account team who feel like they're on the Abacus payroll - they really fit in with our corporate culture."
The future for Abacus and CDW
Abacus has already grabbed the attention of lotteries around the globe, and is currently deploying a full gateway solution in a major European market. With no real competitors in the market, and a proposition that is in high demand within the sector, Abacus is planning for large future growth.
"We have a number of major customers in advanced stages of dialogue and proof of concept," Lawson reports. "When these contracts land we will need to scale up quickly and efficiently, without compromising on resilience or performance. I feel absolutely confident that we can grow while maintaining those high standards, now that we're working with CDW."