The Foundation for Innovation

Banco Millennium Atlântico charts new digital path with Cisco HyperFlex Systems.

Banco Millennium Atlântico

A private bank in Angola and leader in digital innovation and customer experience, Banco Millennium Atlântico (ATLANTICO) has modernized its data center and reduced costs with Cisco HyperFlex.

Industry: Financial services
Location: Luanda, Angola
Size: 300



  • Modernize data center infrastructure
  • Increase technology and service innovation
  • Improve resource and cost efficiency



  • Consolidated 66 blade servers down to 36 and six racks of gear down to two
  • Reduced annual colocation costs by roughly 50 percent
  • Accelerated virtual machine deployments from hours to minutes

New digital strategy

Wanting to become a leader in technology and service innovation, Banco Millennium Atlântico (ATLANTICO) announced a new digital strategy in 2019. Unfortunately, the Angolan bank's legacy infrastructure was incapable of supporting such lofty ambitions.

"We had a three-tier, multivendor environment, and it was a monster—like Frankenstein," says Rui Ribeiro, infrastructure lead at ATLANTICO. "It took a team of 10 people to manage it because each component required a different skill set. And when something went wrong, there was always a lot of finger-pointing."

To achieve its business and customer service goals, ATLANTICO needed technology underpinnings that would be easier to manage, secure, and scale while providing the flexibility and performance necessary to support a range of workloads.

"We wanted hyperconverged infrastructure," Ribeiro says. "One solution, one vendor."

ATLANTICO chose Cisco HyperFlex Systems and stretched a pair of all-flash clusters across its two data centers.

"Cisco HyperFlex has been a godsend for us," Ribeiro says.

Consolidation and performance

The density of Cisco HyperFlex enabled ATLANTICO to consolidate 66 blade servers down to 36 and six racks of gear down to two. In addition to freeing up valuable space and power in the bank's primary data center, the smaller footprint has slashed ATLANTICO's annual colocation costs.

"We're spending about 50 percent less for our backup and recovery site," Ribeiro notes. "The savings are significant."

He says that simplified cabling is another significant—and frequently overlooked—advantage of Cisco HyperFlex.

Managing Cisco HyperFlex is heavenly. It's that easy.

BMA Infrastructure lead

"Our data center is compact and we have limited power," Ribeiro explains. "The way cables hook into Cisco HyperFlex is brilliant—only four cables per host and 72 per rack. The other solutions we evaluated required nine cables per host and 162 per rack."

Although the bank's new infrastructure takes up less space, requires fewer cables, and consumes less power, it delivers far more performance than its legacy environment.

"All-flash versus mechanical disks makes a huge difference," Ribeiro says. "We no longer worry about resource constraints or version compatibility."

The bank has also been able to establish full redundancy across its two data centers and empower its development team with container orchestration tools.

"We would never have put [Red Hat] OpenShift or other new solutions on the legacy infrastructure," Ribeiro says. "That would have been a nightmare."

Fast, effortless orchestration

No longer saddled with a monstrosity of an infrastructure, ATLANTICO's data center operations have become fast and simple. Virtual machine deployments that used to take two hours now take five to 10 minutes. And instead of a 10-person team focused on hardware monitoring and orchestration, three specialists are now managing the bank's two Cisco HyperFlex clusters—an effort that ATLANTICO's planned deployment of Cisco Intersight cloud operations platform will further simplify.

"We've been able to shift the other team members to application development, cloud operations, and other strategic initiatives," Ribeiro reports. "Managing Cisco HyperFlex is heavenly. It's that easy."

So easy, in fact, IT orchestration is now being extended beyond the data center team. ATLANTICO is in the process of creating a private cloud that will have self-service capabilities and enable other groups within the bank to spin up their own virtual machines.

"These are things we couldn't dream of doing with our legacy infrastructure, but we're doing them now," Ribeiro says. "I need to give credit to my team and our partners who have done the work to get these systems up and running. It's made a big difference in our ability to develop innovative digital solutions and enhance our customers' experience."