Spanish supermarket adopts Kubernetes and microservices

Spanish supermarket chain Condis Supermarcats sought to better integrate its IT infrastructure to improve communication with its customers and systems. Using Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform, the company implemented a Kubernetes- and container-based microservices environment. This scalable, integrated environment helps Condis offer an improved omnichannel customer experience and simplify complex new projects.

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  • Improved  IT infrastructure integration
  • Built Kubernetes and container-based foundation for development of new, microservices-based projects 
  • Enhanced customer and franchise service

Integrating infrastructure for more effective system communication 

Founded in 1961, Condis Supermarcats is a family-owned supermarket chain that is a household name in central and northern Spain. The company operates more than 400 physical storefronts, ranging from hypermarkets to local convenience stores, and a growing digital business.

In 2017, Condis began several high-profile projects as part of its digital transformation efforts, including launch of a new customer resource management (CRM) system and a customer-facing mobile application. To support these projects, Condis’s IT team sought to better integrate the company’s IT infrastructure with microservices.

“Our architecture was not cloud-integrated or suited for the agile approach we needed to develop our digital business,” said Sergio Murillo, Technology Development and IT Operations Manager at Condis. “For example, each Condis store has access to a customer database, centralized using a cloud-based tool. However, we needed this data exchange to be integrated seamlessly with our CRM.”

Additionally, as its digital business grows, Condis needed a solution that could automatically scale as requirements change. “We wanted a cloud-like architecture, where we could allocate resources based on our needs at different times,” said Murillo.

Bridging legacy and modern I.T. with red hat openshift container platform

Condis worked with Mindcurv, a Red Hat Advanced Solution Provider Partner, to design and implement a microservices environment based on Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform and Kubernetes. As a long-time customer of Red Hat, Condis’s use of Oracle databases led it to change its operating system to Red Hat Enterprise Linux. The company wanted to take advantage of Red Hat’s Kubernetes capabilities and enterprise support.

“We could see OpenShift allowing quicker and more flexible development of applications in Kubernetes-based container environments, backed by the assurance that we could work through any implementation issues,” said Murillo.

Mindcurv also supplied a full monitoring layer for application, logs, traces, and metrics, as well as alert and control systems for both the OpenShift cluster and applications deployed there. Red Hat Enterprise Linux provides IPA (Identity, Policy, Audit) authentication, as well as support for a continuous delivery (CD) development approach.

“Mindcurv’s service has been excellent. This project has had many more aspects than we originally anticipated, capabilities that we subsequently realized were necessary to grow in an ordered and logical way. Mindcurv anticipated and helped us meet those needs,” said Murillo.

Implementation of OpenShift-based microservices was completed quickly and operational just 3 months later. The new environment has helped Condis successfully bridge its legacy IT systems with its more modern but closed-source Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) database.

Supporting an omnichannel business approach with containers and microservices

Improved IT infrastructure integration

Creating a modern, integrated IT infrastructure with Red Hat OpenShift has helped Condis better support its physical stores and respond quickly to digital business opportunities as part of its multichannel strategy. 

With microservices-based business functions connecting its CRM project, mobile app, and other initiatives, Condis can ensure accurate information is quickly shared across its many internal and customer-facing systems.

Built microservices foundation for new, innovative services

With its container-based microservices environment, Condis has simplified development of new projects and initiatives that would otherwise be highly complex. For example, customers can now obtain paperless receipts for their purchases from the company’s mobile app in real time, rather than the previous time of 24 hours.

This efficient support for digital service projects helps the company deliver new features and capabilities faster, strengthening its corporate reputation for innovation. 

Enhanced customer and franchise support

Condis has now achieved full integration of its call-center system with its CRM, including its internal ticketing system for customer incidents—an achievement that would not have been possible without OpenShift. With a comprehensive view of its business, Condis can better support its franchise stores, manage order logistics, and solve customer issues.

“Even though our OpenShift-based microservices layer might not directly increase sales, it helps us create a more approachable, customer-friendly brand,” said Murillo.

Building new projects on an enterprise open source foundation from Red Hat

The success of Condis’s initial CRM microservices project has been viewed positively across the business, as an example of the potential positive effect of IT improvements on retail operations.

Condis plans to expand its OpenShift environment to support innovative future projects, such as the launch of a new application.

“Red Hat OpenShift technology is at the heart of everything we’ve done since we first deployed it,” said Murillo. “It has lived up  its reputation as a stable, scalable platform for innovative work.”

About Condis Supermercats

Condis is a supermarket chain and a family business founded in 1961 with a mixed model based on its stores and franchises. It specializes in city and express supermarkets, with a network covering Catalonia, Aragon, Madrid, and central Spain. Condis aims to provide customers with approachable and high-quality service, low prices,  and comfort, all of which are the key to its success over 50 years.