Case Study

Pestana Group adopts e-commerce Cloud solution

Create IT helped Pestana Group to meet the challenges of growth and internationalization with the migration of their portals and infrastructure to the Cloud.
About the Client

The Pestana Group, with more than 45 years of experience, has developed throughout it's history it's main activity in the tourism sector. With diversified presence in various areas, is the portuguese leader in the area of tourism and leisure. The group currently manages more than 90 units, between hotels and inns, spread across 15 countries, as well as 6 Golf courses and several tourist resorts. This portfolio was built based on strict principles of sustainability, adding value and preserving resources for future generations.

Key numbers

dedicated professionals
3 million
guests per year
The Challenge

Pestana Group intended to create "the best and the most innovative website in the world for a hotel chain". This was the request presented to Create IT, a Microsoft Gold Certified Partner. But this was a challenge with several underlying requirements, explains Nuno Guerra, founding partner at Create IT."In addition to the continued growth of Pestana Group operations nationwide, there was the volume of traffic and business generated by international operations and mobile users." And also the new image and new approach with the creation of several "Hotel Brands".

"It has become particularly relevant the agility to provide the tech infrastructure needed to support the launch of a new hotel, regardless of its location," he explains. "It was necessary to ensure an excellent access, reinforce customer loyalty, and use an omni-channel approach".

The Solution

In order to streamline the use of the Group portals from different geographies (approximately 80% of accesses), Create IT implemented a solution focused on two migrations to the Cloud: on the one hand, the infrastructure of Pestana portals; on the other, the e-commerce portals, both with Microsoft Azure platform (Infrastructure-as-a-Service model).

Five of the Group's portals were migrated:

  • Pestana Hotels & Resorts;
  • Pousadas de Portugal;
  • Pestana Priority Guest;
  • Pestana Travel (portal for agencies)
  • Pestana Corporate (portal for companies).

This migration (including web sites, mobile sites and apps) allowed scalability with controlled costs and simplified management. In terms of infrastructure, it helped to improve responsiveness even in times of overload. According to João Machado, Information Systems Director at Pestana Group, "the project consisted in providing a platform that did not create limitations to the overall development of the Group. Using Microsoft Cloud - Windows Azure, associated with Create IT know-how, enabled the geographical distribution, stability and growth that the Group needed to have in terms of technology."

Nuno Guerra adds that "centralized and simplified back-office management allowed a reduction in operational costs". The implemented solution is a hybrid solution that uses Microsoft SharePoint 2013 combined with Windows Azure and simultaneously integrates multiple systems, including Opera Reservation System, SAP, Microsoft CRM and multiple distribution channels and payment methods. This integration with internal systems "required a lot of work in terms of software engineering."

The Results

Pestana Group now has a solution that supports its business "in the most important geographical locations", Nuno Guerra referred. "Through this new solution, it was possible to decrease to about half the load time of pages from markets such as Brazil, which is growing fast. In addition, the inclusion of a new hotel or site for a specific market and/or language is really fast. After producing the contents, it's a matter of days to be completely available, both in terms of business support and e-commerce". Pestana Group was able to increase the revenue ratio vs volume of traffic on their sites.

With this implementation, Create IT was finalist in the European Microsoft SharePoint Awards in the category of "Most Innovative Cloud Solution".