It’s relatively well-known that I’m a fan of “Third Platform” architectures, and how companies can leverage these emerging technologies to add public cloud agility and scalability to their own on-premises infrastructure.

FICO has long been an innovator in big data and analytics, helping companies in over a hundred countries combat fraud and make better business decisions through their software tools. When FICO launched their cloud service – the FICO Analytics Cloud – they needed a storage provider that could enable them to create a PaaS offering, analogous to what could be offered in the public cloud. Built on OpenStack, and Red Hat’s Openshift platform, FICO rapidly discovered that Ceph, whilst sufficient for general-purpose workloads, was unable to meet the needs of high-performance, tier 1 workloads.

Enter SolidFire. As the mighty Dave Hitz says, “SolidFire is storage for people that fucking hate storage…” The simplicity of SolidFire and their API-driven storage enabled FICO to easily meet their requirements for on-demand provisioning in a multi-tenant, private cloud architecture, whilst also being able to offer guaranteed SLAs against different workloads, including not only the customer workloads within OpenStack, but also FICO’s internal Horizon VDI estate, and multiple databases like MySQL, MongoDB, Oracle, and Couchbase.

Private clouds are notoriously hard to build—trust me, I’ve built a few—and FICO’s innovative use of SolidFire and Openshift/OpenStack has enabled them and their customers to provision and deploy Big Data applications up to 70% faster, with guaranteed SLAs, performance and reliability that give companies the ability to adopt cloud analytics with confidence.

I wish FICO the best of luck with this nomination, and hope to see them continue to innovate with cloud architectures and analytics in the future.

Disclaimer: I wrote this post for NetApp as part of their advocacy program and it originally appeared on netapp.com