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This week, Ivan Zindovic, Agency Manager @ DAN Paris (TBWA Worldwide), tells us about his experience using Clever Cloud for a high traffic website : Batman VS Superman.

Can you introduce DAN Paris?

DAN Paris is a digital agency of the TBWA Group. We have created the brand DAN five years ago, we are located in Paris, are a team of 70 people and are focused in delivering digital solutions for the communication of our customers. DAN stands for Digital Art Network, it's the network of digital agencies at TBWA.

We have many different ways to collaborate with all the entities of the group. Sometimes we act as business introducer for design specialized agencies, sometimes they bring their own clients to us when they need digital solutions : apps, websites, social media, motion design...

What is your close future at DAN Paris?

We are shipping more and more mobile apps with IoT projects, many projects on bots and machine learning too. Our clients come to us with problems. We are the ones they hire to find solutions. That's why we do all this tech watch, research and development, etc... We work with a lot of very large companies.

Concerning the hosting part, what are your main challenges?

Most of the time, our customers want us to use their hosting provider or their own installations. In order to guarantee a certain level of service, we do our best to make the proper choices in terms of technology and of hosting providers. Many of our clients are still in a bare metal server way of thinking for their IT projects. That means each project is a new physical server I have to order, install, set up and obviously, I document each step of the process. All that is pretty useless.

We do, as much as possible, virtualized servers projects mostly because we, as a digital agency, have to be really reactive. So, we can't wait 3 weeks for a server to be operational when our clients ask us to ship something tomorrow.

How did you discover Clever Cloud and when did you start using it?

That's a long story but it ends well. In 2007, we started to make our first projects on virtualized machines. The leader at that moment was pretty reactive so we started to work with them. Even if there were virtual servers, upscaling was pretty easy but downscaling was not. Curiously... And every time, for each project, we had to set up a machine with a disk image. That was repetitive and useless. Most of the time, upscaling implied another server and therefore, we had to manage load balancing. We were mixing virtual and physical servers. Nonsensical. Video streaming was even more complicated... That partner started to become procedural with tons of documents to fill in even for the exact same servers or same architectures.

In 2009, a challenger landed on the market and looked way better than this first partner. They promised the implementation of "Chef" in order to industrialize our projects but, at the end, same problems: server is down, FTP is not working, that port is not open... Always something different from the previous project.

I saw a conference of Quentin Adam at Paris Web in 2009 about Javascript server-side and I found him brilliant. The next day, I followed him on Twitter. Soon after that, my hosting partner failed during a project. At that time, it was the very beginning of PaaS. The main problem was that I had to adapt my development to use their services. In addition, the per minute pricing grid was not very understandable for my clients.

A couple of months after, I heared a podcast with Quentin Adam explaining everything about Clever Cloud: automation, vertical and horizontal auto-scalability, blue/green deployments, no-human on production, own Linux distribution... I thought that guy is a genius, I need to try this out. Three clicks after that, my app was online and I had nothing to worry about.

To secure the load peaks, especially for the launch of the movie, we needed a very scalable platform. That's when I thought, this is it ; this is when we must use Clever Cloud.

Few months after, we have been reached by Warner Bros to offer a complete digital proposal for the release of the movie "Batman VS Superman". In order to secure the load peaks, especially for the launch of the movie, we needed a very scalable platform. That's when I thought, this is it ; this is when we must use Clever Cloud. Everything went perfectly. After that we started more and more projects on Clever Cloud and very soon, all our projects will be on Clever Cloud.

Did you save money or improve performances in comparison to your previous hosting provider?

We saved time. In our position, time is a lot of money. We saved projects. In our position, projects mean clients.

Was it simple to switch from your previous hosting provider?

Yes.

What do you like most on Clever Cloud?

It's simple.

What features are you expecting the most?

We are happy with the product as it is now. All the team loves it.

How would you describe Clever Cloud to someone who doesn't use it yet?

It's like electricity. You don't want to manage a nuclear power plant. You just want the light on. Same thing for apps on Clever Cloud. It's the aspirin of hosting: no more headaches.


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By Clément Nivolle

Chief Marketing Officer and co-founder of Clever Cloud. Clement is also in charge of the global user experience.