ICICI Bank is India’s second-largest bank with total assets of $100 billion as of December 31, 2008. With a presence in 18 countries, it has a network of 1,419 branches and about 4,644 ATMs in India alone. ICICI Bank offers a wide range of banking products and financial services to corporate and retail customers through a variety of delivery channels, including the Web.
Online Trading System Bridging IT Platforms
As the largest retail stock brokerage franchise in India, ICICI Securities Ltd- which includes the retail equity booking part of ICICI Bank-set out to build an online trading platform for booking. Stock trading at ICICI securities had grown in terms of daily turnover at a CAGR of 114 percent in the space of four years. Establishing an online presence to support this growth just made sense.
"We started building the online trading capabilities for booking using Tuxedo," says Yagnesh Parikh, Senior VP and IT head at ICICI Securities, who was given responsibility for the trading platform.
Marketed by Oracle (earlier BEA), Tuxedo is a middleware platform used to manage distributed transaction processing in distributed computing environments. "We wanted to establish real-time operations running an extremely high number of transactions," Parikh says. "Our challenge was getting Tuxedo talking to our settlement module."
While Tuxedo ran AIX UNIX platform connecting Oracle, also on an AIX UNIX platform, the accounting module used Microsoft SQL Server database on Windows Server as its backoffice.
"The Windows platform provides several ODBC connectors," says Parikh. "But nothing provided connectivity from UNIX applications to SQL Server."
High-Quality Wire Protocol Drivers
"Our technology partner checked with its Australian operation, which had a similar systems configuration," Parikh recalls. "They recommended what they'd been using—third-party ODBC database drivers from Progress® DataDirect®."
Offering the broadest platform support of any data connectivity vendor, Progress DataDirect had the standards-based database driver they sought: Progress® DataDirect Connect® for ODBC drivers, which ICICI decided to go with. The DataDirect wire protocol drivers provide the highest performance ODBC connectivity without requiring time-consuming installation of the client libraries required by many commercially available or native ODBC connectivity solutions. Available to support all major databases and OS platforms, DataDirect Connect for ODBC drivers are proven, reliable drivers backed by award-winning support.
"We installed the driver and were connected to the SQL Server database in one or two days without any problem," Parikh reports. "It was fast to deploy, and it worked."
Up To 500,000 Transactions a Day
Today the ICICI Securities' retail equity brokerage online system, called "ICICIdirect.com," has 18 million customers and processes roughly 500,000 online transactions ever day. By using the DataDirect Connect for ODBC drivers, customers benefit from streamlined processes based on a sound technological backbone that is designed to provide best-in-class service.
"The DataDirect driver is fast, reliable, bug-free, and once implemented works smoothly," says Parikh. "It's one of the best products we have seen."