Customer Story

AnyMind Group: Using Google Cloud technologies to grow professionals, businesses, and industries

Using Google Cloud Platform and G Suite, AnyMind Group enabled staff across Asia to collaborate effectively and run its various businesses and platforms on a highly available, agile, and cost-effective infrastructure.

Google Cloud Results

Automated scaling to accommodates 5X growth fluctuations in user numbers

• Enables the business to scale to support hundreds of new clients per week

• Gives team members the ability to collaborate across countries and regions

• Cuts staff time to provide document edits by up to 15 minutes

Founded slightly over two years ago as AdAsia Holdings, AnyMind Group is tapping into escalating demand across Asia for intelligent technologies in the advertising, marketing, and human resources industries. The business now has 330 staff in 13 offices across 11 markets in Asia, including China, Indonesia, Japan, Singapore, and Thailand.

AnyMind Group's three core businesses are AdAsia Holdings (AdAsia), an ad tech company providing solutions for advertisers and publishers; CastingAsia, an influencer marketing tech company with products for marketers and influencers; and TalentMind, a human resource tech company with solutions for human resource and recruitment professionals.

AdAsia's core products are one-stop solutions for advertisers and publishers and include the AdAsia Digital Platform for Advertisers, a platform for advertisers to manage and track their advertising activities; the AdAsia Digital Platform for Publishers, a yield management platform for online media owners; and the AdAsia Premium Marketplace, an outcome-based transactional environment that connects advertisers to ad inventory across Asia.

"The fact that Google had a presence in prominent markets like Singapore and Japan and could easily support our growth made the decision easy." - Ryuji Takemoto, Vice President of Engineering, AnyMind Group

CastingAsia's core product is a marketing platform that allows marketers to find, manage, communicate, and track influencers and influencer marketing activities. It does this through a marketplace for micro-influencers and an influencer discovery solution, delivering a one-stop solution for influencer marketing. CastingAsia is also the most-scaled influencer marketing solution in Asia, with local influencer marketing teams located in all major Asian markets.

TalentMind's flagship product allows human resource and recruitment professionals to manage, communicate, and analyze job candidates. The TalentMind platform features an applicant management system with layers of AI to screen and match job applicants to businesses. This will be further enhanced in the future to provide human resource professionals with a one-stop solution for their needs, from recruitment and payroll to employee development and evaluation.

Rapid expansion

Ahead of the organization's launch, its founders – industry veterans Kosuke Sogo and Otohiko Kozutsumi – knew they had to plan for rapid expansion into markets across the region. They needed intelligent workplace applications that could allow staff in Singapore and Japan, for example, to collaborate on business planning, new product launches, and other important tasks. In addition, they needed a stable, scalable infrastructure established across Asia that could meet client expectations while minimizing the maintenance and administration load on technology staff.

"Our founders were very familiar with and liked Google technologies," explains Ryuji Takemoto, Vice President of Engineering at AnyMind Group. "More generally, Google is widely trusted in Asia and there is a deep pool of knowledge about Google Cloud Platform and G Suite across the region."

"The fact that Google had a presence in prominent markets like Singapore and Japan and could easily support our growth made the decision easy," Takemoto adds.

Collaboration for quality outcomes

"App Engine enables us to easily deploy development, testing, staging, and production versions of each application, while giving our quality assurance team the ability to provide the necessary inputs." - Ryuji Takemoto, Vice President of Engineering, AnyMind Group

For Chris Lu, Regional Head of Communications, Culture Development at AnyMind Group, G Suite applications such as Slides, Sheets, and Docs presented an invaluable opportunity for cross-regional teams to work together and produce quality outcomes.

From the start, AnyMind Group launched its platforms and services on Google Cloud Platform and rolled out G Suite to its fast-growing workforce. As the company used Google Cloud Platform and G Suite from the start, all subsequent platforms, services, and staff were onboarded onto the Google products.

The business's Google Cloud Platform architecture comprises App Engine, Cloud SQL, Cloud Storage, Compute Engine, and Cloud Pub/Sub. Cloud SQL provides the relational database and Cloud Storage provides the file storage for the AdAsia Digital Platform. With Cloud Storage, the company can efficiently manage, store, and archive various data points from advertising campaign delivery on both the advertiser's end and publisher's end.

AnyMind Group uses App Engine to run the applications that deliver the features of its platforms and services. "App Engine enables us to easily deploy development, testing, staging, and production versions of each application, while giving our quality assurance team the ability to provide the necessary inputs," says Takemoto.

Compute Engine virtual machines run AdAsia's proxy servers and other systems, with Docker containers used to run systems and applications in isolated, easy-to-deploy, easy-to-scale, portable environments. Cloud Pub/Sub provides middleware enabling messaging between AdAsia's applications.

AnyMind Group staff are now using all the services available through G Suite, such as Drive to store and access documents; Gmail for email; Calendar to schedule appointments; Sheets to create and share spreadsheets; Docs to create and share documents; and Slides to create presentations.

Monthly updates

"The AnyMind Group core values are commitment, speed, and an adaptable mindset, and G Suite has truly enabled this, from mobile collaboration and discussion to almost instantaneous feedback and editing on presentations and documents." - Chris Lu, Regional Head, Communications, Culture Development, AnyMind Group

Lu singles out Hangouts Meet as key to keeping the company’s widely distributed workforce coordinated and up-to-date. "Hangouts Meet enables us to conduct monthly company-wide calls so staff in different countries can provide updates on business progress and are aligned with the company's direction and aware of new announcements," he says. "On a wider note, staff anywhere in Asia or beyond can make changes directly into a single presentation or document.

"Instead of waiting an average of 15 minutes for edits and email response on document edits, we are able to cut it down to real-time edits, responses, and simultaneous feedback."

"More broadly, the AnyMind Group core values are commitment, speed, and an adaptable mindset, and G Suite has truly enabled this, from mobile collaboration and discussion to almost instantaneous feedback and editing on presentations and documents," says Lu.

"Just over two years into our journey, it is hard for us to imagine achieving such scale without G Suite," adds Lu. "Our staff do not have to go outside the service to create documents, chat, conduct video calls, or schedule meetings."

Google Cloud Platform has also met all of AnyMind Group's technical and business requirements, including minimizing the number of team members needed for back-end administration and maintenance tasks. For example, App Engine enables the business to automate scaling to accommodate 5X growth fluctuations in user numbers, eliminating the need for manual intervention. "Google Cloud Platform allows us to avoid the costs of hiring a system administrator or a database administrator," explains Takemoto. "We need only one person to manage all our back-end processes."

In addition, the resources available to AnyMind Group through Google Cloud Platform mean the business can add 300 new clients in a week without compromising the speed and stability of its service.

With Google Cloud technologies well established and delivering value, AnyMind Group is continuing to grow rapidly. The business is still looking to expand its geographical reach, along with the number of industries to drive — with a stable base infrastructure to match the scaling. "Google Cloud Platform and G Suite have allowed us to reach our current position and we look forward to doing more with both product sets as their services evolve every month," says Lu.

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