Energy-efficient MatrixCube is a great fit with the Van Marcke CO2-neutral warehouse
Van Marcke is a Belgian company with family shareholders. It was founded in 1929 by Raymond Van Marcke in Kortrijk and is now managed by Caroline Van Marcke. The company has 1,400 employees and is active in the Netherlands, France, Luxembourg, Switzerland, Malta and the USA. Minkels Magazine spoke with Guido Gruwez (IT professional with Van Marcke) about the (IT) challenges Van Marcke is facing and the solution the company has found in the MatrixCube.
PLUMBING AND CENTRAL HEATING
In Belgium, Van Marcke is the market leader in the specialised distribution of plumbing and central heating products. Gruwez: “Our customers are mostly fitters, but we also sell our products to consumers in our showrooms. We are well known as a global challenger in heating and water. Recently, we opened an outlet in Switzerland and we acquired the company CFM in Luxembourg – also a specialised wholesaler in plumbing and heating – with a hundred employees. We currently have twenty outlets in Northern France. In the US we have 4 outlets in Nevada (Las Vegas), 10 in Arizona and another 6 in Texas (Dallas). What’s more, we are expanding in more and more countries due to the sales of private label products.”
Van Marcke knows how to grow rapidly. The distributor does so by continuously adapting to changes in the market. “Now that e-commerce is becoming more common place, fast delivery is a priority. We also take the environmental factors into account. Thus, we are currently building a new, CO2-neutral, 80,000 m2 warehouse in Belgium. We were looking for a suitable, energy-efficient micro data centre for the building. I first saw the MatrixCube at a trade fair and thought it was an interesting concept from the outset. Now that servers are becoming more powerful, you need less and less rack space to run all your applications. Where we used to need five or 6 racks, now we only need a micro data centre with two racks. The main advantage of the MatrixCube is its energy usage. The solution is also very plug-and-play. You simply place the MatrixCube in a regular, open space that doesn’t need to be cooled or finished. Then, you hook up two cables for power and data cables, and you’re all finished.... Once it is set up, you will enjoy worry-free operation!”
Besides convenience, Gruwez is also very impressed with the value for money. “The value you get for the money is excellent when compared to a standard solution, where you must equip the space with insulation, security, fire suppression equipment and raised floors. Even other micro data centres were no match for the benefits of the MatrixCube for us. The MatrixCube is a fully comprehensive solution for us – equipped with monitoring, Legrand UPS units, Raritan PDUs and a fire suppression system. We currently have two MatrixCubes in use to our full satisfaction, with an option for a third. In addition, I already see possibilities for the smaller Minkels micro data centre: the MiniCube!”