Autentica is a technology company committed to empowering and safeguarding the creators of the world. With the help of blockchain technology, they have created a three-dimensional ecosystem helping people create, buy, and sell authentic digital assets.
The business function of their company, the Autentica Industrial Platform, provides a secure additive manufacturing ecosystem and digital spare parts supply chain for various industries, specifically catering to the 3D printing and aftermarket sectors. Autentica serves a diverse range of sectors, including automotive, space, aerospace, defense, health, and life sciences.
Autenica’s mission is to spearhead transformative change within these industries, fostering a new era of efficiency, security, and innovation. They’re deeply focused on redefining conventional practices and introducing ground-breaking approaches that not only streamline manufacturing processes, but also safeguard the invaluable intellectual property and digital assets of their clients. With a foundation built on innovation, Autentica’s vision is to propel these sectors into a more dynamic and secure future, ensuring the continued growth and success of their clients and partners.
Autentica’s key differentiators
The Autentica Platform Click-to-Print Experience for 3D-printed parts stands out in their markets due to Autentica’s unique strategies and key differentiators. Unlike their competitors, who are primarily focused on developing digital inventories for digital files, Autentica has taken a ground-breaking approach. They’re pioneering a whole new business model that revolves around the sale, export, and production of 3D-printed parts.
Autentica’s differentiators and strategies include the following examples:
- Web3 e-commerce marketplace: One of Autentica’s key differentiators is the creation of a Web3 e-commerce marketplace. Just like industry giants such as eBay or Amazon have revolutionized traditional e-commerce, Autentica has brought innovation to their markets by establishing a similar marketplace. What sets Autentica apart is their exclusive focus on nonfungible token (NFT)-backed 3D printed parts within this marketplace. This unique approach introduces a new level of security, traceability, and authenticity to the 3D printing industry.
- Unified ecosystem: Autentica has developed a unified ecosystem that seamlessly connects original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), buyers, and 3D printing service providers. This interconnected approach not only streamlines the supply chain, but also fosters collaboration and efficiency among the key players in the 3D printing and aftermarket sectors. This unity ensures that everyone involved benefits from improved access to high-quality 3D-printed parts and a simplified, transparent process.
Autentica’s distinctiveness lies in their departure from the conventional and their embracement of cutting-edge technologies, like NFTs, blockchain, artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), industrial internet of things (IoT), cloud infrastructure, and Web3, to create a transformative marketplace. Autentica’s strategic focus on providing a unified ecosystem promotes collaboration and innovation, ultimately redefining the way 3D-printed parts are sold, exported, and produced in their markets.
Goals for cloud migration
The primary goals of the project Autentica undertook with Oracle were to create a proof of concept (PoC) to test and evaluate the viability and effectiveness of new technologies in the context of 3D printed parts. This project included the following specific objectives:
- Blockchain integration: To assess how blockchain technology could be incorporated into Autentica’s supply chain and e-commerce platform to enhance transparency, traceability, and security for 3D-printed parts.
- NFT implementation: To investigate the use of NFTs as a means of authenticating and certifying the origin and quality of 3D-printed parts. This implementation aimed to boost customer trust and confidence.
- AI utilization: To explore the application of AI in optimizing various aspects of Autentica’s operations, such as demand forecasting, quality control, and customer service, with the goal of improving efficiency and decision-making.
- API integration: To assess the benefits of integrating various application programming interfaces (APIs) to streamline interactions between different components of their platform, enhancing connectivity and functionality.
- Gateway for streaming digital files: To develop a gateway for streaming digital files, making it easier for users to access and work with digital files related to 3D-printed parts. This goal aimed to improve user experience and accessibility.
The overall objective of this project was to use Oracle's technology stack and expertise to test and implement these cutting-edge technologies and determine their feasibility and practicality in enhancing Autentica’s platform for 3D-printed parts. This PoC aimed to pave the way for innovative solutions that could revolutionize the way 3D-printed parts are manufactured, sold, and authenticated in their target sectors.
The deployment of Autentica’s project, including the PoC, took approximately 11 months. The decision to prioritize conducting a PoC before full-scale production was highly beneficial for the following reasons:
- Pitfall identification: The PoC phase allowed Autentica to identify and address potential pitfalls and challenges early in the process. It served as a testing ground to uncover any issues or limitations in the technology stack and integration.
- Assurance of technology and integration: By deploying the PoC, they gained a high degree of confidence that the selected technologies and integrations would work effectively at a larger scale. It provided evidence that the chosen solutions could meet the demands of Autentica’s business model and operations.
- Risk mitigation: The PoC helped in mitigating risks associated with the full-scale deployment. It enabled Autentica to fine-tune and optimize the technology stack and infrastructure, reducing the chances of unexpected issues during production.
- Efficiency and cost savings: The lessons learned during the PoC allowed Autentica to refine their approach, making the full deployment more efficient and cost-effective. It saved resources that might have been wasted if they had directly gone into production without testing.
The 11-month deployment timeline included a PoC phase that was instrumental in identifying potential pitfalls, providing assurance of technology and integration, mitigating risks, and ultimately ensuring a smoother and more cost-effective transition to full-scale production.
Why Autentica chose Oracle
Autentica chose Oracle Cloud Infrastructure (OCI) to help overcome the challenges and complexities they were experiencing for the following reasons:
- Expertise and support: The Oracle team impressed Autentica with their professionalism and expertise. The in-depth knowledge and commitment to providing coinnovation consulting teams made Oracle stand out. This level of support was crucial for Autentica’s project’s success.
- Cost savings and efficiency: OCI offered competitive pricing and cost-saving opportunities, which was important for managing Autentica’s budget effectively. They found that the pricing structure and options aligned well with their business needs.
- Better performance: OCI provided the desired features and capabilities that were essential to Autentica’s project. These features contributed to better performance and operational efficiency.
- Comprehensive cloud support: OCI’s support was robust and comprehensive. Autentica knew that they could rely on Oracle’s assistance for any technical issues, which was essential given their previous challenges.
- Value extension of Oracle licenses: For organizations that already have Oracle licenses, OCI offered a way to extend the value of these licenses. So, Autentica could use their existing investments in Oracle technologies.
- Infrastructure upgrade: Autentica’s aging infrastructure required upgrades and modernization. OCI allowed them to transition smoothly and address these complexities by providing state-of-the-art technology and a scalable platform.
- Dissatisfaction with previous Cloud providers: Autentica’s previous cloud providers, such as Amazon Web Service (AWS) and Google Cloud, didn’t offer the wanted value and support they needed, especially in terms of coinnovation and tailored assistance.
“Oracle Cloud Infrastructure was chosen due to its combination of expertise, cost-efficiency, performance, comprehensive support, value extension for existing Oracle Licenses, and the ability to address upgrade complexities. These factors made Oracle the preferred choice over other cloud providers and align with our project's objectives and needs,” said Irma Gilbert, CEO at Autentica.
Suite of Oracle products used
OCI includes all the services needed to migrate, build, and run IT in the cloud, from existing enterprise workloads to new cloud native applications and data platforms.
Within OCI, Autentica has deployed the OCI Blockchain Platform. This specific infrastructure service is utilized to support workloads related to the implementation of blockchain technology.
The deployment of OCI Blockchain Platform enables Autentica to explore and harness the potential of blockchain for enhancing the authenticity, security, and traceability of 3D-printed parts within their supply chain and e-commerce platform. This service supports workloads associated with blockchain technology, ensuring the verification and certification of the origin and quality of 3D-printed parts, particularly in sectors like automotive, space, aerospace, defense, health, and life sciences. It plays a crucial role in providing transparency and trust in Autentica’s operations and transactions, benefiting both the company and their customers.
Autentica’s journey to the cloud with Oracle was a strategic and carefully planned transition that initiated with a recognition of the need to modernize their infrastructure and address the technical challenges they were facing. Their journey is outlined in the following steps:
- Identification of challenges: The first step was to identify the key technical challenges their company was facing, including a lack of knowledge in areas like cloud architecture, NFTs, blockchain, and Web3 e-commerce. Autentica realized they needed a transformative solution to address their challenges.
- Evaluation of cloud providers: Autentica assessed various cloud providers, including Oracle, AWS, and Google Cloud, to determine which would best suit their needs. This evaluation involved considering their capabilities, support, pricing, and services.
- Selection of OCI: Ultimately, Autentica chose OCI for its strong support, coinnovation teams, competitive pricing, and its ability to address the specific challenges they faced.
- Prioritization of workload types: With OCI selected, Autentica conducted an in-depth assessment of their existing workloads and identified which workloads would benefit the most from the transition to the cloud.
- High-priority workloads: Autentica prioritized the following workload types to move to the cloud first:
- E-commerce platform: Given the importance of Autentica’s e-commerce platform in connecting OEMs, buyers, and 3D printing service providers, this high-priority workload needed to enhance its performance, security, and efficiency.
- Supply chain and inventory management: These workloads were crucial for optimizing their operations and ensuring smooth supply chain management.
- 3D printing file repository: Autentica’s repository of digital files related to 3D-printed parts was critical and transitioning it to the cloud allowed for easier accessibility and management.
- Migration and optimization: Autentica then proceeded with the migration of these workloads to OCI. The migration process involved a combination of rehosting, replatforming, and refactoring to ensure optimal performance and efficiency.
- Ongoing expansion: After the successful migration of these priority workloads, Autentica continued to expand their cloud adoption by moving other workloads and systems to OCI, progressively benefiting from its capabilities and support.
Autentica’s journey to the cloud with Oracle has been marked by a systematic approach, starting with the identification of challenges, selecting the right cloud provider, prioritizing key workload types, and continuously expanding their cloud presence. This transition has allowed Autentica to address technical challenges, improve operational efficiency, and utilize innovative technologies to transform their business.
Figure 2: The architecture of Autentica’s deployment.
The full platform minimum viable product (MVP) was designed and delivered in three months. Using the compact and pragmatic OC Innovation Service, the Oracle Consulting Services team translated Autentica’s idea into a technical architecture, designed and developed it, always looking for improvements along the way. Autentica also used automatized solutions, such as Oracle APEX and Oracle Autonomous Database, to fully automate some manual functions.
After migrating to OCI, Autentica is experiencing improved performance, faster time to market, and 70% cost savings. Oracle delivers built-in security at no extra cost, which also helps to cut down costs. OCI offered Autentica a flexible payment model and the superior price-performance enables them to scale revenue without scaling costs at the same time.
Because the platform is almost fully automatized, Autentica’s IT team can spend more time on development and improvements of the frontend NFT marketplace. With Oracle Autonomous Database, all the patching, upgrading, and maintenance of their data is handled by Oracle, which enables Autentica’s team to focus on development.
The second phase in this project is going from MVP to full production environment, plus adding new features in the roadmap. Autentica wants to be able to fully track if any disruption in the supply chain occurs so they can always improve the customer’s experience. They also want to expand to new industries, such as healthcare.
For more information on Autentica and Oracle Cloud Infrastructure, see the following resources:
- Learn more about Autentica’s offerings
- Explore other technical case studies from OCI
- Try Oracle Cloud for yourself
The authors want to thank Irma Gilbert, CEO at Autentica, for her contributions.