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Igmar Rautenbach
Head: B2B Solutions at Trustlink (Pty) Ltd
Real User
Top 5Leaderboard
Good documentation, strong security functionality and offers great flexibility
Pros and Cons
  • "There's drag and drop functionality so that you do not need to have a senior expert developer to make use of the tool. You can get more of your staff trained up to be able to use it as it's not overly technical."
  • "The installation process is a bit complex and it could be a lot simpler."

What is our primary use case?

We make use of Axway's API gateway API management tool.

Its integration with middle wear is similar to ESB. We provide integrations as we are a swift services bureau. We've got customers that are banks and in some use cases. We integrate these banks with their own back office and we tend to provide integration for that. 

We also make use of the solution to build a marketplace of financial services, which is basically our own solution. 

For other customers, we do integration of the various source systems, back-office systems, legacy systems, etc. We also do file transformation where we take messages for customers in their environments and translate it to industry formats. 

What is most valuable?

There's drag and drop functionality so that you do not need to have a senior expert developer to make use of the tool. You can get more of your staff trained up to be able to use it as it's not overly technical. 

It provides very strong security functionality to protect information in an easier way. 

It's more of a benchmark for financial services. You can better protect the information and customer information as it's got a very strong focus on security. 

The flexibility is very good. You can do on-premise and you can do cloud. That's really a strong factor in our market as many large customers in our market still want to have an on-premise solution due to the fact that they want to maintain control over their data.

Previously, the solution did not have a subscription as an option, however, now it also has a subscription model, which is great.

The documentation is fairly good and readily available.

What needs improvement?

The pricing could be more competitive. 

The installation process is a bit complex and it could be a lot simpler.

Currently, there's a strong focus on microservices, which is already there and already available. They're already able to deploy in dockerized containers. In that sense, there's nothing that I can actually see that is missing from my side.

For how long have I used the solution?

We've been dealing with the solution for the last three years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The product has got strong security features, from a stability point of view. There's a large footprint in the financial services sector, where you deal with daily transactions in the millions. It has a very strong focus on stability, and our experience as well has been that, as we also use it in a payments environment, it's been proven to be quite stable. 

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We have probably eight people who make use of the solution in our organization.

It is a solution that is strong enough to be used by enterprise-level customers. That is the target market. However, it provides such strong features, that it is used in our environment by FinTech startups, and also by other mid-range customers that are not really at the enterprise level. It solves their issue of integration and to decouple their back-office systems so that they can develop one in a specific area, and make their system changes. It's a very versatile product; many organizations can benefit from it.

The solution is scalable. That is a benefit of the platform in itself. It provides you with scalability so that you don't have to develop all your back-office systems. The product itself is scalable in the sense that you can spin up additional environments very quickly. 

Its price scalability is also very good as you don't necessarily pay for extra usage. You pay a fixed subscription. In terms of dealing with high volumes, it is also scalable in the sense that you can just add processing capacity where you need to.

How are customer service and technical support?

We actually provide support to customers. We provide remote support as well as on-premise support. From a support point of view, we are happy, as it provides a lot of analytics. With the analytics, you can very quickly drill through transactions and see where there are issues. 

We don't foresee any difficulty with the support of the solution, and we are support providers. It's always important to have someone, to have a vendor that provides you with at least level three support so that your operational teams can be at their best productivity-wise.

The support desk is very good. I deal with them regularly. You raise a ticket as normal and they will then guide you through to a resolution.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is a bit complex. 

It is now Dockerized containers. That makes the whole process of installation and upgrades much more simplified. Their version 7.7, the last version, means that from here on there will not be a big change. You have to completely build an environment, however, after that, you will only patch it. 

It's software that has complexity. It's a middleware system that is set up in various environments, however, it needs to align with the corporate policies on security and DMZ. You have to design it and then you have to build it. You probably will be okay during implementation if you make use of certified technicians to assist you with building the solution.

The positive with the solution is that, once you are operational, you should be able to maintain the solution with a very small team. There are instances where there's a footprint of multiple installations - more than 20 for a global organization. Yet, they've got just one core team that actually maintains all of those installations. That illustrates the sort of scalability it has when it comes to supporting a large footprint.

If our clients need it, we can provide maintenance for them. We can do tasks such as patching, updates, etc. Customers, of course, can also handle maintenance themselves.

What about the implementation team?

It's best to get a professional technician to handle the installation as you want to make sure that it's configured correctly to get the best use out of it. Once you are operational, you can really make use of your own skills to maintain it.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

The pricing is fair. They're still investing in development and provide much-needed functionality and with the assurance that it will not leak your data or provide you with gaps in your risk. From a pricing point of view, I don't think it's on the high side. I would say it's a mid-market price and there's flexibility in their pricing options. 

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We evaluated a number of API solutions, including WSO2, Apigee, and IBM and in the typical use cases where we deal with enterprise and financial customers. We found that some of the solutions either did not have good enough documentation, good enough support or maybe a lack of on-premise functionality. Pricing on some options was also an issue. We made the decision to use Axway after looking at it and others across these and a variety of other parameters.

For example, in the case of WSO2, our Financial Services client made use of it, however, for us, it was very difficult to understand and to problem solve that solution, and documentation played a role as it wasn't the best. 

We're also partners with IBM. The platform for us, the number one issue, is its price. On top of that, it's really more for the adoption in a mid-market space. 

We looked at Apigee and others where it's more power-orientated and that doesn't solve the problem that financial services, healthcare, and other vendors had as they wanted to have better security and have the data in on-premise.

What we found, in the European market at least, was that Axway has very strong links to financial services, transport logistics, healthcare, and banks. These are its primary industries. For us, it was important that the solution we chose had a strong knowledge base across those industries, and not only focused on a specific industry.

Some of the other vendors have got a very wide focus. For us it was easier to find agreements when looking at Axway's Roadmap. It was really important to see, that the business is focused around the solution and they execute on their Roadmap and develop out the solution continuously.

What other advice do I have?

We're largely a customer, although we are consultants and refer Axway often.

While we use the solution's cloud deployment model, we also engage with the on-premises version as well.

I'd advise other companies considering a solution like this to first go and determine their strategy around APIs in their business. That's really important. There needs to be a plan around how a company is going to manage APIs. A business needs to ask itself: What is the digital transformation strategy? They need to approach this as a strategic investment and already have some strategy behind it. 

It really is core to your digital transformation, to your ability to unlock new revenue channels for a lot of businesses or to reduce cost in your back office systems. Therefore, there must be some sort of strategic benefit that you see before you actually evaluate API platforms. 

Once you've got a strategy, you're sure that this matches your strategy. You probably need to also look at the first use cases that you want to do. You have to find a use case that shows a business benefit to deploying. It doesn't help you implement the solution just so that lots of people can use it for different things. You must find some anchor or use case that you will be able to sell. Then it will become a benefit to your internal business.

From there on it's really, really important to identify integration partners that are certified that can actually assist you from a business point of view, to deploy quickly. The quicker you get the benefit, the quicker you get the new revenue from whatever you want it to do. After that, it's crucial to internalize the knowledge around the solution. It is important to do good skills transfer so that you can have confidence in using the solution long-term.

Overall, I would rate the solution nine out of ten.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Private Cloud

If public cloud, private cloud, or hybrid cloud, which cloud provider do you use?

Amazon Web Services (AWS)
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Dries Vanmarcke
Technical Architect at Colruyt
Real User
Top 5
Secure, good monitoring capabilities, and the automation gives us a competitive advantage
Pros and Cons
  • "This solution has given us a competitive advantage because we have better automation and insight."
  • "With respect to the API gateway, the runtime component, the stability after a new release is something that can be improved."

What is our primary use case?

This solution is primarily used for protecting our APIs and web services. All of our APIs are exposed to the outside world, so our internal network is protected by the API gateway. Our landscape inside the company is also divided into different domains and if you go from one domain to another domain, we also want the APIs to be protected.

We have two servers with an API gateway and a load balancer in front of it.

We also use this solution for monitoring, to know how many transactions we have had and who is using our API. These are the runtime capabilities.

Another thing we use this product for is governance, to govern the lifecycle of our API services. It will tell us the state of the service, who is responsible for it, what deliverables belong to that stage, and we also have some quality checkpoints inside the lifecycle.

How has it helped my organization?

With respect to the end-to-end lifecycle management of APIs, this product is very good, feature-wise. We have the ability to govern the end-to-end lifecycle; in the different states, we can do the necessary customization and add our own flavor. This helps us very well in maintaining it.

The API governance capabilities for enforcing standards and security policies are quite good. However, it is a new product that started a few years ago, and you can sometimes tell that it is new and still evolving. For example, there are some bugs and problems that are still being fixed as it is further developed. They are evolving the features and we are happy with the product, but there can be more issues that arise as things change.

These quality checkpoints allow us to have a central team that reviews the deliverables of the service. In the Design phase, for instance, we will review the REST API interface to see if it matches our standards.

This solution has enabled us to create new channels for growth because we can quickly introduce new APIs. Sometimes, you need to quickly set up a marketing campaign with an application that needs to happen fast. The API gateway allows us to introduce APIs that are still good and protected but in a fast way.

We have a good overview of all of our APIs, including who is providing them and who consuming them, which allows us to better work together to resolve issues before they emerge. For example, if there are changes made, we have a better view of the impact and the team can start discussing it. Also, if we are deprecating services and removing them, we know who is using these APIs and they can be contacted in advance.

Another important point is that when a new application wants to use an API, it can provide the necessary information such as the number of transactions. With this knowledge, the provider can adapt accordingly and it will be possible to add it.

Using the product has provided us with a structured API management program. Because we have governance and knowledge about all of the APIs, we have a better overview. Knowing who is using an API, or who is going to use it, means that it is easier to introduce new things.

This solution has given us a competitive advantage because we have better automation and insight. Without it, a lot of automation would not be possible, and doing it manually would take more time.

More generally, this API gateway has improved the way our organization functions because it allows us to enable more partner integrations. Until now, most of our business-to-business integrations were going over EDI. With API instead, it will allow us to onboard other partners. The reason for this is that EDI is a very heavy format, which is very expensive. As a retail company, EDI is affordable when you have a large vendor. But sometimes we have smaller vendors, and if we force them to use EDI, it will sometimes block the ability to sell products to us because they can't afford the complete functionality of sending invoices or receiving orders.

What we are now doing with API management is to make the order and invoicing systems available via API. These smaller vendors can then use these APIs to send an invoice or to receive an order.

What is most valuable?

The two most important features are the lifecycle and the protection of your APIs.

On the topic of protecting your APIs, every API management solution has that, which is the core business. Without it, you don't have an API gateway and it's the basic setup that every API management solution needs. Of course, protecting your APIs is very important.

With respect to the lifecycle, it is helpful because, in our business, we find it important to have an overview of all of our APIs and to guide our different roles, including architects and solution developers, in the necessary work for delivering a web service. Depending on the type of service, we also want to govern the quality. We don't do it for all APIs but for some categories, we find it very important that the quality is at a high level. This means that we want to govern that and to review it.

In these aspects, this solution helps us.

What needs improvement?

In relation to the lifecycle features, the user interface and the performance can be improved. It is not the quickest application and the user interface is not most up to date. It's a tool that has existed for quite some time, and there haven't been a lot of improvements.

With respect to the API gateway, the runtime component, the stability after a new release is something that can be improved.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been working with the webMethods API Gateway for approximately four years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

Once the system is set up and configured properly, it's stable. We don't have outages and it runs very well.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

There are two ways to scale this product, and both of them are easy to do. The first is to add another server to your cluster, and the second way is to add more CPU power.

How are customer service and technical support?

I would rate the technical support medium-high. It is comparable with other companies; not worse, but not especially better.

In general, I am happy with the support but my complaints are about the timing. Specifically, if your issue can be handled by the first line then you get feedback quickly. However, if the issue is complex then it needs to go to R&D and it takes time. This is the same experience that I have with other companies.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We did not use another similar solution prior to this one.

How was the initial setup?

The installation and initial setup are complex. It is not possible to just keep clicking the Next button during the setup. You need to configure the system such that it works best for your environment. You should plan for deployment over three to six months, at least.

My advice is to involve a consultant from Software AG to help you with the setup. Of course, this is an on-premises situation. In the cloud, I don't know how easy or difficult it is.

What was our ROI?

We have seen ROI from this product and we are able to determine this because of our internal accounting. When a project starts, we always calculate what our benefits are with respect to the technology. Taking into account the number of web services and APIs that we have, we're pretty sure that considering the cost of governance, this solution is better than if we were not using one.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

This is not a cheap solution but, compared to other products such as those offered by IBM, the pricing is similar.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We did evaluate other options including IBM API Connect and Apigee. Feature-wise, these products are comparable.

Given that we were already using webMethods, using the API gateway had some benefits. There is value in staying with a single vendor, with the advantage that it is easier to integrate with other products in the webMethods stack.

We did not consider using any open-source alternatives.

What other advice do I have?

This solution provides a fully customizable portal that has built-in testing capabilities, although we haven't implemented it yet. This is something that we are planning to do within the next couple of months.

My advice for anybody who is implementing this product is to involve consultants who are familiar with it because they can help you to best set it up. Also, think about the process and steps in your governance because this is a workflow and you want to be sure that it follows the procedures that you have in place.

Overall, I'm happy with the product.

I would rate this solution an eight out of ten.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises
Disclosure: PeerSpot contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
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SVP - API integration, Fintech, Solution Architect, Delivery and Digital Lending at a financial services firm with 10,001+ employees
Real User
Top 20
Good runtime fabric and API management, but doesn't scale well
Pros and Cons
  • "The stability overall has been pretty great."
  • "We find that the enterprise level is lacking scalability."

What is our primary use case?

We primarily use the solution for API management.

What is most valuable?

Their gateway is great. They have a pay manager gateway which I find very interesting. 

We like their API manager.

Their RTF, runtime fabric, is very useful.

The stability overall has been pretty great.

We didn't have any issues with the initial setup.

Technical support has been very helpful.

Their ability to observe is good.

What needs improvement?

Some items are not ideal. For example, they should for sales management, they need better performance in the core processing.

The IO blocking isn't ideal.

We find that the enterprise level is lacking scalability.

We have some hundred Linux boxes and 400 or so APIs and for scaling, we are facing challenges. However, we haven't yet compared it to other ESBs, and therefore it's possible that all ESBs are limited in the same way.

They're in the process of evolving right now. There are many changes on the horizon that may prove to be interesting. For example, we've implemented CI/CD and now it's my understanding that the graph scale's also coming. 

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using the solution for four years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The stability of the solution is pretty good. There are no bugs or glitches and it doesn't crash or freeze. It's reliable. 

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The scalability is lacking. We're not sure if it's just this solution or ESBs in general, however, we've had trouble scaling as we need to.

We have about 100 users on the solution currently. They are mostly tech leads, senior developers, and architects.

How are customer service and support?

Technical support has been great. If you raise a ticket, then they respond on the basis of the severity of the issue, the criticality of the issue. They attend to the call really quickly. We've been happy with the level of support on offer.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is very straightforward. We didn't have any issues at all. It's simple and easy to implement and not overly complex.

We have 30 to 50 people that comprise a support team that can help handle any maintenance issues. 

What about the implementation team?

We did have assistance from MuleSoft support.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

I don't have any visibility on the licensing and therefore cannot speak to the exact cost of the product.

We are working with a platinum tier and have an unlimited core. It's my understanding is that there are no additional costs beyond the licensing fee itself. 

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We've gone live with MuleSoft and I have been comparing it with TIBCO or Dell and IBM products. If it's threat management that can be done concurrently across platforms, maybe it can be performed better. However, I've heard TIBCO is not evolving at this time.

I was exploring other options for my own knowledge and understanding as I am looking for a job change. People not only use Mulesoft, and companies want to have knowledge in two to three platforms. I'm just comparing Mulesoft with IBM ESB, Oracle, and a few other products. 

What other advice do I have?

We're just a customer and an end-user.

Previously, a Mulesoft community edition was available. We started using Mulesoft's community version. We were exploring some ESB in our organization four years back. We started using MuleSoft as we've got Salesforce. At that time, Mulesoft was not yet acquired by Salesforce and that's why we went with the community edition. It was good. It was free. Then, slowly, we purchased some courses and Mulesoft was more connected to Salesforce. Now also Salesforce is there and AWS is there and it's more well-known and integrated. We thought it would help us due to its growth.

I'd rate the solution at a seven out of ten. It's a product that's still evolving. 

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Hybrid Cloud
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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Senior Software Engineer at a retailer with 10,001+ employees
Real User
Top 20
Overall quite good with great stability and scalability
Pros and Cons
  • "The stability of the solution is good. There aren't issues surrounding bugs or glitches. We don't find that it crashes or freezes. It's pretty reliable."
  • "The solution tends to hide the limitations to keep selling the product."

What is our primary use case?

We primarily use the solution for all of our security. There are a few use cases for us where we use it to protect API to third parties.

What is most valuable?

The solution, overall, is quite good.

What needs improvement?

The product has a few restrictions I'd prefer weren't there.

We have trouble finding use cases. For example, when we google "data locator" we can't find a use case scenario at all. We can't find more than, approximately, five use cases, however, we need more.

We needed to do more than 20 configurations, and we weren't able to do that as the limit is 20 on the solution.

The solution tends to hide the limitations to keep selling the product. I can't blame them for doing it, however, it makes it difficult for those of us who eventually sign on.

The solution is expensive.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been dealing with the solution for close to three years at this point.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The stability of the solution is good. There aren't issues surrounding bugs or glitches. We don't find that it crashes or freezes. It's pretty reliable.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The scalability of the solution is okay. If a company needs to scale it, it should be able to do so.

Currently, we only have about ten people on our team that use it.

How are customer service and technical support?

We haven't found the technical support to be that good, to be honest. We're not completely satisfied with the level of service.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We're currently using IBM Connect as well as Azure. Functionality-wise, there aren't too many differences. One is on-premises, however, therefore it's really difficult to compare both together. With IBM, you have to maintain a few more things. There are more administrative tasks.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup wasn't straightforward. It was complex due to the fact that Apigee didn't have any integrations and we had IBM APA Connect Resources.

There were many things we weren't told earlier. Once you clear certain items you can't change the name, for example. There were a few other items, like monitoring, which had a limited number of configurations which was an issue.

Deployment was fairly quick. It only took five minutes or so.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

The solution is not a cheap product. Licensing can be quite expensive.

Our contract is around $2 million for three years.

We don't have a clear picture how the billing works. We have one service package of one size and yet we don't have a clear picture of the purchase or the status or if they will charge more due to earlier limits on services. The solution needs to make licensing more clear. Even if they charged us $10,000 or even $20,000 more but they were clear about the what and the why, we'd be okay with that. We'd just like to know.

What other advice do I have?

We're just a customer. We don't have a business relationship with the company.

We are removing our IBM products and transition completely over to Apigee.

We have Azure's API as well. In next one year or two year, we are going to dissolve IBM API Connect as well as Azure CIM and move everything to Apigee.

Overall, on a scale from one to ten, I'd rate Apigee at an eight. We'd rate it higher, however, they aren't clear on their offering. We just want everything automated and easy. The cost is not the issue. The lack of information is.

I'd recommend the solution. It's a nice product and companies should go ahead with it, so long as they are okay with the pricing, as it is rather expensive. If a company is cost-consious, IBM API Connect may be better as the licensing costs are lower.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Public Cloud
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Solution Architect at a sports company with 201-500 employees
Real User
Top 5
Good API hosting and management and very stable
Pros and Cons
  • "The API management and the hosting of the API platform are great."
  • "The documentation could be improved for the customer."

What is our primary use case?

We have company-wide APIs which are hosted in Niger, and some of the external clients access the applications via the API, and we provide the post-data information. The clients get their data from our larger API.

What is most valuable?

The way the API management handles the calls and call throttling is excellent. 

The API management and the hosting of the API platform are great.

What needs improvement?

We haven't used API model that much, so I'm not in a good position to say recommendations as we are still exploring the Azure API management. We need more time to fully take in the solution before pointing our its flaws.

The documentation could be improved for the customer. The instructions on the district API and the initial stages of working with the solution need to be documented better so that users are more informed and they can have an improved experience.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using the solution for three years now.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The stability of the solution is good. We haven't had any issues. I can't recall bugs or glitches. It doesn't crash or freeze. It's reliable.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The scalability of the solution is very good. If a company needs to expand it, it should be able to do so quite easily.

Currently, we have between 500-600 users in our organization on the solution.

How are customer service and technical support?

We haven't really used technical support too often. Therefore, I can't really speak to their level of knowledge or responsiveness to issues.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We previously used IBM Open Shift. We switched due to the fact that the company was going to Azure and we didn't want multiple clients.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup isn't too difficult and doesn't take too long. You need to handle it to have the management gateway. Of course, every time it is deployed, then it needs to be configured to work with API. That could take some time.

For the deployment and maintenance, the size of the team you need depends on the project. We had a couple of developers on ours, for example.

What about the implementation team?

I assisted with the implementation. I tend to handle it myself.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

It's my understanding that the licensing is very clear. However, I'm not involved in it in any way, and therefore, I'm not sure what the cost structure is. 

What other advice do I have?

We're just a customer. 

We do plan to continue to use the product going forward.

I'm not sure if I would recommend the solution. It depends on how their organization and architecture is, and if they're doing on-prem or cloud, depending on the requirement. It's very hard to say.

That said, I would rate it overall at eight out of ten.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Public Cloud
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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