Landbell AG is an environmental and waste management specialist. The Mainz-based company operates a system for collecting and recycling of sales packaging and provides long-proven industry solutions. Its list of services includes industrial waste disposal, transport packaging, a deposit system for recycling disposable beverage containers and a full-service solution for the return and disposal of electronic products. In 2003, Landbell became the first competitor of nationwide take-back systems to erode the monopoly of Dual System Germany GmbH (DSD).
As an environmental and waste management specialist, Landbell AG provides specific take-back and recycling of sales packaging to customers in the commerce and trade industries. The national and international operator of a dual system offers the right disposal solution and develops innovative, customized recycling solutions. Even with its services, the Mainz-based company allows customers and waste disposal contractors to easily manage their packaging data and reporting amounts online through a portal.
For retrieval and disposal, customers must register at Landbell with the respective amounts of packaging they bring into the market. Previously, the amount reports were made in the conventional way via letter, fax or email. Landbell manually inputted data into SAP and updated the previous system of product master data with information on products, packaging and packing materials.
Landbell looked to a modern portal solution to reduce data redundancy and automate data reporting and product master record maintenance and thereby retain customers. The waste disposal firm believed a flexible portal structure should allow for future changes in conditions at Landbell and provide more space for the company's development. In addition, Landbell hoped to reduce administration expenses.
In light of the project, Landbell charged Liferay partner UBL with the task of selecting a suitable solution. UBL is backed by over 25 years of competence in engineering consolidation and availability solutions in the domain of IBM POWER, Intel and storage systems. UBL was able to provide expertise in consolidation and available solutions as well as software development of individual business requirements. After considering various solutions, Landbell decided on the market-leading and future-oriented open source portal solution of Liferay. "For us, technology played an important role in the selection of the portal solution," said Udo Knopf, Director of Finance and IT at Landbell.
In comparison to other portals, Liferay's administration, configuration and resource consumption were extremely lightweight. Liferay also provided an established and stable basis for modular application components (portlets). Current frameworks and technologies led to high flexibility and adaptability. Also, Liferay portlets were developed like normal web applications (i.e., with all major frameworks such as Struts, JSF, Rich Faces, ICEfaces or PrimeFaces). Even scripting languages like PHP were applicable under Liferay.
Through its fine granular roles and permissioning system, Liferay offered the ability to create customized individual portal solutions. The platform also included a number of ready and immediately applicable portlets, a feature that was generally regarded as a plus point for the rapid implementation of portal projects. "We were particularly impressed by Liferay's sophistication, future safety and flexibility," Knopf said. "With regard to the necessary know-how for future developments, we are well-positioned and prepared."
Using model-driven software development (MDA), UBL created in the span of five months a modern enterprise customer portal, which all Landbell customers can use to capture their own data and build their own article master data. All data entered by the customers on the portal is transferred to the leading SAP system, in which all contract data is stored and the invoice is issued. Through an XML interface, product packaging and packing materials information can be imported. "Previously the data had to be stored in four different data systems," Knopf explained. "On the Liferay portal, redundancies could now be completely removed."