Customer Story

Raiffeisen Bank International: Innovation Through Far-Reaching Cloud Migration

  • Challenge

    Strengthen competitiveness by adopting a more agile, scalable, and value focused technology strategy.
  • Solution

    Build a structured process to transition from on-premises systems to the AWS public cloud at speed and scale.
  • Outcome

    Successfully migrated more than 160 application workloads to the cloud, which will enable multi-million-euro cost savings by 2026.


Over 30 years, Raiffeisen Bank International (RBI) built a market-leading position in Austria and Central and Eastern Europe (CEE). But as it looked to the future, the bank faced a problem: data growth meant that maintaining and expanding its data centers was becoming hugely costly. Relying purely on-premises infrastructure was no longer sustainable, limiting agility, resilience, and scalability, and potentially weakening the bank’s competitiveness.

In 2020, RBI therefore introduced a new group IT strategy to transition to public cloud. The ambitious targets included migrating 50 percent of the bank’s technology assets to the public cloud within two years (by the end of 2023), and 80 percent by the end of four years (by the end of 2025).

Marek Chlebicki, Director, Head of Group IT Strategy & Transformation, RBI, explains: “We had two distinct but interrelated goals for our public cloud migration. From the IT perspective, we aimed to modernize our technology to enable more agile service delivery and ongoing innovation. And on the business front, we believed that this would help us to innovate and respond quicker to the needs of our clients in order to become the bank most recommended by clients in the CEE region.”

Hitting the project targets would mean overcoming significant challenges. RBI would have to migrate at high speed and scale to maximize agility and cost benefits. Furthermore, the bank would need to ensure that its cloud capabilities aligned with the rigorous standards of the wider financial services sector. For example, enhanced security was of the utmost importance to ensure unwavering protection for customer data.

Michal Kurowski, Director, Head of Group IT Transformation Program, RBI adds: “Adopting cloud-native technologies was also essential to remain competitive. We wanted to go beyond simple rehosting to replatform and refactor most of our workloads to harness the cloud’s innovation capabilities. This would help us drive efficiencies and shorten time to market when we roll out new products for customers.”


To complete the migration fast and minimize project complexity, RBI engaged Hitachi Digital Services. Through this collaboration, RBI aimed to capitalize on the proven capabilities, expertise, global footprint, and scalable team of Hitachi Digital Services to usher in transformation and add a sustainable edge to its operations.

Marek Chlebicki adds: “It was crucial for us to establish not merely an outsourcing relationship, but a genuine partnership. Our aim was to tackle challenges and navigate the path ahead collaboratively. This represented a departure from traditional models; we envisioned a symbiotic relationship, focusing on mutual goals, growth and understanding. We firmly believed this progressive approach was the optimal way forward.”

RBI worked with Hitachi Digital Services to execute a strategy encompassing four elements. In the initial Assessment phase, Hitachi Digital Services performed a deep-dive analysis of the ‘as-is’ state for all technical and functional components of applications used by RBI’s network of subsidiary banks. This enabled the formation of the target cloud architecture for each application, aligned with broad business objectives.

Then, in the Mobilization stage, Hitachi Digital Services crafted plans for the target operating model, configuration of Amazon Web Services (AWS) Virtual Private Clouds, landing zones, and security group structures.

For the Migration and Modernization process, RBI set up a dedicated Migration Factory function. Utilizing the AWS Migration Acceleration Program, this approach streamlined the transition, and enabled on-the-fly modernization work, such as replatforming and refactoring to optimize applications for the cloud from the start.

Furthermore, RBI inaugurated monthly AWS Immersion Days with the Hitachi Digital Services team, focused on topics that help to accelerate and standardize migration patterns and reinforce execution quality.

The new cloud environment harnesses a broad range of AWS services. For example, RBI modernized application workloads using container platforms such as EKS and ECS with Fargate, moved key databases to RDS for Oracle and RDS for PostgreSQL, and migrated storage to EFS and FSx. The bank also uses OpenSearch for data indexing, CloudWatch for application monitoring, and Security Hub, KMS, and WAF to protect the environment.

In the fourth element of the strategy, Hitachi Digital Services helped to launch a dedicated training initiative, involving workshops, learning sessions, and hands-on experiences for RBI employees. This process equips users with the skills required to operate effectively within the new AWS cloud ecosystem.

“It was crucial for us to establish not merely an outsourcing relationship, but a genuine partnership. Our aim was to tackle challenges and navigate the path ahead collaboratively. This represented a departure from traditional models; we envisioned a symbiotic relationship, focusing on mutual goals, growth and understanding.”

- Marek Chlebicki, Director, Head of Group IT Strategy & Transformation , RBI


Working with Hitachi Digital Services, RBI is well on course to achieving its cloud transformation objectives—unlocking valuable business agility, data security, and scalability benefits. Over the course of the first two years of the project, the bank has successfully migrated more than 80 applications and databases, reaching its initial goal of close to 50 percent of all technology assets running in the cloud by the end of 2023.

The complete Group reached the aspiration defined by OKRs, while three of RBI’s network banks in Albania, Kosovo, and Ukraine have gone even further, migrating more than 50 percent of their on-premises systems to the cloud. In fact, one subsidiary in Ukraine has transitioned all systems to the cloud—a sign that the AWS ecosystem provides the resiliency required to run demanding banking workloads.

Furthermore, the strong focus on modernization has enabled RBI to adopt many more advanced cloud-native technologies. In total, Hitachi Digital Services has helped the bank to replatform and refactor more than 20 percent of all application workloads during the migration, improving flexibility and performance.

The AWS Immersion Days and training sessions run by RBI Go IT Academy and Hitachi Digital Services have also successfully upskilled the RBI workforce, with more than 200 employees now trained and certified in the AWS cloud. “Our solution was a blend of technology transformation and people development. We are firm believers that the success of a technological change rests on people and skills even more than on technology itself,” concludes Marek Chlebicki.

Finally, RBI expects the partnership with Hitachi Digital Services to unlock significant cost savings, as Michal Kurowski concludes: “By the end of 2026, we expect to reduce our total cost of ownership on infrastructure at each network bank, as well as generating savings through no longer managing and powering on-premises systems.”


Raiffeisen Bank International

A leading corporate and investment bank, Raiffeisen Bank International AG (RBI) regards Austria and Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) as its home markets. 12 markets of the region are covered by subsidiary network banks including Czechia, Slovakia, Romania, Hungary, Croatia, Serbia, Albania, Kosovo, Bosnia, and Ukraine. The bank services around 16.8 million retail and private banking customers through 2,000 outlets.


Partner: Amazon Web Services

Amazon Web Services (AWS) is one of the world’s most comprehensive and broadly adopted cloud services, offering over 200 fully featured services from data centers globally. Millions of customers – including the fastest-growing startups, largest enterprises and leading government agencies – are using AWS to lower costs, become more agile and innovate faster. AWS has the most extensive global cloud infrastructure. The AWS Region and Availability Zone model has been recognized by Gartner as the recommended approach for running enterprise applications that require high availability.

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