Case Study

City Plumbing

Written by Jon King
Cloud Solution Architect

How City Plumbing Supercharged Its Reporting with BigQuery



City Plumbing has used SAP BusinessObjects to run all of its data reports and business intelligence for many years. The teams are fully trained in the software, have intimate knowledge of the reports and can analyse these easily and thoroughly. Although BusinessObjects has some of the most comprehensive reporting on the market, which is why it is so loved, it can take hours or even days to run some of City Plumbing’s high volume, complex reports without the right supporting data framework.


City Plumbing has a best-of-breed policy, which allows it to accelerate decisions and create a hybrid technology data stack to deliver one version of the truth with no compromise on performance. As part of this policy, the decision was made to use Google BigQuery within the preferred technology stack to store data.

Google BigQuery was not only chosen as the most cost-effective solution, but also because of its unrivalled performance and security. As the Google Professional Services partner of choice, Appsbroker worked closely with City Plumbing to build, test and implement a framework that allowed the data analysts, financial departments, marketing and supply teams to carry on using their beloved BusinessObjects reporting tool, but now powered by the high performance of Google BigQuery – with remarkable results.


The changeover was so seamless that no training or change management was needed. The teams were simply pointed to a new URL, with their accustomed tool looking exactly the same and producing the exact same reports, only now supercharged by Google Cloud Platform. The proof of concept took just two days to roll out and the final solution was delivered in just two weeks.

“Ultimately, we took our favourite teddy bear, replaced its stuffing with supercharged data and gave it back in one piece; all the brilliant features were exactly the same but with 1000 times more performance power, allowing the business to react to the market, look forward rather than backwards and make immediate changes across the board.”

“We knew it could be done – we just needed to pull the experts from each field into a room, map it out, test it and build it. Appsbroker and intelligence did exactly that.”
Christopher Dean, Head of Data, Business Intelligence & Analytics at City Plumbing Supplies Holding Limited and Member of Data IQ 100 (2020)

For more Manufacturing case studies, click here.