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INSTA Elektro GmbH develops and manufactures lights for building technology, as well as LED light fixtures and controls for modern architectural lighting. Founded in 1970, it now has some 550 employees and an annual turnover of €80 million. INSTA recently installed the LED light fittings for the award-winning Saarpolygon monument in the coal fields of the Saar valley. Its 80 developers are especially active in the field of smart-home technology.


Short-term, INSTA needed a baseline analysis to prepare for a Microsoft true-up. In the medium-term, the company wanted to be able to manage all it software licenses centrally and bear down on expenditure by tracking the costs of individual Enterprise Agreements.


Prior to deploying Snow License Manager, licenses and software updates were ordered and managed through the different portals of software vendors such as Microsoft, Adobe, MobileIron and KNX-EIB, a lighting control system. It wasn’t possible to get a 360° overview of all licenses. Data about license procurement was handled within SAP. Overall, INSTA lacked a sound SAM structure – technology and process – to deal effectively with license keys, usage, software lifecycles, reports, replacement purchases, cost allocation and much more.


Because of its intuitive back-end and its user-friendly front-end, Snow Licence Manager fills many roles. It can do contract management for the software estate. It can track licenses for INSTA’s production facilities. In addition, it manages procurement and contracts for applications that do not require a license, as well as contracts for patented technology. The data from Snow is a great sources of information for cost-related allocation (or re-allocation) of licenses to users and PCs.

The SAM team at INSTA likes the powerful, up-to-date license database and easy manual CSV data import that Snow provides. The team is also impressed with Snow’s report generation, cost planning, lifetime cycle monitoring, license overview, and easy adaptability to new requirements.


“With Snow, we have found a solution that enables us to have transparency of the costs of various software vendors and licensing models.”

Rainer Oeinck, Snow Hero, INSTA



  • Full insight into all software and related Enterprise Agreements. Recognition of all server software installations, all PC installations and all user authorizations for applications and licenses.
  • Accurate cost allocation of license contracts, and the ability to trace and bill software costs to the actual user and even to the PCs used.
  • Seamless link between software contracts, maintenance contracts and service contracts when using new software solutions.
  • Comprehensive costing of projects over the complete lifecycle of the applications.
  • Actionable intelligence about hardware and software installations. Analysis of actual usage data of purchased and installed applications.

Another upside is that many users can work in the Snow environment at the same time. Snow has given INSTA rapid discovery of data files and information about contracts, licenses, users, applications and installations. It provides a good connection of software assets to a specific user or PC.


Within just three months, the true-up for Microsoft was created and validated. This paved the way for contract renegotiations and the identification of inactive licenses. Usage analysis allowed INSTA to reallocate licenses. Snow detected swathes of costly software that was not being used, and INSTA immediately saved money on maintenance.

“With Snow, we have found a solution that enables us to have transparency of the costs of various software vendors and licensing models.”
Rainer Oeinck, Snow Hero, INSTA