API Gateway Architecture of Amber Group

January 6, 2023

Case Study


  • No efficient traffic management, all from scratch
  • Developing efficiency needs to be improved
  • Complex log management requirements, high cost, and scaling challenges


  • Established systematic traffic management, supporting the Amber Group’s flagship digital asset platform
  • Greatly improved R&D efficiency
  • Enabled convenient logging management

About Amber Group

Amber Group is a team of 1000+ dynamic, entrepreneurial technologists, traders, and engineers on a mission to create frictionless marketplaces. Supporting 150+ countries, Amber Group serves 1k+ institutional clients with 1T+ traded volume and has 500m return generated investors worldwide.

On December 16, 2022, Amber Group’s official Twitter announced that Amber Group had completed a $ 300M Series - C round, led by Fenbushi Capital US and joined by other crypto-native investors and family offices.

Marching in the track of Web3, Amber Group launched its flagship digital asset platform for individuals - WhaleFin. WhaleFin empowers investors to build wealth in the digital era. Built with Amber Group’s deep expertise in institutional and consumer markets, WhaleFin is an all-in-one platform serving as the preferred digital asset gateway for customers at any experience level.

Many developers may wonder how such a vast business unit manages its great-amount traffic. So what kind of API gateway does Amber Group adopt? Let's find out.

Best API Gateway in Supporting Amber Group

Great Capability in Supporting k8s

“When selecting an API gateway, we first chose Kong and APISIX for comparison. Then, from its active community in GitHub, we got to know APISIX. We decided on APISIX majorly because APISIX is better at supporting k8s than Kong. Besides, APISIX’s monitoring and observable metrics are suitable for us. Amber Group’s Technical Expert, Sun, said.

New Leading Technologies

Obeying the technical development of cloud-native, many companies are migrating applications to microservices and containerization. Amber Group is no exception, and it preferred to choose a cutting-edge and popular API gateway. APISIX separates the data and the control planes, which is marvelous in its architecture.

Furthermore, APISIX is great for security control and comprehensive support as it supports many security plugins, such as cors, uri-blocker, ip-restriction, csrf, consumer-restriction, etc.

Inclusive in Ecosystems

APISIX enjoys a rich ecosystem, which supports L7 and L4 protocols, and many open-source or SaaS services. Amber Group uses many functions and ecosystems supported by APISIX, like hmac-auth, jwt-auth, and Prometheus.

Thanks to APISIX’s inclusiveness in supporting various features and integrating with ecosystems, all the mainstream plugins can be found in APISIX.

High Performance

As is known, Apache APISIX is the highest-performance API gateway with a single-core QPS of 23,000, with an average delay of only 0.6 milliseconds. For Amber Group, besides its robust security features, it is an extra merit of APISIX.

Developers - Friendly

Amber Group built its traffic management system from 0 to 1. Therefore, it became difficult to compare with previous situations. However, there is no doubt that APISIX's open-sourced code significantly expands Amber Group's capabilities and empowerment in business implementation. Unlike the Spring Cloud Gateway, APISIX is centralized and is strong in codec capability.

Amber Group can codec and manage traffic according to business requirements. Sun regards it as the most considerable advantage of APISIX.

Amber Group's Deployment Diagram

The main business project WhaleFin's traffic, from internal microservices, end-to-end traffic, and web, all passes through APISIX. Amber uses APISIX as the API gateway, managing north-south, and east-west traffic. APISIX is taken as a center to distribute traffic to the relevant internal microservices.

The traffic goes through the outsider layer WAF on the cloud, then the Layer 4 LB and APISIX. It seems that the performance will be lower. Hence, Amber Group adopts Akamai to improve its network, as its customers all mainly overseas.

Amber Group's Deployment Diagram

Achievements after Using APISIX

Supporting Cloud-Native Architecture

Amber Group's architecture is ultimately cloud-native with multi-cloud scenarios, with services across multiple mainstream cloud providers. As the WhaleFin business group does not need to migrate historical data and APISIX's great supporting k8s, the release was smooth and successful; nevertheless, Amber Group spent much time integrating APISIX with its internal automatic CICD pipeline.

Improving Developer's Efficiency

The most considerable merit of APISIX lies in that APISIX is developer-friendly. For example, APISIX provided a handy semi-finished product with complex overall orchestration, enabling Amber Group to customize it conveniently.

Inspiring Logging Management

“Regarding logging management, we get many references and inspiration from APISIX.” Sun said.

APISIX’s plugin datadog can be a helpful tool. Amber Group is migrating logs from the ELK Stack of AWS to Datalog. Amber Group will gradually adopt metrics, tracing, logging, etc., to realize observability.

Performing without Architectural Problems

Since its launching on December 2021, there have been no architectural problems in almost one year. Amber Group’s API gateway architecture is very stable and will keep consistent with the update of APISIX. Sun also wishes for more security services from APISIX in the future.

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