UB goes virtual

- Last updated on GMT

United Biscuits has appointed Vanco, the global virtual network
operator (VNO) to design, implement and manage its European Wide
Area Network (WAN). The three year agreement is designed to deliver
complete end-to-end connectivity along the process chain.

European snacks manufacturer United Biscuits has appointed Vanco, the global virtual network operator (VNO) to design, implement and manage its European Wide Area Network (WAN).

The three year agreement, worth over €2.9 million, will deliver complete end-to-end connectivity, providing high performance data-communications to support UB's strategic business objectives. As part of the solution, available bandwidth will be increased by 30 per cent and costs kept within the existing budget.

The Vanco solution will use MPLS, ADSL and Internet VPN, which will replace four existing corporate networks. In total the new WAN will connect 38 sites across six European countries.

Central to the solution is the introduction of bandwidth efficiency measures. One of these will see policy based routing techniques used to direct non-critical data, such as email and Internet browsing, across Internet infrastructure freeing up the main core network for business critical applications such as SAP and JD Edwards. The innovative design means that UB are able to maximise use of the back-up as well as primary infrastructure under normal operating conditions.

The choice of MPLS as the backbone technology was influenced in part by its suitability for voice, video and data convergence. Although not a key current requirement, UB have future proofed the solution if the need does arise.

"The food industry, and snacking in particular, is a dynamic market. As a result all our systems and infrastructure need to be highly flexible, geared to the management of change,"​ said Mark Vickery, IT director at UB. "Vanco's understanding of how technology can be used to support key business objectives was highly impressive. From a collection of four disparate networks we now have a single unified solution which, rather than acting as a constraint on the development of our business, is a change enabler.

David Perez, business development director for Vanco UK​ said: "Our overriding aim was to create a single unified solution for UB which would satisfy its unique and dynamic business requirements. We have put together a network which increases the available bandwidth without any additional cost. I am delighted that UB selected us and look forward to a long and successful relationship."

Vanco's financial results confirm the 15 year record of uninterrupted revenue growth, whilst continuing to make operating profits. Turnover is up 43 per cent, while contracted revenue was up 93.3 per cent to £132.0 million. Vanco continues to invest in staff recruitment and development, with a 30 per cent increase in the number of staff, in addition to the launch of v:choice, the world's first global flexible benefits scheme. Vanco provides worldwide service coverage to a number of major global organisations including Ford, Virgin Retail, Pilkington and Avis Europe. New customer service initiatives are constantly being rolled out, including O-zone, which Vanco claims is the industry's most advanced online network services portal.

United Biscuits​ is a leading European manufacturer of biscuits and snacks. The group owns a number of well known brands such as McVitie's, Hula Hoops and McVitie's Jaffa Cakes.

Related topics: Processing & Packaging

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