O2 today announced that it has won a contract to work with Network Rail to refresh the whole of the company’s current Cisco switch and router estate across 450 sites, including four data centres in the UK. The three year contract with O2 Unify is worth several million pounds. In addition, O2 Unify has been awarded a substantial project to provide the Cisco LAN and WAN infrastructure for Network Rail’s new National Centre, The Quadrant, in Milton Keynes, which will accommodate 3,500 staff from this summer.

Initially O2 Unify will provide support and maintenance services for Network Rail’s current Cisco switch and router estate. Subsequently, O2 Unify will embark on a programme to refresh the Cisco estate, as much of the equipment is moving into its end-of-life cycle and critically will not support the future requirements of the business. The LAN and WAN infrastructure will be a key component that supports the company’s business objective of delivering mission critical network resiliency and availability. The refresh will enable Network Rail to achieve future convergence of services and drive significant efficiencies.

Paul Osborne, Managing Director of O2 Unify said, ‘Our strong service culture and customer focus from our core mobile business put us in a very strong position to provide wider communications services. We demonstrated strong technical capability in the LAN WAN space as well as good commercial positioning. O2 Unify is viewed as a safe pair of hands to deliver this project and we now provide a whole range of services for Network Rail including project management, business process outsourcing and consultancy as well as products such as WAN, LAN, fixed and mobile. Truly joining their business together.’

Network Rail has a broader, company wide strategy to do ‘More for Less’, specifically reducing costs by 21per cent over a five year period. The LAN/WAN transformation will enable Network Rail to deliver its strategic transformation programmes; reduce the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) of the Network Infrastructure estate and reduce indirect TCO to the business by improving levels of availability and being able to respond better and quicker to changes in business needs.

David Plumb, O2’s General Manager for Enterprise commented: ‘Our O2 Unify capability is helping O2 to evolve our enterprise business, through our vision of Joined Up Business, to become a managed services business. We are working with Network Rail to deliver critical backbone infrastructure, which will improve the smooth running of the business and therefore the services they provide.’

This announcement is the latest example of O2 working closely with Network Rail to deliver its Joined Up Business vision, through its Joined Up Communications offering. Creating solutions to help businesses drive efficiency, productivity and innovation. By supporting senior decision makers in businesses of different sizes, across a wide range of industries and sectors, O2 has a proven track record as a trusted and helpful advisor, enabling them to adjust their operations to an ultra competitive marketplace and the ever changing needs of the workforce.

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