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Cartamundi creates strong basis for new data center infrastructure with LAN solution from Ferranti Computer Systems

“We now have a strong foundation for the future”
- Jornt Weyts, network & security engineer at Cartamundi

Introduction

Cartamundi started out in 1970 as a joint venture of three playing cards suppliers. It now has over two hundred years of experience in the production and sale of playing cards and cards for games. The headquarters of Cartamundi is located in Turnhout. The company also has factories in Belgium, Germany, the United Kingdom, Poland, the United States, Brazil, Mexico and India, and sales offices in the Netherlands, France, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Hungary, Chile and Singapore.

Cartamundi is the world leader in its industry. In order to remain leading in the future, the company is investing in innovation. A new LAN – that was delivered early 2015 by Ferranti Computer Systems – forms the basis for an entirely new data center environment.


Photo: Cartamundi

Cartamundi has over 200 years of experience in the production and sale of playing cards and cards for games. The group generates sales over 147 million and has a workforce of 1,200. The company has its own retail collection with licensed cards (such as Disney®, James Bond®, Harry Potter®, Fifa®, etc.), but is also known for its promotional card collections (e.g. Pixar Delhaize and WWF Delhaize), casino cards, collector cards (e.g. Yu-Gi-Oh! ®) and cards for games (such as Uno®, Monopoly®). Thanks to its long-term experience and specialist knowledge the company is able to continuously develop innovative playing cards and card games to further expand the Cartamundi range.

In 2014, the company decided to renew its LAN. “The main reason for renewing our LAN was the need for a reliable and flexible data center infrastructure,” says Jornt Weyts, network & security engineer at Cartamundi. “We are planning to implement SAP as our new ERP environment. That is why we are working on optimizing our network operations. To support this, we needed a new core switching platform to replace the existing platform that has been in use for ten years. While this platform still provided sufficient performance, we opted for a new backbone to be better equipped for the future and provide the right support for the new ERP environment.”

Future

Cartamundi invited two network integrators to make a proposal, including Ferranti Computer Systems. Weyts: “We have been working with Ferranti for many years now, so it was natural to invite them to make a proposal. However, we also wanted to create a broader view by inviting a second party.” Cartamundi asked both integrators to make a proposal for a new backbone based on its vision for the future. “Our starting point in this respect was not the technology but our every day practice. We described our future needs in terms of infrastructure. The implementation of SAP is a big change for Cartamundi. It was up to the integrators to come up with the right answers.”

Cisco

Ferranti proposed to install two Cisco Nexus 5672UP switches that serve as a core, distribution and server switch. For end-users, Ferranti proposed to deploy the Cisco Catalyst 2960X series. The other provider suggested an environment based on Juniper technology. After comparing the two proposals, Cartamundi selected Ferranti’s proposed solutions. There were several reasons for this, says Weyts. “First, the price / quality ratio of the Cisco equipment was very attractive. Additionally, over time, Cisco offered us more flexibility. Next to that, we have great confidence in the combination Cisco and Ferranti. We have been collaborating very successfully with both companies for years now. The number of issues has been extremely low and if there is an issue, it is always resolved very quickly thanks to the expertise of Ferranti.”

Implementation

According to Weyts, implementing the new switches was a smooth process. “This is mainly due to a very careful preparation by Ferranti. Obviously, we wanted to keep the necessary downtime as limited as possible. In the end, the actual implementation was completed in a few days with minimal impact to users.” Weyts emphasizes that Cartamundi has now made the first important step towards a new environment. “With this project, we have laid the foundation for the future. We can now start with the SAP project that is expected to support all our European offices by the end of 2015. In addition, we can start looking at other technological solutions such as SharePoint and Lync. Looking back on this project, it is clear it was very successful. It illustrated that Cartamundi and Ferranti are well matched in terms of size and corporate culture. We understand each other very well and if there is a problem, we profit from short communication lines at Ferranti. All in all, our collaboration has been excellent.”

 

At a glance

CUSTOMER

  • Cartamundi
  • 1,200 staff worldwide
  • Developing and manufacturing playing cards and cards for games

KEY CHALLENGES

  • Create a new network with the right performance to support new developments, including a SAP implementation

BENEFITS            

  • Strong foundation for implementing new ERP environment
  • Reliable, flexible and cost-effective Cisco technology