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Foodstuffs partners with Fortinet in a major network infrastructure refresh

By Ryan Morris-Reade
Fri 16 Jul 2021

Following a successful nine-month pilot program, Foodstuffs have partnered with Fortinet to replace its legacy network infrastructure and centralise its network configuration in a major refresh.

Foodstuffs North Island, a New Zealand-based co-operative that operates the PAK’nSAVE, New World, and Four Square brands, was looking to refresh its end-of-life network hardware for its 328 stores while taking a security-first approach. Foodstuffs say this approach was vital as they are an essential service, with New Zealand’s North Islanders reliant on them to provide essential food and groceries. 

Additionally, the retailer wanted a modern, reliable and secure network solution to underpin other digital initiatives.

“Foodstuffs North Island provides shared services to a co-operative of 328 stores across New Zealand’s North Island,” says Foodstuffs North Island head of IT operations and security, Campbell Mander.

“It’s important to provide a scaled network solution across different store sizes that’s robust and provides the service stores need so that they can concentrate on supplying their customers. Foodstuffs North Island wanted to establish a clear vision for its network solutions, looking at what ten years into the future would look like for the co-operative, and we wanted to partner with a vendor that would support that vision.”

The company assessed all options available in the market, testing and evaluating solutions from various vendors before partnering with Fortinet. Foodstuffs says it selected Fortinet for its high-performance, security-first approach and its reputation for its products being highly integrated and automated in security and secure software-defined wide area network (SD-WAN).

“Fortinet provides Foodstuffs North Island with a foundational solution that, at a technology layer, lets us build the digital experiences that customers demand,” says Mander.
“With more connected systems in stores, distribution centres, support centres, and main data centers, Foodstuffs North Island required all of these locations and devices to talk to each other and to be secure. Importantly, Foodstuffs North Island wanted a solution that was cost-effective for the whole of the North Island.”

Fortinet regional director of A/NZ and the Pacific Islands, Jon McGettigan, says the global pandemic has put pressure on many industries.

“In this dynamic environment, an essential service such as food supply must be reliable, resilient and secure, it was therefore strategically important for Foodstuffs North Island to deploy a sustainable, supportable network solution that would future-proof the business and enable a positive digital experience,” says McGettigan.

According to Mander, the security capability offered by Fortinet was superior when compared to its closest competitor. He says performance was essential. 

“Foodstuffs North Island had key requirements around backups, so we could transfer data from stores,” says Mander. 

“It was essential to push this data through nightly within the backup window without impacting operations. The Fortinet solution made this possible while simplifying management of the solution at the same time. Value was also a key consideration, along with capabilities and functionality.”


 

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