Merck KGaA has given Orange Business Services responsibility for redesigning its global computer network. The agreement tasks Orange with making Merck KGaA’s network infrastructure less complex, while also taking steps to facilitate collaboration between staffers working across 200 locations.
Orange has released details of some of the technologies and approaches it is deploying to achieve these goals. The plan is to use Riverbed’s SteelHead CX to optimize traffic on Merck KGaA’s network. This is expected to improve the performance of on-premise and cloud applications that Merck KGaA employees access via virtual private networks (VPNs) and the public internet.
“Continuous real-time connectivity for all communication channels is crucial to improve our employee productivity,” Merck KGaA CIO James Stewart said in a statement.
Optimization of connectivity has become increasingly important as the number of sites in Merck KGaA’s network and the number of devices used by people at those locations have both grown. Before Merck KGaA acquired Serono in 2006, the company possessed approximately 115 sites. The Serono deal added 35 sites to Merck KGaA’s network. A further 30 sites were integrated following the takeover of Millipore in 2010. These deals and other actions have swelled Merck KGaA’s network to 200 locations.
Having worked with Merck KGaA for years, Orange has handled the integration of the acquired sites and will now manage efforts to optimize the ever-growing network.
Merck KGaA has signed a string of deals with Orange over the past decade. In 2008, Merck KGaA signed a five-year deal to extend its existing relationship with the telecommunications firm. At that time, the focus was on Orange’s recent integration of 35 Serono sites into Merck KGaA’s network.
By the time the contract was renewed in 2012, attention had shifted to Orange’s work to establish an internet protocol (IP) VPN to connect 180 Merck KGaA locations in 60 countries. In between the two contracts, Orange continued to integrate sites Merck KGaA had acquired, such as those involved in the 2010 Millipore deal.
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