Cola distributor removes WAN bottlenecks with FatPipe line aggregation

Tuesday, 10 April, 2012

Admiral Beverage Corporation, a producer and distributor of Pepsi-Cola products, has increased its WAN speed and reliability by aggregating bandwidth from private and public lines of different kinds.

The company has nine subsidiary companies, three production facilities and a trucking company. It employs more than 1200 people at 30 facilities.

The company previously utilised a frame network to handle most of its WAN needs. The frame network became overburdened by the needs of this growing company and, as a result, processing and functionality was slow and inadequate, affecting productivity levels and frustrating staff.

Admiral Beverage uses web-enabled handheld devices to track various business transactions. Company drivers use the mobile computerised handheld devices to update inventory, print invoices on site, complete pre-sales transaction throughout the day and download information at the end of the day.

There are 460 handhelds in the field. Other mission-critical applications include payroll, drivers’ route accounting, inventory and VPN.

An increase in use of the handheld devices resulted in WAN bottlenecking.

“The volume of traffic generated by the handhelds was too much for the frame to handle,” said Jim Hill, Director of Information Technology at Admiral Beverage.

After researching different possible solutions, Admiral Beverage chose FatPipe Networks to increase data transmission speeds by aggregating private and public lines of different kinds into FatPipe devices at 15 of its locations.

Along with the needed increase in bandwidth, the company used FatPipe to create a business continuity plan consisting of intelligent and automatic WAN failover.

“At least once a year, a farmer would dig up a cable line that affected our regional location. We had to manually change route tables as a failover solution. FatPipe provided an automatic, automated and immediate solution to our problem,” said Hill.

Hill also set up Unit Failover at the headquarters for availability and reliability.

The company was able to continue to utilise its frame network and added a variety of twisted pair, DSL, satellite, cable and dish connections at the separate sites.

“Our long-term goal is to eventually eliminate the frame to reduce cost by only using FatPipe as an internet link load balancer and failover solution.”

According to Hill, configuration of the new solution was “easy”.

“We know that the internet world is very unstable, so I would not trust our mission-critical apps to run only on one line at each office. It’s great that we can aggregate any kind of private or public lines through a FatPipe for reliability and added speed, which increases our productivity,” Hill said.

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