O2 signs three year infrastructure deal with National Rail


New three year, multi million pound agreement will see O2 refresh National Rail’s entire Cisco estate

O2 has won a three year contract to refresh Network Rail’s (NR) entire Cisco switch and router estate, which covers 450 sites, including four data centres across the UK through its O2 Unify business.

O2 already provides NR with a range of services including mobile, fixed line, project management and consultancy as part of a relationship dating back to 2008 when the rail operator moved to O2 from Vodafone.

O2 says the new deal which is worth “several million pounds” and will also see O2 Unify provide new Cisco wide area network (WAN) and local area network (LAN) infrastructure for NR’s new Milton Keynes based “Quadrant” National Centre which will house 3,500 when it opens in the summer.

The contract will initially see O2 Unify provide support and maintenance services for NR’s current Cisco switch and router estate before refreshing the entire Cisco estate as current equipment nears the end of its life cycle.

New LAN and WAN infrastructure will be “key” in enabling NR to converge all of its services and improve efficiencies as it looks to reduce operating costs by 21 per cent by 2017, O2 says.

O2 Unify managing director Paul Osborne 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.

O2 general manager for enterprise David Plumb (pictured) added: “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.”