SD-WAN solution by Vodat International powers international expansion for Poundland

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A bespoke SD-WAN store model, designed by Vodat International, is powering the expansion of 60 new stores across Poland.

In 2018 Pepkor Europe, the owner of Europe’s largest value general merchandise retailer, wanted to launch the Dealz brand into Poland. They briefed leading retail communications provider, Vodat International, who manage the Poundland store network in the United Kingdom, to design a store model that provided the agility, security and scalability needed to capitalise on growth opportunities in a cost-effective manner.

Poundland needed this store model to feature a digital network, which could be managed from the UK, that supported operationally critical systems such as EPoS, payments and in-store Wi-Fi and could be launched within a tight timeframe.

The resulting templated store model centred around a network built on SD-WAN connectivity using local fibre and protected by two Fortinet firewalls managed by Vodat in the UK.  All operationally critical retail systems were hosted in the cloud with additional resilience for every store thanks to a back-up 4G router.

The three initial pilot stores in Swarzedz, Kalisz Kalinka and Pabianice were successful and now 60 new Dealz stores are now either live or in flight.  The retailers ongoing Polish expansion is now firmly in a ‘business as usual’ phase and the proven templated model can be deployed anywhere in Europe with an internet connection.

Dean Bourne, Head of Service Delivery & IT Infrastructure at Poundland, commented: “We needed a nimble store network solution that would enable Poundland to make the most of the compelling opportunities to expand in Poland. We also needed to manage the Dealz stores from the UK without compromising on mission-critical requirements, such as security.”

Bourne continued: “Vodat delivered on the brief, and more.  At the heart of their solution sits

SD-WAN connectivity, which has enabled the quick and cost-effective reiteration of this tried-and-tested store network model anywhere that has access to the internet.”

Paul Leybourne, head of sales at Vodat International, commented: “SD-WAN has a lot more to offer retail, enabling fast and reliable access to cloud-based software anywhere with a fibre connection. This means that critical systems can be accessed securely from anywhere at any time.”

Leybourne continued: “Cost is a sticking point at the moment for UK use, but we’re seeing a growing demand for SD-WAN among businesses looking to expand overseas, where SD-WAN costs are not so high.”