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Retail Technology, Retail technology News

Sainsbury’s does BT broadband deal

Friday December 16 2011

Supermarkets and depots will be broadband connected by December 2012, with convenience stores upgraded by the New Year

Supermarkets and depots will be broadband connected by December 2012, with convenience stores upgraded by the New Year


Sainsbury’s and BT have announced a major deal to improve network connections to the grocery retailer’s 1,000 stores and 23 depots, to boost productivity in store.


It will connect to BT’s next-generation broadband service to provide enhanced network capacity for its entire store and depot network nationwide.


Boosting bandwidth and access


BT said the improved connections will deliver up to four times more network capacity, allowing stores and depots will be able to share more data in real time.


Rob Fraser, Sainsbury’s IT director, stated: “This significant investment drives greater efficiency and productivity now, but is also a key enabler for our ambitious growth plans.”


More than 230 convenience stores have already been connected to the next generation broadband service within the last 11 weeks, while all other stores will be upgraded by December 2012.


BT is deploying a mix of products, including Ethernet and advanced copper broadband, to improve wide area network (WAN) services to Sainsbury’s main depots, data centres and stores.


IT and communications backbone


Sainsbury’s WAN handles sales and stock ordering details between stores, head office and supply chain centres. It will also benefit from at least four times greater capacity to stores leading to faster times for all applications, according to BT, as well as for the 22 million customer transactions a week made in its stores across the country.


The investment is also expected to support the development of voice and video services in future.


Justin King, Sainsbury’s chief executive, said: “This deal with BT is a significant step for Sainsbury’s as we continue to invest to support our growth plans. This investment will enhance the productivity of our colleagues in store and allow an even greater focus on serving customers.”


The contract was officially signed on Wednesday 14 December at Sainsbury’s Store Support Centre in Holborn.


It follows a number of other retailers signing up to Wi-Fi in their stores during the last quarter of this year, most recently including fashion retailer Ted Baker with The Cloud.