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Southern Water embarks on £15m datacentre modernisation programme

Southern Water has enlisted the help of service provider MTI Technology to revamp its datacentres, with a greater emphasis on the use of software-defined processes and hyper-converged technologies

Southern Water is embarking on a £15m datacentre modernisation programme to boost its resiliency and cyber defences, while also readying the organisation to use more cloud technologies.

The programme will be overseen by IT service provider MTI Technology, which will support the water authority as it swaps out its existing managed datacentre for a software-defined facility that the organisation can take care of the management of itself.

As such, MTI will be on hand to provide professional and managed services support during the project, which will result in the firm creating two datacentres for Southern Water in separate colocation facilities.

The sites will be kitted out with a hyperconverged compute, storage and network architecture that MTI claims will provide the organisation with a flexible IT platform that will enable the firm to manage private and public cloud infrastructure resources in the future.

Southern Water is reportedly one of England’s largest water authorities, with a coverage area spanning East Sussex, West Sussex, Hampshire, Kent, and the Isle of Wight.

Given the large number of customers who rely on the company, and the fact that utility providers are increasingly becoming targets for hackers, shoring up the cyber defences and resiliency of the organisation is another key factor in the organisation’s decision to revamp its datacentre setup.

Steve Kane, senior category manager of corporate services for Southern Water, said: “Sustained investment in technology is fundamental to increasing our efficiency, improving our capabilities and enhancing our resilience against the emerging threat of cyber attack.”

As well as hyperconverged infrastructure, the sites will also be equipped with a dual-fibre network, and will host the Southern Water’s existing Windows Server and Linux environments, as well as core business applications, such as SAP, Microsoft Exchange and its Oracle database estate.

This will be underpinned with intelligent data backup and restore, data replication, and data archiving, also courtesy of MTI.

“MTI stood out as our preferred technology partner as it was most aligned to our strategic and technical vision. Through a combination of best-of-breed technology and security expertise, we are confident we will have a future-proof and resilient IT infrastructure that will provide us with more control and flexibility. This will enable us to enhance service delivery to both our employees and customers,” added Kane.

Angelo Di Ventura, director at MTI, described the deal as a significant contract win for the firm.

“It showcases our complete portfolio of datacentre, security and managed services capabilities,” said Di Ventura. “For large organisations such as Southern Water, it is becoming imperative they have modern, secure and agile IT platforms that help them remain both competitive and safe.”

As previously reported by Computer Weekly, the firm has previously embarked on an overhaul of its data management and analytics processes, which it claims saved it £250,000 in cost savings from the first day it was deployed.

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