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Food & Drink
The Big Prawn Co. was founded in 1995, with the ethos of delivering excellence in seafood. They source a diverse range of seafood products, from the finest ingredients such as prawn, crayfish and lobster, to innovations including unique cocktail combinations, marinades, snacks and even seafood ice cream.
Big Prawn’s seafood is supplied to a range of supermarkets and reputable food outlets, including Morrison’s, Waitrose, Budgens and Pret and is available online at Ocado.
It is their objective to offer customers a competitive price, without compromising on quality or taste. Seafood is sourced from farms and fisheries which are well-managed to ensure the long term sustainable future of the fishery, its environment and, crucially, its community.
The company is the largest seafood briner in the UK, one of the largest procurers of crayfish tails in Europe, as well as one of the fastest growing businesses in its sector.
The Big Prawn Co. is a business expanding in size as it continues to gain new clients within the retail and catering sectors. It required an IT infrastructure that could support and correspond with the increasing amount of data and communications being processed through the business.
In July 2015, Breakwater became the company’s IT supplier, prompting a detailed evaluation of the current solutions and software Big Prawn Co. had been operating on. Breakwater’s account managers worked together with the team at Big Prawn Co. to consider the possible limitations of their current system and to look at ways of augmenting their infrastructure to deliver the efficiencies and reliability the growing company now required.
Of primary concern to Breakwater, were the capabilities of existing network components, speed and capacity of their internet connection and the large amounts of data and business critical information that necessitated the security features of a powerful business continuity solution.
Following an investigation of Big Prawn Co.’s current IT system, one of the prevalent and, perhaps business critical, issues that needed to be addressed was the absence of a comprehensive data recovery solution.
Big Prawn Co. required a solution that would minimise any productivity or data loses as a result of system downtime. Breakwater’s team of engineers recommended the business continuity solution from Datto. The objective of Datto’s products is to ensure data is recoverable instantly, enabling the business to function during any downtime, as opposed to just retrieving the data once the system is up and running again.
Breakwater carried out an inventory of Big Prawn Co.’s existing network to determine any necessary upgrades to bring performance in-line with the growing data volumes within the business. The team recommended upgrading the infrastructure to 1GB networking; this involved the replacement of certain components, including network switches and old fibre transceivers. The new switches induced a quicker message relay to the server, triggering a positive impact on productivity.
As a further means of creating efficiencies within the business, Breakwater advised that Big Prawn Co. should change their broadband to Fibre to the Cabinet (FTTC). This internet technology runs a fibre optic line from the nearest telephone exchange to the most local cabinet. The connectivity from the cabinet to Big Prawn Co. is then achieved using a copper cable, which utilises VDSL2 technology (comparable to ADSL broadband, but it’s faster over copper lines). This new internet technology also provided Big Prawn Co. with the reliability that, if the power goes down, their connection will not be lost as the network draws from its own isolated electricity supply.
During the short time Breakwater has been delivering IT support and services to Big Prawn Co. they have afforded a range of solutions that enable the business to work more effectively.
Big Prawn Co.’s infrastructure is now equipped with new components, allowing it to expand at the same pace as the business and handle increased network traffic. The installation of FTTC broadband supplies personnel with a quick and dependable internet solution, once again promoting productivity; and finally Datto’s business continuity solution means Big Prawn Co. are instilled with the confidence that their data is protected and the knowledge that they will not lose revenue as a result of unexpected downtime.
Vince Gotts, Company Secretary of Big Prawn Co. commented:
“After many years of dealing with an alternative IT support partner it felt like quite a big step to move support companies. Breakwater IT analysed our needs, advised and immediately managed the improvements to some of our existing IT infrastructure. We have found their costs to be very competitive meaning we can invest savings into further improvements.
This leads to both a more efficient environment but, importantly, the peace of mind that should we need to use our disaster recovery plans, any data loss and downtime would be minimal. The Breakwater IT staff are always professional yet personable – this further strengthens the relationship between our companies.”
The relationship between Breakwater and Big Prawn Co. will continue to evolve as the technical team assist them with making changes to encourage efficiencies and cost-savings within their business. The most recent step in the development plan has been to migrate Big Prawn Co.’s email to Office 365, once again fostering a dynamic and productive approach to working. Office 365 co-ordinates emails, calendars and contacts, regardless of the device, and provides industry-leading anti-malware protection and spam filtering.
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