Apr 21, 2021

Ricoh: Empowering Vodafone’s digital capabilities

Vodafone
ricoh
Scott Birch
3 min
Ricoh: Empowering Vodafone’s digital capabilities
Joanna Parker, Business Development Director at Ricoh UK Ltd on delivering vital IT services directly into Vodafone UK & Group...

A global organisation historically known for its print services, Ricoh is also recognised today for IT services in its own right – empowering digital workplaces using innovative technologies and services to enterprise organisations around the world.

Joanna Parker, Business Development Director at Ricoh UK Ltd, is responsible for delivering cyber security and field services into Vodafone.

“Ricoh has worked in partnership with Vodafone since 2004,” says Parker, “supporting their mobile and, more recently, their fixed network with solutions and professional services around security infrastructure, cyber security services, and cloud infrastructure.”

When it comes to cyber security, for instance, Ricoh has a dedicated engineering team working with Vodafone’s own highly skilled security engineers, providing design, implementation and support for Vodafone’s critical security infrastructure.

“We also have a dedicated professional services team within security who support high-level design and implementation of global security infrastructure for Vodafone,” says Parker. “That team provides support across all areas of professional service in regard to cyber security, dedicated teams within product development, application development working with DevSecOps, right at the forefront of Vodafone security infrastructure, security application and infrastructure requirements.

“We support implementation, rationalisation and consolidation, as well as specific programmes to manage increased demand and generate more efficiencies across the Vodafone cellular network.”

Ricoh has over 90,000 employees, giving the company significant capability to support field services and field engineering globally. Boosting their capabilities even further, Ricoh has also recently acquired MTI Technology – specialising in data and cyber security, data centre modernisation, IT managed services and IT transformation services. MTI provide a range of professional and managed services designed to help customers accelerate and de-risk their IT transformation projects.

“MTI are able to support our dedicated on-site teams across the UK and across Europe with innovations in cyber and are uniquely positioned to support the dedicated security team that we have on-site within Vodafone,” says Parker.

That acquisition proved timely when it came to coping with the extra demands caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, and Parker says Ricoh were well prepared and fortunate to be able to work remotely while still having access to all critical infrastructure. 

“Where teams needed to be on-site or working within data centres, we have been able, by working in partnership with Vodafone, to ensure that any implementation, rationalisation or consolidation has still been undertaken by all of our teams,” says Parker. “We fully supported all projects and programmes and did not cause any delay or impact across Vodafone's project and programme rollouts that we were responsible for delivering.”

From a business development perspective, both for Ricoh and for its partnership with Vodafone, Parker believes there are even more opportunities over the next 12 to 18 months. 

“We see a great opportunity to be able to support Vodafone with regard to Ricoh’s IT services portfolio – our data centre capabilities, technologies and security innovation, but also around our digital workplace solutions, data and analytics, and our infrastructure and cloud solutions,” she says.

“This enables us to not just support Vodafone but also Vodafone's customers who are looking at cloud-based and secure managed security infrastructures.”

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Jun 16, 2021

Grupo Espinosa: 70 years of constant evolution

Macmillan Education
Grupo Espinosa
3 min
A proudly Mexican company servicing the publishing industry with best-in-class printing, storage and distribution facilities in the heart of Latin America

Founded in 1952, Grupo Espinosa has been relentlessly supporting the publishing industry with producing more than 100 million copies every year – whether its books, magazines, catalogues or single-order custom prints. No project is big or small for Grupo Espinosa, as the facility can scale up on demand and their turnaround times are highly competitive. Grupo Espinosa works with on-demand digital press or offset press, in paperback with glued softcover binding, PUR softcover binding, stitched paperback binding, binder’s board, hardcover, saddle stitched, Spiral or Wire-O. Equipped with the experience needed for a product to leave the plant ready for distribution, Grupo Espinosa delivers anywhere inside or outside Mexico. Traditionally starting off as a black and white printing press, Grupo Espinosa has experienced transformation first hand – from colour to digital offset printing. Currently, Grupo Espinosa is also looking at making capital investments into audio books to match with the increasing demand. 

So how did a seemingly local operation in Latin America become a world-renowned printing facility trusted by hundreds of clients? As Rogelio Tirado, CFO of Grupo Espinosa for the last six years says “It all comes down to our market experience and our dedication to quality”. With nearly 70 years behind them, and located in Mexico City, Grupo Espinosa has two major locations – one spanning 75,000 square metres and the other about 45,000 square metres. Both locations are controlled by a single ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) system ensuring speed, consistency and quality of work. Tirado says this isn’t their only competitive advantage. He adds “Our competitive advantage is the relationship we have with customers and the trust they put in us with their intellectual property”. Speaking of trust, global publishing giant Macmillan Education exclusively partners with Grupo Espinosa for their Latin America operations, as part of Macmillan’s decentralized hub strategy. Having a facility that offered the full spectrum of service – from storing digital content to printing and distributing – was one of the major requirements for Macmillan, and Grupo Espinosa was recognized as the leading printing hub for providing this 360 infrastructure. Another factor that has led to success for Grupo Espinosa is the absolute focus on quality and time. The staff are committed to providing the best quality in the best possible time, without causing wastage of resources. Sustainability is a huge factor playing into Grupo Espinosa’s operations, and they’ve created a healthy environment with the sustainable use of paper and energy resources as well as keeping their employees – most of them associated with the organisation for over 10 years – happy. He adds, “In order to be truly successful, you need to be good to the environment, employees, suppliers, and your customers. But most importantly, you need to be sustainable, you need to have proper working conditions, pay proper salaries, proper prices for paper, source the paper from sustainable sources, pay your taxes,  basically be a good global corporate citizen and that's probably one of the biggest achievements that we have.”

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