ALTANA develops, produces and sells products in the specialty chemicals business. It offers innovative, environmentally compatible solutions with the matching specialty products for paint and plastic processors, manufacturers of coatings, the printing and cosmetic industries, and the electrical and electronic industry. The group of companies with currently 47 operational companies and more than 60 application and research laboratories worldwide has its headquarters in the German town of Wesel. Products made by companies
in the ALTANA Group are sold in over 100 countries, and foreign business constitutes a majority of its total turnover.
It started when a contract had to be prolonged, but it became clear that ALTANA IT was steadily going into the direction of multi-cloud services. The network until then – based on MPLS – was proving to be far too static. Going to multi-cloud services meant that ALTANA had to reinforce security. So the company searched on the market for alternatives and for providers that combine security with networks, and made an invitation to tender. As a result, ALTANA chose Open Systems.
For ALTANA it is important to work with a provider that considers security as a core aspect – a provider who is forward thinking, who watches the developments on the market and yet doesn’t lose sight of security. Security needed to be at the core of everything. It was not just about the network, but more about how to monitor network traffic, how to manage security and in which areas ALTANA could further strengthen its security posture through diverse services.
"When we have a problem, we can talk about it openly. We work together as equals to develop the best solution together."
Bethina Fehlisch, Head of IT Shared Services
Secure SD-WAN for multi-cloud strategy
ALTANA has production sites, laboratories and sales points at over 60 locations worldwide, as well as smaller warehouses for storing and managing stock, which are all interconnected with Secure SD-WAN by Open Systems.
Firstly, it is characteristic for ALTANA to grow through mergers and acquisitions, which means ALTANA IT needs to be prepared to integrate companies into the network relatively quickly – something that works well with SD-WAN and is secure. Secondly, as ALTANA continues to move forward with its multi-cloud strategy, the SD-WAN makes it possible to connect new cloud systems flexibly and securely.
Bethina Fehlisch is pleased at how smoothly the switchover went, “The exciting thing is that during the migration, we had a situation when a provider could not deliver a line on time. Well, we just deployed a 4G link. I couldn’t believe it at first, but even things like that work. We now have different options to connect a location flexibly, even if it’s temporary at first, like when the internet provider can’t deliver a connection fast enough.”
After looking back at a successful project, Bethina Fehlisch says, “We simply found a partner in Open Systems that understands what to do and is highly professional... In operations or development there are always difficulties that come up and need to be dealt with... There, my feeling was confirmed that when we have a problem, we can talk about it openly. We work together as equals to develop the best solution together.”