News Feature | August 20, 2014

Nike To Virtualize IT Systems

Source: Innovative Retail Technologies
Christine Kern

By Christine Kern, contributing writer

Nike IT System Overhaul

Nike has announced a multi-year partnership with Juniper to re-develop Nike’s datacenter infrastructure as the sports fashion retailer looks virtualize more of its IT services.

As part of the deal Juniper will help Nike re-architect its network architecture in the company’s datacenters globally; according to Nike, this will serve as the foundation for virtualizing its IT systems moving forward.

Nike said it plans to deploy Juniper’s MetaFabric solutions, a portfolio of  switching, routing, orchestration, software defined networking and security tools the vendor claims help accelerate the deployment and delivery of apps within and across multiple datacenters, and eases network management.

According to Nike chief information officer Anthony Watson, the partnership is designed to assist the retailer in implementing a cloud-centric architecture that is more responsive to the changing demands of the business.

“Nike is focused on elevating and accelerating innovation in our products, services and our digital ecosystem,” Watson said. “This requires progressive and agile technology solutions that keep pace with our growth.”

Juniper will provide Nike with advanced automation, management, and data analytics tools to help the company monitor all infrastructure and application domains as part of the agreement.

Shaygan Kheradpir, chief executive officer of Juniper Networks commented on the deal: “Enterprises are re-engineering their business models in light of changing customer behavior and emerging technologies. Managing this transformation requires an intelligent and comprehensive, high-IQ network infrastructure that seamlessly adapts to business demands. It also requires building private clouds that deliver applications with high performance and agility.”

Juniper has gone after SDN and cloud in a bid to bolster itself among larger incumbents like Cisco, so this agreement is a big boost for the company. According to the firm’s recently published research, many enterprises are still put off by the high cost of implementing SDN, and the lack of skills around managing networks in a software-only environment.