Equinix Interconnects CELSA to Improve Performance + Lower Costs

Steel manufacturer uses Equinix Fabric software-defined interconnection to connect regional hubs, clouds and users

Theo van Andel
Jose Maria Anta
Equinix Interconnects CELSA to Improve Performance + Lower Costs

While digital transformation is making an impact on every industry, the impact on the manufacturing industry is more significant than most. For manufacturing companies who embrace a digital-first business strategy, the benefits are tangible – like reduced networking infrastructure costs and delivering faster network performance. In an industry where customer demands are high, supply chains have been disrupted and real time process insights are critical, many more manufacturing businesses are making the leap to digital today. Equinix recently helped manufacturer CELSA Group™ transition to a modernized distributed digital infrastructure and they are already reaping the benefits.

One of the leading European multinationals in long steel products, CELSA operates a diverse mix of steel mills, rolling mills, transformation plants, distribution companies, service centers and recycling companies in 11 countries. CELSA turned to Equinix for help with modernizing its network backbone.

CELSA optimizes cloud connectivity and user experience

Read this case study to see how CELSA group, a multinational long steel manufacturer, uses software-defined interconnection to improve its global wide area network (WAN) performance to deliver a better user experience.

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CELSA had several business goals in mind. First, they wanted to improve the user experience for employees who needed to access SAP ERP applications and cloud-based business processes and operations. To accomplish this, CELSA knew they needed to improve its global wide area network (WAN) performance and lower end-to-end network latency. At the same time, they wanted to reduce the costs associated with the network. Through Equinix Fabric™ software-defined interconnection and a high-performance, scalable and resilient SD-WAN backbone, Equinix helped CELSA meet these goals.

The solution: an interconnected hybrid multicloud architecture + SD-WAN

CELSA replaced its MPLS network with dedicated, private “access to the internet” (DIA) links via Equinix Connect. It then interconnected its infrastructure and its regional headquarters over secure point-to-point (P2P) Level 2 lines to Equinix International Business Exchange™ (IBX®) data centers. CELSA interconnected its infrastructure in all Equinix data centers using Equinix Fabric™ at the edge in the following regional metros: Nordics, British Islands, Central UE, Eastern UE and two sites in Iberia. It then reduced its network complexity by orchestrating SD-WAN connectivity in all sites, including in Equinix data centers. CELSA’s SD-WAN network backbone was built on top of these interconnected regional hubs, connecting network service providers and cloud service providers, and enabling direct and secure access to the public internet.

Cloud connectivity was a top priority for CELSA, so they leveraged an agile interconnection model for aggregating network traffic and cloud interconnection. They needed a hybrid multicloud architecture in order to keep some industrial workloads on-premises while they continued to run others in the public cloud. On Platform Equinix they could connect regional hubs with each other and with the company’s SAP ERP environment. Platform Equinix also provided dedicated cloud “on-ramps” for direct and secure access to cloud platforms (AWS, Microsoft Azure and Google).

Equinix data center interconnection was key for our global design of the new WAN. The pay-per-use, software-defined interconnection of Equinix Fabric reduced our network costs and provided the global, low-latency virtual connections we needed to the public cloud.” - Manel Parra, CTO, CELSA Group

CELSA leveraged this new design to create four cloud availability zones across its European locations, allowing users in each of the regions to consume the cloud service provider (CSP) applications and CELSA digital infrastructure services via an internet access gateway enabled by Equinix Connect. Finally, Equinix helped CELSA establish business continuity and disaster recovery sites at Equinix IBX locations in Barcelona and the British Islands.

CELSA’s Resilient, Interconnected Digital Infrastructure and Hybrid Multicloud Architecture

Modern, interconnected digital infrastructure provides a host of benefits

This new deployment didn’t just improve performance and user experience – CELSA realized myriad benefits from its modern, interconnected digital infrastructure:

  • Interconnected infrastructure reduced latency and significantly improved cloud workload performance.
  • Consolidated network, cloud, SaaS and IT services resulted in lower overall networking costs.
  • Moving from MPLS to SDN and SD-WAN reduced network infrastructure costs by up to 40%.
  • Placing compute at the edge lowered latency by up to 10x.
  • Interconnected regional hubs made migrating workloads to the cloud easier.
  • Redundant regional hubs and cloud connectivity established geo-resiliency for business continuity and disaster recovery.

In addition, the new infrastructure is flexible and future-proof – it’s easy to add new sites using Network Edge and Equinix Metal™ , and expand to new clouds and or locations when needed.

The CELSA Group shares a common vision with Equinix in its commitment to sustainable development and the circular economy. It recycles more than 8 million tons of scrap annually. And with Norwegian hydrogen producer Nel and utility Statkraft, CELSA is building a hydrogen-based steel manufacturing plant as an alternative to fossil fuels, reducing its carbon footprint of the process.[i] As the world’s digital infrastructure company, we at Equinix have the responsibility to harness the power of technology to innovate and contribute to a more accessible, climate neutral and sustainable future.

Is your manufacturing business ready to make the leap to digital? Equinix can help. Start by reading the case study of how we helped CELSA transition to a digital infrastructure.



[i] Hydrogen plant to be built in Norway for Celsa steel plant

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Theo van Andel Field Development Senior Manager
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Jose Maria Anta Global Solutions Architect
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