Diverse Systems, Facilities, and Processes Resulting from Multiple Acquisitions

Corporate Express, A Buhrmann Company, is the world’s largest business-to-business supplier of essential office and computer products and services to customers who value superior procurement solutions. Corporate Express’ North American operations have 400 facilities, including 54 distribution centers, and employs 15,000 people. In 1999, Corporate Express completed a merger with Buhrmann NV, a leading international business services and distribution company, and the parent company of BT Office Products. As a result of the transaction, Corporate Express, Inc. became a  wholly owned subsidiary of Buhrmann.  The combination of these two organizations creates the world's leading business-to-business office supply and services company, with total revenues of approximately $9 billion, 30,000 employees and operations in 28 countries. 


Corporate Express was acquired by Staples Inc. in 2008. Today the company is known as Staples Advantage.

Solution: Voice, Data Communications, and Data Security Audit

Over the course of a decade, Corporate Express acquired approximately 200 companies and completed mergers with two other large office supply companies.



Infrastructure Audit


These acquisitions resulted in Corporate Express telecommunications department being responsible for diverse systems, facilities, and processes, most of which were not well documented.


As part of a corporate initiative to streamline operations, exclusively selected to audit and document services and equipment for remote locations around the country.   Because of a deep skillset, also authorized to implement recommended changes to both equipment and carrier services.


Put in place teams of telecommunication project managers as well as voice and data engineers strategically located around the country to cover the projects. Some of the many activities that were performed include:


  • Analysis of all voice and data billing (cost reduction)

  • Review and Action on all Network Gear (performance)

  • Review and Recommendation on PBX and Voice systems (cost reduction)

  • Review and order placement on all routing and feature sets (customer contact)

  • Work with local IT staff and Contractors on infrastructure related items (reliability)

Data Security Audit


These acquisitions also resulted in Corporate Express having varying levels of security across the environment.  As part of the Audit process, selected as the sole vendor to analyze security.  Performed the following:


  • Security testing for 8,000 devices

  • Testing of network components

  • Testing of network service such as DNS, DHCP and WINS

  • Assistance rectifying security issues in the field

  • Reporting findings to management


The end result was an IT infrastructure that was significantly more secure, reliable, faster, and more economical. Every audit undertaken resulted in a positive ROI. 



DMZ Design


As part of the Corporate Express e-commerce initiative, selected to design and deploy a complete redesign of the DMZ. Mathematical and statistical modeling was used to engineer solutions for a multibillion dollar transition per year environment.  The design was mandated to include:


  • Hosting for e-commerce and all customer facing services

  • Termination of VPN connections for remote office, home workers and partner companies

  • Caching, application load balancing and other Layer 4-6 functions

  • Placement of Intrusion Detection, Firewalls and other Security Services

  • Load balancing

See additional Corporate Express Case Studies: