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Cogent Holdings Limited, From A to B with IP

Cogent Holdings Limited
Cogent Holdings Limited


  • Provide a scalable, flexible and easily managed communications infrastructure to support a move to new state-of-the-art premises

Value Created

  • New capabilities for staff – allowing roaming and mobile use within a single solution

  • Simplified management

  • Easy for non-technical staff to use

  • Video conferencing platform included

  • Substantially reduced internal communications costs

  • SIP trunking replacing ISDN – simpler infrastructure and further savings

  • Network can grow with the business

Singapore logistics company sees IP Office as the most direct way to take its communications forward

The move to a new flagship logistics hub provided Cogent Holdings the ideal opportunity to upgrade its communications systems and improve team engagement. It selected Avaya IP Office, delivered by StarHub, to replace four older networks – reducing costs, increasing flexibility and offering a user-friendly platform to support its future growth plans.

With the world’s first rooftop container depot, Cogent Holdings’ huge integrated logistics hub is a new landmark in Singapore’s busy port district. The building is designed to consolidate all the group’s operations – warehousing, container depot and transportation services – under one roof, delivering efficiencies for customers and for the business itself.

New platform for new premises

For its new premises, Cogent wanted a communication platform that was as contemporary, cost-effective and flexible as the building would be – and would help its teams engage with one another more effectively. Previously, the company had used four different systems, some up to a decade old, across its different offices. This not only created complexity in terms of managing change; it also meant that many of the specific features of the systems were under-used. Even IT manager Desmond Yuen admitted that he had barely touched some of the buttons on his old deskphone.

Obviously we could make savings on internal calls with IP telephony, but with SIP we can simplify our infrastructure and save much more.

The clear winner

With these requirements in mind, and a clear desire to reduce communication costs, Desmond and his team set about selecting a solution for the new hub. “We evaluated products from all the leading vendors,” Desmond confirmed. “Without a doubt, Avaya IP Office is the most cost-effective while offering the most useful features.”

Cogent opted for a virtualized IP Office solution, delivered by Singapore service provider and Avaya partner StarHub. As part of the implementation, the existing ISDN lines between Cogent’s offices were removed; instead, Cogent embraced StarHub’s SIP trunking offer to drive additional cost savings. SIP is relatively new to the Singapore market, but Desmond recognized its potential in terms of simplifying expansion and adding new sites. “Obviously we could make savings on internal calls with IP telephony,” he explained, “but with SIP we can simplify our infrastructure and save much more.”

We evaluated products from all the leading vendors, and without a doubt Avaya IP Office is the most cost-effective while offering the most useful features.

Easy to use from desk to depot

Simplification doesn’t just equate to savings: because the Avaya toolset is so easy to use, there would be real benefits for Cogent staff. “The majority of our people work in the warehouse or depot environment,” said Desmond. “They aren’t IT experts, and want their everyday working tools to be easy to use. Avaya delivers that: the handsets are intuitive and the features easy to set up. People want to use the Avaya phones rather than previous ones.” That in turn will drive productivity, as it becomes easier to contact staff as they roam around the new hub.

Management too is far simpler. “We didn’t have the knowledge or resource to manage all four different solutions,” Desmond reflected, “but now there’s just one, and it’s simple to work with.” The Cogent team can carry out many of the day-to-day management tasks itself, or turn to StarHub or even Avaya.

“We’re very satisfied with the support Avaya have provided throughout,” he concluded. “The initial demonstrations were clear and compelling. Then since we started working with them, they’ve been quick to resolve issues and open to meeting with our senior management to explain how the solutions would work.”

Successful change

The intention is to add further Avaya solutions, to enable ad hoc video conferencing for example. For now though, Cogent is adapting to life in its new hub – and with Avaya’s solutions proving so intuitive for users, and with the solution supported by StarHub, that change has been an easy one to embrace.

About StarHub LTD.

StarHub prides itself as a business partner that looks after the unique needs of every business. As a firm believer of partnership and innovation, StarHub puts great significance in challenging ever-changing industry trends and working with customers to create cutting-edge solutions that propel businesses forward.

Today, StarHub offers a growing suite of ICT solutions ranging from network to mobility services that allow companies to optimise productivity at lower costs. StarHub presents the latest suite of solutions, from a range of best-in-class partners, to help businesses achieve exponential growths. Boosted by the ultra-high speed fibre-based Next Generation Nationwide Broadband Network, StarHub solutions harness the power of cloud and mobility, translating them into effective solutions that truly transform businesses.


About Cogent Holdings Limited

Cogent Holdings Limited and its subsidiaries (“Cogent”) started as a family business providing point-to-point cargo transportation with a small fleet of trucks in the 1960s. Today it has grown into one of Singapore’s leading logistics management service providers and a highly regarded listed company with a broad-based clientele that ranges from large local companies to multinational companies. It recently completed the move to a brand new logistics hub, which is one of the largest in Singapore.

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