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How a Toyota supplier saved $1 million in maintenance costs by updating its tech infrastructure

By Teena Maddox, for TechRepublic

Apr 19, 2017

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AW North Carolina (AWNC) has spent about $1.2 million to update its Wi-Fi coverage and network firewall and to install a Cisco converged infrastructure solution in its Durham, NC factory. In the first nine months of operation the new equipment has already saved the company $1 million in maintenance costs.

Even better, about 40% of the savings will be ongoing and realized annually, said John Peterson, IT plant manager for AWNC. AWNC is a subsidiary of Aisin AW, a major global automatic transmission manufacturer located in Anjo City, Japan that operates 200 factories worldwide.

AWNC's 1.3 million-square-foot factory supplies Toyota with more than 600,000 transmissions every year. There's little room for downtime, but like many manufacturing plants, the existing equipment was dated. Downtime at AWNC costs $172,000 an hour, so it's crucial to get systems up and running as quickly as possible.

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