Lagardère is one of the main players in the media sector and number 1 in radio and TV production in France and Spain. Furthermore, the group is one of France’s leading magazine publishers. Lagardère Media News is behind radio stations such as Europe 1, Virgin and RFM, and popular magazines such as JDD and Paris Match.
Since the foundation of Europe 1 in 1955, the radio stations of Lagardère Media News had been producing their shows at rue François 1er in the heart of Paris. At the end of 2018, the 860 employees left the historical building to move to what used to be the head office of Canal+ in the 15th arrondissement, the Parisian media district.
The extensive construction work beforehand had taken two years. The entire voice and data network for the offices, ten recording studios, and 28 production rooms had been newly planned and designed. The cabling of the 14,000 square meter building also had to be replaced in entirety.
R&M wins the public tender
The two Lagardère project managers knew exactly what they were looking for. Julien Delucinges, IT architect for radio at Lagardère, is responsible for the entire cable and IT infrastructure and everything that entails. He is supported by Cyrille Laroque, infrastructure administrator, responsible for office and building cabling.
The most important requirements for Lagardère were that the solutions would be future-proof, give excellent performance and support future applications. They, therefore, opted for Cat. 6A components for the copper area (10 Gigabit and 4PPoE) as well as OM4 and OS2 products (LC connectors) for the optical connections. The solution would have to support massive amounts of data. An important criterion in the product selection was reliability and the 25-year warranty. «We have known R&M for six years now and already deploy R&M solutions. And that’s why we asked them for an offer for this project, too,» explains Julien Delucinges.
Numerous challenges for implementation
A joint venture of three installation companies – Mermin, BMS, and Vidélio – was responsible for implementation, under the direction of Vidélio.
«It wasn’t just the tight deadlines that were a challenge in this project, but also the laying of the cables. Some of the hollow floors in the building are 100 m long which proved difficult in terms of installation. Solutions also had to be found for the gangways. The work lasted more than six months and mostly went off smoothly. We particularly appreciate the fact that R&M developed a customized cabling solution (copper cable bundle) for our special switches. This also includes a sophisticated numbering system for labeling the cable ends,» continues Julien Delucinges.
«To ensure interruption-free continuous operation, we selected a high-performance solution with redundant connections and high-density singlemode fibers for the 4G-AV equipment in the studios,» adds Cyrille Laroque.
The network infrastructure comprises two main computer rooms, 14-floor distributors for the offices and five technical rooms for the studios.
«We have been working with R&M for many years. The quality of the products is simply outstanding. As this project involved the installation of many components with a production time of three to four weeks, the consistent support and step-by-step coordination through our R&M contact were all the more important for us,» confirms Bertrand Bossier from installer BMS.
Julien Delucinges, IT architect for radio, Lagardère
We particularly appreciate the fact that R&M developed a customized cabling solution for our special switches. This also includes a sophisticated numbering system for cable labeling.