IBM Global Services has signed a nine-year, multimillion dollar outsourcing deal with food manufacturer Heinz to host core ERP and data warehouse applications.
IBM will also provide helpdesk and desktop services, disaster recovery, supply chain consulting and network management for Heinz's LAN and WAN, e-business hosting services business consulting and IT infrastructure development, maintenance and support.
About 24 employees of Heinz Australia and New Zealand will join IBM as part of the agreement.
Heinz IS director David Belcher said this agreement is an extension of a strategic partnership with IBM globally. By outsourcing non-core activity to IBM means the company can focus on brands, customers, products and business processes.
"With IBM taking accountability for day-to-day operation, Heinz IS management is freed up to support growth initiatives and devote more time to strategic planning," Belcher said.
IBM Global Services spokesperson Michelle Bendschneider said with this contract which removes fixed IT costs, Heinz has chosen to move to a services arrangement where it can source full, end-to-end services through one monthly bill.
Bendschneider added that IBM expects to see more consumer products companies follow suit as a way to respond to retailer initiatives, and manage costs.
"The agreement will give Heinz the flexibility to scale IT resources according to business needs," Bendschneider said.