Colgate-Palmolive taps IBM for hardware infrastructure

Colgate-Palmolive Co. is changing its computer systems, including servers, storage, software and PCs, to an IBM Corp. infrastructure that will run its mission-critical infrastructure beginning with Colgate’s global SAP AG systems.

The change has already begun. New York-based Colgate-Palmolive is installing IBM’s pSeries Unix servers, IBM’s Enterprise Storage Servers and Tivoli enterprise management software, a switchover that marks a 10 to 1 server consolidation and a 40 per cent boost in performance over Colgate’s old systems, according to Colgate and IBM.

Colgate-Palmolive said it’s also increasing the availability and flexibility of its SAP data by setting up a 50TB storage-area network (SAN). The IBM systems running SAP are to be fully installed by next year.

Colgate-Palmolive didn’t immediately disclose which vendor systems it’s replacing. But the company did say in its statement that its current SAP software manages business operations in 51 countries, representing 90 per cent of the company’s revenue. SAP applications include supply chain, order entry, accounts receivable, human resources and data warehouse.

Colgate’s business data warehouse, which will run on IBM’s eServers and Shark disk arrays, will allow its managers access to information from around the world, such as the price of raw materials in dozens of markets.

Colgate-Palmolive also plans to standardize worldwide on IBM notebook and desktop computers, using IBM’s ImageUltra technology, which develops one software image that can be installed on all new PCs.