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Merkur Group Effectively Controls IT Costs With IBM’s Service Management Products


IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced that Merkur Group, a Slovenian-based retailer, is achieving new levels of control over its business by deploying IBM Tivoli to manage its critical IT assets and systems.

IT assets and systems are vital to a retail environment and ensure that sales and inventory data are readily available to help management make quick decisions. Due to Merkur’s strong growth -- IT assets within the organization had tripled in just three years -- the company was challenged to deliver the same high levels of service while reducing costs. Existing manual, ad-hoc solutions for tracking and managing assets were expensive, error-prone and not scalable.

To stay ahead of the growing demand and to ensure that the distributed retail centers had the support they needed, Merkur conducted an extensive evaluation of several competing vendors based on 120 key requirements affecting its business. Following this rigorous review, Merkur selected IBM Tivoli Asset Management for IT and IBM Tivoli Service Request Manager to automate and integrate incident, problem, change, inventory, service level agreements (SLAs) and knowledge management processes.

Merkur has started to roll out the software, with some 16,000 IT assets, including notebook computers, cell phones, monitors, point-of-sale devices and network equipment, now being managed by the Tivoli software. By the end of 2007, plans call for 30,000 assets to be managed.

“By providing a single platform for asset and service management, Tivoli software enables us to finally understand the true cost of our IT services and its impact on profitability,” says Simon Znidar, CIO, Merkur Group. “With this information, we can proactively reduce operational costs while maintaining exceptional service quality.”

“What we’ve seen with Merkur Group is a great example of implementing Tivoli technology to help address a real business need,” said Jack Young, vice president, Maximo development, IBM Tivoli software. “By getting ahead of the growth in IT assets and proactively managing them, Merkur is implementing a solution to support future growth.”

Moving forward, plans call for Merkur to use the Tivoli technology to measure service delivery, track incident response times and evaluate the performance of individual assets. Using this information, Merkur can develop SLAs based on specific needs to ensure the alignment of IT with overall business goals.


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