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ARMONK, NY - 26 Dec 2007: IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced they have signed an agreement with Unilever (NYSE: UN) (NYSE: UL) to transform and manage strategic sourcing and procurement operations for the company's Latin American operations.
The five-year agreement is an expansion of an existing global agreement in which IBM manages Unilever's procurement operations in North America, Asia, Africa, the Middle East and Turkey and for Unilever Central Information Technology (IT).
As part of the agreement, IBM will help Unilever integrate and standardize its procurement practices throughout Latin America. As a result, IBM will consolidate spend management and help reduce overall procurement costs across Unilever's Latin American operations.
The procurement of many of the products and services that Unilever Latin America uses to run its business will be handled by IBM, including office equipment, travel, marketing, and technical services.
Providing Delivery Excellence on a Global Scale
Key to IBM winning this agreement was its existing relationship with Unilever, extensive global delivery network, industry expertise and best-of-breed delivery center support.
"This partnership will allow Unilever to access industry-leading tools and procurement processes," said Sergio Sassi, Senior Vice President, Supply Chain, Unilever Americas. "Leveraging IBM's innovation, technology expertise and worldwide network of procurement centers of excellence will enhance our business processes and allow for greater investments in our brands."
"IBM is committed to delivering quality services to Unilever that will help them optimize its business process performance and deliver bottom line business results," said John Paterson, IBM's Chief Procurement Officer. "By expanding our successful relationship into Latin America, Unilever will be able to streamline its processes and improve efficiencies."
This agreement was signed in December of 2007. IBM will be providing services to Unilever in Latin America from its global delivery center in Hortolandia, Brazil.
For more information on IBM, visit www.ibm.com/services.
Unilever's mission is to add vitality to life. We meet everyday needs for nutrition, hygiene and personal care with brands that help people feel good, look good and get more out of life. Unilever is one of the world's leading suppliers of fast moving consumer goods with strong local roots in more than 100 countries across the globe. Its portfolio includes some of the world's best known and most loved brands including twelve EUR 1 billion brands and global leadership in many categories in which the company operates. The portfolio features brand icons such as Flora, Bertolli, Dove, Lux, Pond's, Lynx, Sunsilk, Persil, Cif and Domestos.
Unilever has around 179,000 employees in approaching 100 countries and generated annual sales of EUR 40 billion in 2006. For more information about Unilever and its brands, visit www.unilever.com.
SAFE HARBOUR STATEMENT: This announcement may contain forward-looking statements, including 'forward-looking statements' within the meaning of the United States Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Words such as 'expects,' 'anticipates,' 'intends' or the negative of these terms and other similar expressions of future performance or results, including financial objectives to 2010, and their negatives are intended to identify such forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are based upon current expectations and assumptions regarding anticipated developments and other factors affecting the Group. They are not historical facts, nor are they guarantees of future performance. Because these forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties, there are important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by these forward-looking statements, including, among others, the ability to reduce procurement costs, competitive pricing and activities, consumption levels, costs, the ability to maintain and manage key customer relationships and supply chain sources, currency values, interest rates, the ability to integrate acquisitions and complete planned divestitures, physical risks, environmental risks, the ability to manage regulatory, tax and legal matters and resolve pending matters within current estimates, legislative, fiscal and regulatory developments, political, economic and social conditions in the geographic markets where the Group operates and new or changed priorities of the Boards. Further details of potential risks and uncertainties affecting the Group are described in the Group's filings with the London Stock Exchange, Euronext Amsterdam and the US Securities and Exchange Commission, including the Annual Report & Accounts on Form 20-F. These forward-looking statements speak only as of the date of this announcement.
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