European Retailer Relies on SAP HANA In-Memory Computing on the Hitachi Unified Compute Platform to Make Quicker Business Decisions
SANTA CLARA, Jul 1, 2014 — Hitachi Data Systems Corporation (HDS), a wholly owned subsidiary of Hitachi, Ltd. (TSE: 6501), today announces that SPAR Austria Group has chosen Hitachi Unified Compute Platform (UCP) as the heart of its strategic SAP HANA initiative that the company hopes will power its future success and expansion in the retail industry. After significant planning and research, SPAR Information & Communication Services (ICS), together with long-term strategic partner Imtech ICT Austria, chose to migrate its SAP Business Warehouse (BW) infrastructure to Hitachi Data Systems technology.
"SPAR is moving away from being mainly an Austrian retail company to becoming a central European retail group. This change gives IT an even greater strategic importance in the success of the business. Using real-time data analytics with SAP HANA, we're able to stay competitive by making quicker business decisions and ultimately by providing better service to our customers," said Andreas Kranabitl, managing director at SPAR ICS GmbH. "Thanks to Hitachi Data Systems and Imtech, we are able to scale our SAP HANA landscape, and the Hitachi Unified Compute Platform solution gives us the high performance we need to support our future vision as a group."
The solution from Hitachi Data Systems and Imtech was selected by SPAR ICS primarily due to the scalability of Hitachi Unified Compute Platform (UCP) for the SAP HANA Platform. This datacenter class solution not only delivers maximum performance, scalability and availability for SPAR Austria Group, but also the advanced SAP HANA technology on an integrated and optimized converged platform. The solution matches the high performance requirements SPAR Austria Group needs in order to improve its business processes and increase its competitiveness.
The UCP for SAP HANA that SPAR deployed includes two Hitachi Virtual Storage Platform (VSP) systems and two enterprise-class Hitachi Compute Blade servers. On top of the technology excellence, the rapid implementation capability, outstanding level of professionalism and optimal price/performance ratio all stood out for SPAR during its decision making process. These attributes were important for SPAR when they chose Hitachi Data Systems and Imtech as the ideal providers for the new converged solution. HDS and Imtech together created a powerful foundation for SAP HANA with over 150TB of capacity and plans for significant future growth.
In-Memory Computing Defies Big Data
UCP for SAP HANA helps companies speed up, simplify and economize decision-making processes through real-time, in-memory analytics. These capabilities deliver enormous advantages in big data analysis, and greatly accelerate the speed of business decisions. Today, the solution supports SAP Business Information Warehouse (BW) for SAP HANA and provides the necessary scalability for the whole company.
"Our Hitachi UCP for SAP HANA solution is the ideal choice for SPAR as a retail company. SPAR is not only introducing SAP's innovation roadmap into its group but also is an early adopter of tomorrow's technology platform for the retail business. This will allow SPAR to respond quickly to market changes in the best way possible," said Matthias Czwikla, vice president Global SAP Field Alliance at Hitachi Data Systems. "This is an exciting time for both SPAR and Hitachi Data Systems who are currently undergoing business transformation and we look forward to continuing to grow our relationship."
The Hitachi scale-out architecture lets SAP HANA run in business-critical environments without interruption. Hitachi Compute Blade server technologies, Hitachi Virtual Storage Platform, and the Hitachi Unified Storage (HUS) family of enterprise storage systems ensure a high level of availability and uninterrupted operation. The use of the Hitachi NAS Platform (HNAS) solution as part of the overall architecture allows a consolidated, high-performance, end-to-end backup solution with no interruption of service.
With a view toward future trends such as predictive retail, SPAR's new SAP HANA solution is an investment in future-proof, high-performance technology and is now supported by an extremely agile IT architecture, benefitting the entire company. In addition to SAP BW, SPAR is also installing SAP Customer Relationship Management (CRM) for HANA, and evaluating future projects for the transition to HANA for the existing SAP Finance, Controlling, Human Resources systems. The SAP retail solution is also on SPAR's HANA roadmap.
HDS and Imtech: A Partnership With Added Value
SPAR has placed its trust in the strategic partnership of Hitachi Data Systems and Imtech for the joint completion of long-term, complex IT projects. Imtech previously managed the SAP landscape at SPAR and now, together with HDS, is able to offer the company business-relevant data analysis combined with a professional team with optimal support.
"The challenges and problems we faced previously at SPAR ICS were due to the complex existing infrastructure and associated high costs. Together with HDS and its single enterprise converged solution, we were able to create a future-proof IT environment capable of handling SPAR's requirements as a growing retail company," says Andreas Weigl, sales manager, Western region, Imtech ICT Austria.
About SPAR Austria Group
SPAR Austria Group is a 100 percent Austrian company. The food retail supplier is the market leader in hypermarkets and shopping centers and offers modern logistics solutions, innovative products and much more. SPAR Austria Group is a Central European retail group that also operates in Italy, Hungary, Slovenia, the Czech Republic and Croatia. Around half of the group revenue is generated outside of Austria. In 2013, SPAR Austria Group achieved total sales revenues of € 12.94 billion, corresponding to a plus of 2.9 percent year on year. SPAR holds a 29.9 percent share of the food retail market, once again making it the growth leader in the Austrian food retail sector. With 41,000 employees in Austria, SPAR is the country's largest private employer. In total, about 77,000 employees form part of SPAR Austria Group. www.spar.at
Imtech ICT Austria is one of Austria's leading enterprise IT companies. With 376 employees at 6 locations in Austria and 3 foreign branches (in Germany, France and Romania) Imtech ICT Austria operates in close proximity to its customers. Its portfolio ranges from infrastructure solutions - equipped with components from leading manufacturers - to application know-how and solutions on an SAP basis and expertise in the logistics and retail sector. The cloud services provided via the company's data centres in Austria are state-of-the-art alternatives and give customers the opportunity to outsource their IT. www.imtech-ict.at
About Hitachi Data Systems
Hitachi Data Systems provides information technologies, services and solutions that help companies improve IT costs and agility, and innovate with information to make a difference in the world. Our customers gain compelling return on investment (ROI), unmatched return on assets (ROA), and demonstrable business impact. With approximately 6,300 employees worldwide, Hitachi Data Systems does business in more than 100 countries and regions. Our products, services and solutions are trusted by the world's leading enterprises, including more than 70% of the Fortune 100 and more than 80% of the Fortune Global 100. Visit us at www.HDS.com.
About Hitachi, Ltd.
Hitachi, Ltd. (TSE: 6501), headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, delivers innovations that answer society's challenges with our talented team and proven experience in global markets. The company's consolidated revenues for fiscal 2013 (ended March 31, 2014) totaled 9,616 billion yen ($93.4 billion). Hitachi is focusing more than ever on the Social Innovation Business, which includes infrastructure systems, information & telecommunication systems, power systems, construction machinery, high functional materials & components, automotive systems, healthcare and others. For more information on Hitachi, please visit the company's website at http://www.hitachi.com.
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