February 23, 2009 12:00 ET

IBM to Support Streamlined European Procurement for Unilever

ARMONK, NY--(Marketwire - February 23, 2009) - IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced an agreement to support the transformation and ongoing management of procurement operations for Unilever Europe's non-production items (NPI). This will allow Unilever to more effectively manage NPI spend while maintaining strong business governance and process compliance.

The agreement builds on similar IBM procurement implementations for other Unilever regions and the current Finance Business Services agreement in Europe. It will streamline Unilever's European procurement system with an integrated procure-to-pay process, enabling the consumer goods giant to drive significant bottom-line benefits.

Tony Cronin, General Manager MBPS, IBM Europe, said, "Extending the global process to Unilever's European operations will help the business to achieve significant benefits. Unilever will gain from IBM's leadership in helping consumer goods companies adopt technology solutions in the fastest time with the least risk."

IBM will service the routine elements of NPI procurement operations from Budapest. The IBM hosted global procurement system will be rolled-out to Europe with maintenance services performed out of Bangalore, India. The contract was signed in December 2008 and implementation will be completed as a phased programme over the next two years in consultation with relevant social partners.

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