ShopNBC taps IBM to meet holiday demand

FRAMINGHAM (12/19/2003) - One of the nation's largest home shopping networks, ShopNBC, has selected IBM Corp.'s high-end Unix eServer p690s to run its entire retail operation and to help the company respond to the demands of the holiday shopping season, the companies announced Friday.

As part of the multiyear agreement, the p690s will act as the foundation for the company's growing data center, which manages its most mission-critical e-commerce and in-store retail operations.

Eden Prairie, Minn.-based ShopNBC said it will use the p690s to process hundreds of thousands of orders during the holiday season from customers ordering from its home shopping channel and its online Web site, ShopNBC.com.

"We have been a longtime IBM Unix customer, relying on powerful IBM eServer technology to help meet the needs of our growing business," ShopNBC CIO Steve Danker said in a statement. "When it came time for us to upgrade our infrastructure, we wanted reliable and scalable systems that would respond to seasonal increases in computing power and allow for enterprise growth."

Karl Freund, vice president of pSeries for IBM Systems Group, said the significance of the deal is that it further demonstrates the incredible success customers are having with the large-scale p690s.

Charles King, an analyst at The Sageza Group Inc. in Mountain View, Calif., agreed.

"Quite a bit of the wins that IBM has been getting with the p690s have been in the high-performance space over the past year or so like the cluster systems it sold to DaimlerChrylser that they were using for doing crash simulation," King said. "In a sense a retail transaction-processing win is across the market from that. And being able to show that the p690 is not only capable of performing well but also capable of grabbing market share in that space is good for IBM."

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