by Leo King

SABMiller to simplify HR and suppy chain IT

Nov 19, 2009
IT StrategyManufacturing IndustryMobile Apps

Brewer SABMiller is standardising its systems globally, with the aim of saving $300 million (£180 million) every year.

The company, known for brands such as Peroni Nastro Azzurro and Miller Draft, will move key processes and systems onto regional sales platforms, in a four year project.

Its key platform is an SAP enterprise resource planning system, on which sits an Infor supply chain management system.

The ‘business capability’ programme will “simplify processes, reduce costs and allow local management teams to enhance focus on their markets”, it told investors in a financial statement today. Its profits for the six months to 30 September fell 26 percent to $1.5 billion (£896 million), beating market forecasts.

The company added that finance, human resources and procurement operations “will be streamlined by deploying global information systems, establishing a global procurement operation and selectively outsourcing certain activities”. It did not give further details of outsourcing plans.

Sales, distribution and supply chain management will be moves onto “common, regional systems platforms”, it added. It expects to spend $370 million (£222 million) on the programme this year alone, but it maintained that costs will reduce after that.

The move would deliver simplified business management, free up time for strategic plans, integrate procurement and back-office systems, and set common front-office and supply chain management platforms. It would enable “faster, easier sharing of information, knowledge and best practices”, as well as helping the company more easily bring on board any future acquisitions.

Graham Mackay, chief executive at SABMiller, said: “The actions we have taken to position our business globally, to invest in brands and to develop our operational capabilities will continue to underpin our long term growth.”

A year ago rival InBev, which brews the Stella Artois and Becks lagers, said it was gearing up to integrate IT with AnheuserBush as the two companies merged.