Dutch retailer Ahold has announced that it has signed several major IT outsourcing agreements.
 
Ahold signed a five-year contract for global information technology (IT) enterprise outsourcing with EDS, including applications maintenance services in the US. The company also signed a five-year applications maintenance agreement with ATOS ORIGIN, covering the Albert Heijn Arena, and a five-year contract with NCR for in-store IT-support in the Albert Heijn Arena. The total value of the contracts is approximately €467m (US$547.7m).
 
Ahold has agreed to purchase from EDS, on a flexible basis, global IT infrastructure services, and applications management services for its two retail arenas in the US, Stop & Shop/Giant-Landover and Giant-Carlisle/Tops. ATOS ORIGIN will expand its existing applications management services to the Albert Heijn Arena.  Approximately 450 Ahold employees located in the US and the Netherlands will transition to EDS.

Ahold said the development will support its "Road to Recovery" strategic objectives to re-engineer its food retail business and reduce overall IT costs by streamlining the company's infrastructure.

"Our competitive markets and strategic goals require us to focus our attention and resources on our core food retail business," said Anders Moberg, Ahold president and CEO.

Ahold expects aggregate cost savings of approximately €166m in the coming five years as a result of streamlining its IT infrastructure. The calculation of these cost savings includes transition costs that will almost completely be incurred in 2006.