IBM on Thursday said Kenya's Bidco Africa, a large consumer goods manufacturer in East Africa, inked a IT services deal.
The customer win is notable for IBM since Big Blue sees Africa as a key emerging market. While Latin America and China are key markets today, Africa is earlier in its maturation. IBM opened a research facility in Africa in 2013.
Bidco, which makes cooking oil and hygiene products, had been an IBM customer, but decided to get an IT as a service package from Big Blue, which will monitor the stack remotely. Bidco covers 15 African countries and a population of 100 million.
According to the companies, IBM will move Bidco's existing systems and applications to four Power Systems servers, one V7000 Storage system, a Power Systems Hardware Management Console, two storage area network switches and a pair of tape drives. The gear will be housed in Bidco's data center, but owned and operated by IBM.
For its part, IBM will monitor the service remotely. IBM has landed more than 20 banking deals in the last five years along with healthcare services. IBM has more than 20 subsidiaries in Africa.
In its most recent quarter, IBM said sales in Europe, Middle East and Africa were down 13 percent from a year ago. Growth markets sales were down 16 percent.
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