Diageo (credit image/Pixabay/Alexas_Fotos)Diageo, the maker of Guinness, Smirnoff and Johnnie Walker have announced a five-year business transformation programme in partnership with SAP and IBM. This new initiative, which marks the company’s most significant investment in technology and services, will redesign and improve Diageo’s processes. The programme is expected to cover the 180 countries where it operates.

Fully global in nature, the programme will revolutionise Diageo’s IT environment. It is expected to introduce intuitive processes, powered by market-leading technology. Furthermore, provide more information to enable the company to make better and quicker decisions. This transformation will enhance Diageo’s business resilience in a constantly evolving external landscape. Improve its customer service offering and help the company adapt to a fast-changing consumer base.

The programme involves a move to RISE with SAP S/4 HANA Cloud, with the support of IBM Consulting. Diageo’s implementation of the new cloud-based model will ensure its IT infrastructure is simplified and supported in a unified way.

IBM Consulting has been selected to lead the project. The company has a proven track record in the consumer sector, supporting client transformations and migrations to the SAP S/4 HANA Cloud platform. Diageo, SAP and IBM will work together to apply the latest technology to make Diageo’s business more efficient.

Transforming Diageo’s operations

The five-year programme will transform Diageo’s business finance operations in several areas including:

  • Advanced workflow solutions will allow orders to be tracked in real-time on a global scale. The solution is expected to facilitate more effective customer engagement and better customer service.
  • By moving to a single operating platform, Diageo will simplify its technology support model and IT landscape. This will make it easier for the company to do business and evolve amid changing consumer trends and market needs.
  • The programme will transform Diageo’s performance reporting capabilities, giving the company better insight into trade and growth opportunities.
  • The digitisation of controls and compliance will make the business more robust, resilient and adaptable to changing market conditions.

Investment in digital transformation

(Credit image/LinkedIn/Lavanya Chandrashekar)
Lavanya Chandrashekar, Chief Financial Officer, Diageo

Lavanya Chandrashekar, Chief Financial Officer, Diageo, said, “This partnership with IBM and SAP demonstrates our continued investment in digital transformation. It will enable greater agility in how we respond to our global consumer and customer needs. It will provide us with world-class actionable insights and enhanced data capabilities. This will support growth whilst allowing us to be more efficient in our day-to-day operations.”

Scott Russell, Executive Board Member, Customer Success at SAP, said, “In today’s disruptive consumer goods industry. Success lies in navigating unpredictable supply chains, managing ongoing macro-economic volatility and staying one step ahead of ever-shifting customer demands. Through our continued partnership with Diageo, one of the world’s leading brand builders. We are proud to support them in building a more resilient business that is enhancing the customer experience. We can adapt to a rapidly changing market pressures, realising its vision to revolutionise the consumer goods industry.”

Rahul Kalia, Managing Partner, IBM Consulting, UK & Ireland, said, “The consumer goods industry is striving to address the challenges posed by inflationary pressures and supply chain disruptions, while staying focused on delivering exceptional products and services for its customers and consumers. IBM is proud to partner with Diageo and SAP to bring our global business and digital transformation experience on this exciting journey.”

Enterprise Times: What this means for businesses

The beverage industry endures rapid changes in consumer tastes and styles during an era of economic uncertainty. The Ukrainian war, disrupted global supply chains, increasing inflation, high rates of interest and cost-of-living crisis has impacted consumer spending. However, some key consumer segments remain untouched by the crisis as individuals continue to indulge in their favourite beverages. Some market segments have expanded by 36% compared to pre-pandemic levels, driven by the demand for premium alcohol and reflects changing consumer tastes. Hence Diageo’s collaboration with SAP and IBM. The partnership is expected to leverage expertise to update Diageo’s IT environment and standardise its business operations across 180 countries.

Companies like Diageo must utilise innovative solutions that provide a better understanding of consumer requirements. Those solutions will be needed to cater the wide-ranging needs of this constantly evolving market.


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