“Essextec is an integral part of our team and, thanks to our combined effort; we’ve been able to fulfill our charge of doing more for less.” —Mukesh Sharma, Manager of Database and ERP Infrastructure, Welch’s
Welch’s Foods, Inc., based in Concord, Massachusetts, is known for its many grape- and fruit-based products. What many don’t know, however, is that it operates as a cooperative owned by about 1,200 family farmers in the United States and Canada. Each year, these owners grow and harvest an estimated 320,000 tons of Concord and Niagara grapes. The company then processes these grapes to produce Welch’s branded juices, jams, jellies, and other items. The company’s market extends well beyond the United States and Canada to include nearly 50 countries and territories around the globe. They rely on licensed business partners for distribution in all markets.
To accommodate its vast distribution chain and global customer base, Welch’s IT professionals needed to ensure that core systems were consistently powered and performing at their peak. With the fourth major infrastructure change in a six-year period, the Welch’s team needed to play to their strengths and bring in trusted technology partners to create and implement effective solutions. At the same time, they needed to keep the business running. With an upcoming expansion of Oracle EBS to all of its manufacturing sites, the Welch’s IT team knew they had a big challenge ahead. They needed to maximize 24/7 uptime so manufacturing and shipping operations weren’t jeopardized. With an ROI study conducted by Essextec, the client also recognized the need for a more scalable and stable systems architecture.
Essextec helped Welch’s implement the shift to a new POWER6 processor-based infrastructure, running AIX. Working with its technology partners, Welch’s could properly determine, select, and size the right AIX servers and the best storage technology solutions. The system was virtualized and further expanded to utilize business intelligence (BI) solutions, and to act as a high-availability (HA) system.
As a support to Welch’s knowledgeable in-house IT team, Essextec was a crucial partner in making this project a success. Together, the teams’ solutions were able to successfully: improve server performance up to 60%; consolidate storage; improve overall response time; increase system flexibility, stability, and durability; and reduce costs.
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