Sears Roebuck is in final negotiations with Computer Sciences to outsource part of its IT operations in a deal potentially worth $2bn over 10 years.
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The deal is valued at about $200m a year and would provide services for up to 10 years. It is expected to be signed sometime in the second quarter of the year.
Among the IT responsibilities to be outsourced are servers, systems support for Sears-related websites, client devices (including laptops, procurement and support for desktops PCs), helpdesk staffing, asset management, IT risk management and voice and data telephone networks.
There are approximately 260 employees in Sears' technical infrastructure support services department. Sears expected CSC would hire most of them.
Another 900 IT workers responsible for the company's mainframe systems and retail systems will not be affected by the deal, nor will the separate IT operations of Lands' End, which Sears acquired in 2002.
IBM Global Services, Hewlett-Packard, Electronic Data Systems and Affiliated Computer Services pitched for the deal.
Under the deal, Sears will retain responsibility for overall technology standards, architecture and service policies inside the company.
Todd R Weiss writes for Computerworld