Daimler has signed a multi-year deal with Infosys for datacentre operations in Europe.
Under the contract, Infosys will provide operations support and project services to enable the car company to operate its European datacentre facilities.
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Infosys will also provide e-collaboration and middleware services and oversee database operations.
The services will be provided by Infosys staff out of Daimler’s Bangalore office.
Daimler’s European datacentres will effectively be run by Infosys, which will ensure servers and other datacentre hardware and middleware remains operational . “Our job is to keep lights on,” Ruchir Budhwar, associate vice president and head of automotive in Europe at Infosys, told Computer Weekly.
Infosys said it would also support continuous improvement and implementation of best practices in datacentre operations and standardise service delivery. According to Infosys, the contract lays the foundation for optimising datacentre operations using secure cloud technologies.
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Budhwar said there has been growing demand from automotive manufacturers for legacy IT refreshment and support for new digitally enabled initiatives. In Germany there is a government-driven Industry 4.0 initiative to move industries to smart manufacturing.
He said IT companies are looking at the opportunities in this market as car makers work to modernise their factories. “Smart manufacturing is about machine-to-machine communications and self-diagnostic and self-correcting machines.” He believes such technology will evolve over the next three to five years.
He added that Infosys was seeing interest in connected and driver-less cars.
Infosys has been steadily growing its automotive industry expertise to win business in this market, Budhwar said.
Last year the company signed deals with BMW and Toyota Europe for application maintenance and transformational projects.
The five-year BMW contract covers services such as maintenance and operation of the web infrastructure, content management, SAP basis operations, the company’s internal IT system, and the group’s business intelligence systems. One of the key objectives of the partnership is delivery of reliable, efficient and predictable IT services, according to Infosys.
Social CRM in the automotive industry will emerge as a way to connect cars to dealership networks and customers
In March this year, Volvo Cars signed a deal with Infosys for consulting, technology and outsourcing. Through the contract Infosys is providing application development services for Volvo’s global operations.
Outside Europe, Volkswagen America partnered with Infosys to optimise its order management and distribution operations.
Budhwar said: “There are also new business opportunities driven by the digital ecosystem together with next-generation retail landscapes in the dealer network.”
He predicted that social CRM in the automotive industry would emerge as a way to connect cars to dealership networks and customers. “Today you have B2C websites [customers] and business-to-dealership websites. In the future, if there is a problem with the car, a notification could be sent to the dealer, who will be ready to repair the car when it is taken in.”
A dealership could be alerted when the financing period for a car is about to expire, according to Budhwar, and then fire off new customer financing offers.