Shell Signs Multi-Million Dollar Hardware Deal with IBM

Giant energy provider Royal Dutch/Shell Group has signed a five-year pact to build its IT applications infrastructure on IBM’s eServer systems and storage devices. According to Shell officials, the agreement is valued in excess of $100 million.

Shell has developed a plan to consolidate its global application hosting environment into three worldwide hubs in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, The Hague and Houston. As part of this initiative, called MegaCentre, Shell will be deploying all new hardware, of which IBM will be the primary supplier.

Specifically, IBM will be providing Shell eServer systems, Enterprise Storage Server, tape drives and libraries, storage area network switches, storage management software from Tivoli, and other related technology. In addition, Shell has pre-negotiated options for IBM financing, technical support services and maintenance.

By contracting with IBM as its hardware source, Shell expects to eliminate some of the hardware costs it would have incurred had it not bought in bulk to build out MegaCentre. Furthermore, Shell believes standardizing its infrastructure on IBM servers and storage will foster a more efficient and functional environment.

The Shell-IBM Strategic Alliance for MegaCentre follows an agreement by the two companies earlier this year to collaborate on building one of the world's most powerful Linux supercomputer for seismic research.