IBM and SAP Join Forces to Revolutionize the Consumer Industry with AI


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  • IBM and SAP partner to enhance consumer industries with AI.
  • Integration of IBM’s WatsonX AI aims to optimize deliveries and reduce waste.
  • The collaboration promises greener last-mile delivery and improved business outcomes for consumer goods companies.

IBM, the industry giant in artificial intelligence, is joining forces with ERP specialist SAP to revolutionize supply chain, finance operations, sales, and services for consumer packaged goods and retail industries through generative AI. 

This groundbreaking collaboration aims to embed IBM’s WatsonX enterprise-ready AI and data platform and AI assistants into SAP solutions. By doing so, they plan to develop innovative, generative, and traditional AI solutions, specifically targeting the complexities of the direct store delivery business process and product portfolio management.

Enhancing operations in the consumer industry

On a global and regional scale, consumer industry organizations face the challenge of managing diverse commerce applications while needing advanced insights to provide proactive recommendations that enhance operations and meet customer expectations. 

Luq Niazi, the Global Managing Partner of Industries and Global Consumer Industry at IBM Consulting, explains, “With SAP, we are looking to build on the long-standing work of incorporating AI into SAP solutions that can help enterprise clients achieve further business value.”

One of the key aspects of this collaboration involves integrating external data, such as weather conditions, traffic data, and local events, into SAP’s Direct Distribution solution. By leveraging AI, this integration aims to assist consumer packaged goods companies identify optimal store delivery routes, ultimately reducing costs and carbon footprints. 

Real-time updates will empower delivery drivers to make informed decisions based on local conditions, ensuring efficient deliveries.

Customized recommendations at the store level

At the individual store level, the collaborative solutions aspire to provide specific product recommendations. Leveraging AI-driven preliminary planning based on historical sales patterns, anticipated demand, and current product assortments, these solutions aim to maximize sales while minimizing waste. 

Additionally, they will streamline order settlement processes, delivering operational efficiencies to consumer goods companies.

Leveraging SAP business technology platform and WatsonX

IBM Consulting plans to develop these innovative solutions using the SAP Business Technology Platform (SAP BTP) and will seamlessly integrate WatsonX through APIs. This integration promises an enriched user experience for warehouse planners, frontline delivery associates, and client representatives by harnessing WatsonX Assistant to create chatbots with IBM’s conversational search capabilities.

EJ Kenney, Senior Vice President of the Consumer Products Industry and Life Sciences Business Unit at SAP, expressed enthusiasm about the collaboration, stating, “At SAP, we look forward to collaborating with IBM on this important initiative to help consumer goods companies transform their operations and improve their bottom line. 

We understand the complexities of managing direct store delivery, and by leveraging the power of AI, we aim to help our customers better manage their last-mile distribution more effectively, minimize waste, improve customer satisfaction, and achieve business value in today’s fast-paced consumer industry.”

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Benson Mawira

Benson is a blockchain reporter who has delved into industry news, on-chain analysis, non-fungible tokens (NFTs), Artificial Intelligence (AI), etc.His area of expertise is the cryptocurrency markets, fundamental and technical analysis.With his insightful coverage of everything in Financial Technologies, Benson has garnered a global readership.

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