Servers & Systems: The Right Compute

From bottleneck to powerhouse: Leverage in-memory computing and SAP HANA to empower retail business

Slow growth and increasing consumer demands challenge the retail market. Learn how to tackle these challenges with accelerated data insights, thanks to in-memory computing and SAP HANA.

Retail grocery_in memory computing_HPE_blog.jpg “How do we avoid the waste and financial loss of overstocking products? When do we need to adjust prices? Faster data generation with the HPE solution supports better business decisions.”

These are the words of Alan Jensen, CIO, Dansk Supermarked Group, one of hundreds of retailers leveraging the power of in-memory computing, SAP HANA and HPE solutions to thrive in a hyper-competitive industry.

Denmark’s largest retailer, Dansk Supermarked Group, runs several e-commerce businesses and four retail chains—føtex, Bilka, Netto and Salling—with nearly 1500 stores across Denmark, Sweden, Poland and Germany. Serving 9 million customers, DSG employs over 50,000 workers. DSG was facing the typical challenges found in retail: thin margins, increasingly savvy customers and stiff competition.

I've been blogging about using large-scale in-memory computing to address data challenges across the retail landscape. I believe that success in retail is increasingly dependent on the ability to process and analyze massive amounts of data to speed up business decisions—and this is exactly what DSG has achieved. This project originated when DSG realized that its IBM Power and DB2 platform supporting the SAP Business Warehouse could not load the growing data sets fast enough to generate timely reports. With DSG’s 50TB database growing by 2TB a month, that problem was only going to get worse, unless the company transformed its IT environment to enable real-time analytics.

DSG decided to migrate to the SAP HANA in-memory computing platform, and needed an SAP partner to deliver an end-to-end solution integrating hardware, software and IT management services. HPE was the choice. These results speak for themselves:

  • 30-40% faster POS reporting with new data hub, for better daily inventory decisions to maximize revenue and minimize waste
  • 200 staff hours a day saved with faster report generation, freeing up staff to perform more valuable activities

Leveraging the power of data—with daily store insights and forward-looking business transformation

Every morning before the stores open, store managers at DSG can review in detail exactly what customers purchased the day before. They’re not looking at guesses based on analysis of data subsets. They’re not waiting a few hours after the store opens to receive reports. They’re looking at comprehensive, personalized reports that empower them to make the best possible inventory stocking decisions to satisfy customers, increase revenue and reduce waste. That keeps DSG thriving and eases the pressure on profit margins.

At the top executive level, DSG is now empowered to pursue its growth goals such as opening more stores, introducing a new convenience store format and pursing e-commerce opportunities. This IT project has turned into a transformative business initiative and in the process, DSG IT has gone from being a bottleneck to an agile powerhouse, enabling business growth and success.


Whether you are in the retail business or not, you might be thinking about leveraging in-memory computing to accelerate insights and fully realize the power of your data. SAP HANA might be in your plans, and if that's the case, I invite you to look at our solution portfolio and learn about the success of companies like yours who have partnered with HPE for their HANA deployments. Not only we do offer a broad portfolio of solutions optimized for HANA but also a variety of services and consumption options. Most importantly, the offer the expertise that comes from being the market leader coupled with our end-to-end partnership with SAP.

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About the Author


David focuses on SAP HANA lifecycle and ecosystem for HPE solutions for SAP HANA. He was previously employed by SAP focusing on SAP HANA Enterprise Architecture tools. David has more than 30 years of industry experience in both technical and business roles, working with small, start-up, and established businesses.