Marks & Spencer (M&S) has signed a seven year contract with Fujitsu Services to provide in-store IT support for 600 stores.

The contract, an extension of the two firms' existing 30 year relationship, includes the installation and ongoing service and support of IT systems more multiple vendors.

Over the last few years, Marks & Spencer has modernised 70 per cent of its stores and implemented new systems.

The retail giant expects Fujitsu to "not only install and support the IT equipment in our stores from multiple vendors, but also identify potential cost savings,” said Damone Quigley, head of infrastructure and application services at Marks & Spencer.

Liam Foley, account director for Marks & Spencer at Fujitsu Services, comments: “As M&S continues the roll-out of in-store IT systems, it is imperative that the milestones of the installation are achieved and till availability is maintained.”

In a separate IT deal, M&S also expanded its IT managed services agreement with Computacenter to help improve its time-to-market for IT systems.

Under the contract, Computacenter will be responsible for full operation of the M&S head office and telephony service desks and supporting head-office Wintel systems that underpin applications used in the retailer's 600-plus UK stores. Computacenter will also be deploying test, development and production virtualised server environments.

Despite the financial troubles plaguing the retail sector, M&S is on a three year £450 million technology refresh road map. The retailer reiterated its intentions to invest in online retail and technology in its annual report in June last year. The plans include introducing new point-of-sale systems, including more than 2,000 new tills and 258 hand-held terminals for stock checking. The store chain will also implement new trading systems and support systems.

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