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CPR brings IBM on board to manage computing infrastructure

Canadian Pacific Railway and IBM Canada Ltd. today announced a seven-year agreement valued at approximately $200-mi...


December 2, 2003  


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Canadian Pacific Railway and IBM Canada Ltd. today announced a seven-year agreement valued at approximately $200-million under which IBM will operate and enhance the railway’s computing infrastructure.

The companies said the arrangement is also intended to increase innovation in the railway’s computing environment, generating cost savings, higher productivity and enhanced services for rail customers.

IBM will provide a computing infrastructure that includes servers, storage and emergency recovery planning.

The contract also enables CPR to benefit from technology and business processes and applications developed at IBM’s Centre for Transportation Innovation in Boulder, Col.

“This contract gives CPR the benefit of a strategic partner whose core competencies include building, maintaining and enhancing the computing infrastructure needed to make smart, cost-effective and customer-focused
decisions,” said Rob Ritchie, President and Chief Executive Officer of CPR.

CPR’s mainframe and data facilities in Calgary and Toronto will migrate to IBM facilities in the two cities.

Approximately 100 CPR employees, who perform work covered by the new agreement, will become IBM employees.

As a 24-hour-a-day, 7-day-a-week business, CPR relies heavily on its computing infrastructure to schedule all components of its operations.

Computer applications map out complex interconnections of freight cars,locomotives, facilities, track and train crews to meet more than 10,000 individual customer service commitments every day.

CPR uses intricate automated traffic forecasting systems, determines car routings and yard workloads using bypass and circuitry analysis software, and generates time-distance diagrams to examine track capacity.

An estimated 2.5 trillion bytes of data move across CPR’s information systems every day, which is equivalent to about 2,500 copies of the 40-volume Encyclopedia Britannica.