Case Study: Accenture Assists with an ERP Implementation at NatureWorks


NatureWorks is a global bio-plastics company in Minnesota that’s engaged primarily in the development, production and distribution of biopolymers derived from sustainable and renewable resources. NatureWorks sought an integrated ERP platform to reduce IT costs and promote growth.

The Challenge
A newly formed 50/50 joint venture between Cargill and PTT Global Chemical, NatureWorks had been using multiple legacy applications inherited from its parent companies and lacked the ability to align and manage existing IT and internal systems. As a result, the company was faced with: A lack of integrated standard business processes across all geographies; No centralized data or reporting abilities for analytics and decision-making; A need to improve performance and provide scalability, while controlling costs; and, an inability to plan for future growth.

The Solution

Accenture assisted in performing a 12-week ERP assessment. The client selected SAP ERP Central Component 6.0 as its ERP software, which helps consolidate business data, streamline business processes with consistent, real-time information and clear transparency and quickly respond to customer demands for efficient processes. It also asked Accenture to act as its systems integrator. Employing a cloud-based data center architecture via the Accenture Cloud Group reduced infrastructure and maintenance costs. ACP helped NatureWorks move what ordinarily is a substantial capital cost into a lower cost, and it provided immediate capabilities to run an ERP system.

The Result

The implementation saw the SAP ERP system deployed to 150 users in nine months with no significant disruption to customers. Additionally, Accenture provided six weeks of post go-live support. NatureWorks expects this solution to reduce its IT costs by at least 65 percent primarily driven by the new cloud-based SAP platform and the reduction in legacy applications. The company also made 30 percent efficiency gains during the implementation process. Equally important, the solution provided NatureWorks with a platform to support future growth initiatives.

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