Tesco Chosen as Finalist for Citrix 2009 Innovation Award

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Tesco Chosen as Finalist for Citrix 2009 Innovation Award

U.K.-based grocer Tesco yesterday was named one of three finalists for the 2009 Citrix Innovation Award. The company was chosen for its innovative use of virtualization and networking solutions to simplify its IT businesses.

Tesco was looking to increase operational efficiency and drive growth and expansion, while maintaining competitive pricing for shoppers already cash-strapped due to current economic conditions. To achieve this goal, the chain instituted updates to its mission-critical Real Time Sales (RTS) systems, virtualizing key business applications with Citrix System’s XenServer.

With infrastructure from Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.-based Citrix in place, Tesco upped its RTS capacity by 75 percent, handling 1,500 sales-related messages per second, supporting the business-critical nature of the RTS systems and creating room for growth. After the success of the initial project to virtualize RTS, Tesco has continued to leverage XenServer for a major server consolidation project. Citrix is working closely with Tesco to virtualize 1,500 physical servers on XenServer, including 80 XenApp servers.

Tesco’s goal is a 10:1 consolidation ratio for physical to virtual servers, and the company is now hitting 70 percent CPU utilization on its virtualized servers, a vast improvement over the previous 6 percent. While adding physical servers would require an increase in power and cooling, virtualization has better equipped Tesco to hit its target of reducing carbon emissions from its U.K. data centers by 20 percent. This added benefit allowed Tesco to begin the virtualization technology upgrade earlier than expected, by leveraging funds set aside for a corporate environmental project.

Finalists for the 2009 Citrix Innovation Award were selected by a panel of IT industry experts, including industry analysts, Citrix executives and a previous Innovation Award winner. The 2009 Innovation Award winner will be announced live at Citrix Synergy 2009, and will be honoted at the upcoming Citrix Synergy 2009 conference, to be held at the MGM Grand Hotel in Las Vegas from May 4 to May 7.