Case Study

Global retailer modernized outdated IT systems with Azure Cloud Services, expects to increase IT productivity by nearly 50%

When outdated mainframe systems prevented the company from growing its tire business, the company modernized its IT systems and gained the scalability, agility, and reliability it needed to expand. The IT team also expects to increase productivity by 40-50%.


This American multinational company is one of the leading big-box retail chains worldwide. With more than 750 locations across the globe, it employs more than 300,000 people and generates annual revenue of nearly $250 billion.


Outdated systems prevented sales growth

Our client wanted to grow the tire segment of its business by increasing sales and profitability. However, the company’s legacy mainframe system had become a bottleneck, preventing it from achieving its growth targets. The outdated hardware, databases, and applications lacked scalability, struggled to integrate seamlessly with contemporary cloud systems, failed to deliver the reliability required by the company, and resulted in challenges with user profile management. Recognizing these shortcomings, company leaders opted to overhaul their IT infrastructure by transitioning to cloud technologies.


Cloud modernization transformed IT infrastructure

Following a business continuity and disaster recovery (BCDR) migration strategy, UST cloud experts devised a phased plan to migrate the retailer’s legacy on-premise systems to a new microservices architecture in a Microsoft Azure Cloud Services environment. Phase one included user interfaces, applications, images, and the like, and phase two focused on moving data to Azure Cosmos DB. To ensure there were no issues with the company’s data transfers, the team migrated the data in several phases using Azure Data Factory. Azure Active Directory (now called Microsoft Entra ID) helped resolve the company’s user profile, authentication, and password management issues. Meanwhile, Power BI and Azure Synapse Analytics rounded out the cloud migration project.

The new, modern micro services cloud environment provided the company with the scalability, agility, and reliability it needed to expand and boost profitability in its tire business. The project also resolved the IT team’s user identity management issues, and the geo-redundant storage has given company leaders peace of mind should a disaster occur.


IT team expected to reduce maintenance time and effort by 40-50%

Now that the cloud migration effort is complete, the company has increased tire sales and margins and is on its way to achieving its business growth targets. Thanks to the new business intelligence and analytics capabilities, store managers have actionable insights to adjust pricing based on customer demand. Meanwhile, the new cloud infrastructure and systems have decreased maintenance requirements for the IT team and automated several manual processes—leading to an expected 40-50% increase in productivity. The company has also reduced IT costs and achieved a 99.99% system uptime.