UK-based international electrical retailer Currys has selected Microsoft and Accenture, along with their joint venture (JV) Avanade, to provide its cloud computing infrastructure.

The three companies will help Currys to modernize and simplify its technology estate, eventually enabling the retailer to adopt Microsoft's artificial intelligence (AI) technologies.

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As part of the modernization and simplification process, nine of Currys' existing data centers, which house more than 2,000 servers and 200 applications, will be migrated to Azure. DCD has contacted the company for more information about its data centers.

The retailer also hopes that the move will contribute to its plan to have net zero emissions by 2040.

Ralph Haupter, president, EMEA at Microsoft, said: “By deploying the latest cloud and AI technologies, Currys can enhance the shopping experience for millions of customers, both in-store and online, whilst ensuring its 25,000 employees have the insights at their fingertips to unlock value across the entire business.”

Currys intends to use Azure OpenAI Service, and hopes to improve customer experience through personalized product information and tailored suggestions as well as improving the post-sales experience and warranty services.

Alex Baldock, group CEO of Currys, said: “AI is the biggest technological leap of our lifetime. Currys exists to help everyone enjoy amazing technology, so as well as bringing the benefits of AI to millions of customers, we’ll do the same to our own business. We couldn’t have better partners for this, and together we aim to put Currys at the forefront of digital transformation in retail.”

Julie Sweet, chair and CEO of Accenture, added: “Building a strong digital core will enable Currys to take its customer service and employee experience to the next level, and more quickly harness the potential of AI and generative AI to drive its ongoing reinvention. Together with Microsoft, we are helping Currys raise the bar in the retail industry, reach new frontiers of performance and efficiency, and create new value and growth.”

In Currys' 2022/2023 Annual Report, the company listed its IT and Central strategy to reduce costs as being to "simplify processes, remove duplication and low value add, [and] move IT to the cloud." The company said it spent £56 million ($70.4m) over the two years ending in April 2023 on IT expenses.

Currys plc operates online and in 727 stores across six countries.