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Oil Industry Robotics Firm SMD Overhauls Systems

16 January 2012

Underwater robotic vehicle firm Soil Machine Dynamics (SMD) is deploying a new ERP system to improve project management in the oil, gas and telecoms markets it serves.

With the new IFS Applications ERP system SMD will integrate processes across a number of locations, to deliver improved operational efficiency and better project management, it said. The contract is the single largest IT project in SMD's history, although the value has not been disclosed.

Founded in 1971, SMD provides subsea remotely operated vehicle systems for undersea trenching and cable burial for telecoms systems. The firm's systems are also used for subsea mining, marine renewable energy and nuclear decommissioning.

Richard Lowery, finance director at SMD, said: "SMD currently has a number of disparate IT systems used for managing different aspects of the business.

"As the business has grown significantly over the past few years we realised the need for an integrated end-to-end IT solution, that would provide a platform to support growth and improve efficiency across the entire company."

IFS Applications 7.5 will be used to handle the design, engineering and manufacturing of SMD's systems, and the management of the projects for a wide range of customers.

As part of the contract SMD will also receive product lifecycle management (PLM) functionality via IFS Applications, ensuring that the company can keep track of each system, from its initial design to its assembly and use in the field.

It was recently announced that global mining firm Nyrstar was implementing SAP ERP software to replace ten legacy systems. Nyrstar, the world's largest producer of zinc, among other materials, operates smelters and mines on five continents.