Business challenge

How could Jumbo Supermarkten quickly and effectively launch a new chain of stores in Belgium?


To accelerate its expansion into this new market, Jumbo worked with IBM Services to deploy SAP S/4HANA, providing an integrated, future-proof solution that supports the company’s operations.



deployment of a fully operational solution from start to finish.


a blueprint for future growth in the Netherlands.


that success with minimum customization is possible.

Business challenge story

Expanding to new countries

When Jumbo decided to enter the Belgian market, the company did not have an existing physical presence in the country or any systems that could support the future Belgian stores.

In its Netherlands supermarkets, Jumbo used a bespoke ERP system that it acquired from supermarket chains Super de Boer and Edah. Having used the system for many years, Jumbo found that it was becoming more difficult to maintain and develop and began looking for an alternative. 

Jumbo knew that creating a complete and fully-fledged ERP system within 14 months from start to finish, including associated processes that support the entire store operation, would be complex. The fact that any new ERP system also needed to be suitable to replace the existing Dutch Jumbo IT infrastructure added to the challenge. To realize this program, Jumbo launched a cross-functional effort within its existing business, while also establishing a new organization in Belgium.

Supported by IBM, Jumbo has tried to use the features that are already available in SAP S/4HANA as much as possible. This has been one of the successes of the project, that and the company’s can-do mentality to look for solutions together.

Rob Vos, Client Partner, IBM Netherlands

Transformation story

Taking a fresh approach

To accelerate growth in Belgium, Jumbo chose to implement SAP S/4HANA to support its new stores. The company also recognized that taking this step would make transforming its Dutch business much easier. This way, the SAP S/4HANA operation in Belgium would act as a blueprint for the future introduction of SAP S/4HANA in the Netherlands.

In contrast to the approach Jumbo took in its Dutch stores, where a comprehensive system was in place and where many customizations were made, the company decided to start from scratch with a so-called “greenfield” strategy in Belgium. 

To begin with, the company decided to stay as close as possible to SAP’s recommended setup using the SAP Model Company for Core Retail and the SAP Finance best-practice standards for Belgium. This was so that Jumbo could make maximum use of the tools and best practices that SAP S/4HANA incudes out-of-the-box.

Rob Vos, the IBM Client Partner working on the project with Jumbo, comments, “Supported by IBM, Jumbo has tried to use the features that are already available in SAP S/4HANA as much as possible. This has been one of the successes of the project, that and the company’s can-do mentality to look for solutions together.”

To ensure a quick implementation, an agile approach was chosen. Results were delivered in three-week sprints to achieve a minimum viable product. This way, extensions and improvements could easily be added and it would be easy to expand the system with new functionality and include additional requirements. Setting up a separate organization to achieve the desired results was also important for the success of the project. 

Results story

Accelerating efficiency

A major advantage of SAP S/4HANA is that it uses an in-memory platform with which large amounts of data can be processed very quickly. Because of this, Jumbo has constant access to up-to-date data and insights on, among other things, shop inventory, sales and other operating results.

The new landscape of Jumbo Belgium now partly runs in an IBM Power® Systems E950 and IBM PowerVM® cloud environment running on SUSE Linux Enterprise Server for SAP Applications (external link) and IBM FlashSystem® 5030. With this configuration the required capacity can be scaled up quickly, making bottlenecks in IT infrastructure a thing of the past.

By running SAP S/4HANA in a private cloud, IBM was able to focus on developing and setting up the SAP software. All the required environments were available on the cloud. This made it easy to test, develop and, where necessary, scale up. For example, more test environments could be run side by side, which not only has an advantage in terms of testing and rolling out the software, but also provides a cost advantage.

Jumbo Supermarkten

Jumbo Supermarkten is a Dutch family business from a rich entrepreneurial heritage. The company currently has over 680 supermarkets, seven food markets and a successful online ordering and delivery service via Recently, Jumbo also launched Jumbo City, a convenience store concept that combines elements of the regular Jumbo stores, food markets and the restaurant chain La Place. By always putting the customer first, Jumbo is one of the most popular supermarket chains and has been voted “Best Supermarket in the Netherlands” sixteen times by GfK. 

Take the next step

SAP S/4HANA is a suite of ERP business applications that prompts the enterprise IT shift from a simple transactional system toward giving end users active decision support in real time. Numerous organizations across the globe are seriously considering how and when their organization should adopt SAP S/4HANA. Moving to SAP S/4HANA, however, can be a massive undertaking. Selecting IBM as your transformation partner allows you to reap the full benefits of SAP S/4HANA. IBM experts can help you build a business case and a dedicated roadmap, and help you understand the impact of transformation. IBM is the leading partner for complex SAP transformations around the globe, able to offer IBM SAP S/4HANA experts with strong industry and business IT expertise.

To learn more about IBM Services please contact your IBM representative or IBM Business Partner, or visit the following website: /services/sap/s4hana

To learn more about IBM Power Systems please contact your IBM representative or IBM Business Partner, or visit the following website: /it-infrastructure/power/sap-hana