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Danish brewery company Carlsberg has rolled out Microsoft’s Office 365 cloud collaboration tools to connect 20,000 of its 40,000 employees, as the business expands internationally.

Danish brewery company Carlsberg has rolled out Microsoft’s Office 365 cloud collaboration tools to connect 20,000 of its 40,000 employees, as the business expands internationally.

Since 2000, the 160-year old company has grown from operating in six markets to becoming the fourth-largest beer brewer in the world, responsible for 500 different brands.

As part of its expansion plans, known internally as GloCal, Carlsberg has deployed a range tools to support collaboration and enable central management of staff around the world.

This includes using Microsoft Exchange Online for email and calendaring, Lync Online for web-conferencing and instant messaging, and Yammer Enterprise, deployed as a social networking platform for staff.

The company is also using Office 365 to support its Carlsberg Supply Chain (CSC) operations, with collaboration tools aiding management of procurement, production and logistics.

“Beer is heavy, so we don’t want to transport it very long distances. And breweries are capital intensive, so we don’t want to build too many,” said Etienne Dock, vice president of IT architecture and sourcing at Carlsberg.  

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“CSC gets huge business value from using Office 365 as a global collaboration tool to interact with our global markets and exchange the information we need to fine-tune the balance between these variables to optimise our operations and save money.”

The company said that the cloud software is also making it easier for Carlsberg’s workforce interact with each other and with customers via mobile devices, helping to improve its service.

“No matter what device or distance, the cloud is breaking down traditional barriers so we’re better able to focus on brewing the best beer in the world,” added Dock.

Carlsberg is also in the midst of a project to consolidate SAP systems across its European operations onto one single platform, selecting Accenture last year to lead the project, expected to be finished in 2015.