IBM and SAP have collaborated to roll out a logistics and transportation industry-specific platform which will help organisations innovate and improve their customer service using cloud computing, analytics and mobile.

The offering is an opportunity for the vendors to corner the growing logistics and transportation IT market, as many freight companies are looking to update legacy IT systems to standardise their business processes so they can better understand and serve their customers.

"Like many industries today, transportation companies are responding to the imperative to treat their customers as markets of one. The experience a company creates for its customers has become a de facto element in their ability to compete," said Raimon Christiani, global Travel and Transportation industry lead, IBM Global Business Services.

"Using best practices in analytics and other core competencies from IBM together with SAP software, our transportation clients will be better positioned to provide their customers with experiences that form the basis of sustained relationships."

The platform will combine SAP software with IBM's implementation and configuration services. SAP transportation Management, SAP Event Management and SAP Customer Relationship Management and SAP Billing and Revenue Innovation Management Solutions will be integrated into the new offering.

The vendors will offer a step-by-step rollout according to individual organisation's needs and, using IBM's best practice template, with lower implementation costs.

Till Dengel, vice president of Industry Business Unit Travel & Transportation at SAP said: "In moving global freight today, the associated information is as important as the physical flow of the goods. Many freight companies are thus updating their legacy IT environments and embarking on large-scale transformational projects.

"By expanding their partnership, SAP and IBM together offer deep expertise in this market and this helps ensure that our customers can successfully transform their business with state-of-the-art IT."

Hoping to stay ahead of the pack of providers of generic cloud services, IBM also announced this week that it has launched a portfolio of cloud packages, called IBM Cloud Business Solutions, designed to run specific business processes such as asset management and customer care.