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FTD Turns To HP For Almost 30,000 PC

FTD Florist Services will announce today that it has turnedover to Hewlett Packard a contract to provide PC hardware to the more than 20,000 FTD florists participating in its floral business system, Mercury Wings.

The deal comes less than a year after FTD announced a similar PC arrangement with Dell ( http://www.informationweek.com/story/IWK19981030S0002 ). "We launched our project with Dell, and Dell continues to be a partner on the server systems," says an FTD spokeswoman. "We've changed that relationship to HP because of the value and the quality that HP offers." She says HP won the deal because of its reputation for reliability and because the company was impressed with the customer service it has received.

The Mercury Wings project is being developed by FTD so it's 20,000-plus franchised florists have a standardized system for ordering flowers, tracking inventory, credit-card authorization, and billing using customized, Window-based software. Under the deal, HP will provide FTD with approximately 26,000 HP Vectra Corporate PCs, plus printers and monitors, for its franchisees. HP will also provide FTD with 6,000 HP ProCurve eight-port hubs. A dollar amount for the deal isn't being disclosed.

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