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Trident Seafoods Fuels Growth Strategy with IBM

October 2, 2006 02:00 PM

Seafood firm chooses System i to streamline acquisitions and drive greater sales and financial transparency

Dan Palumbo
Trident Seafoods

Trident Seafoods Corporation, a major U.S. seafood harvesting and processing company, has experienced significant growth, in part because of the performance and reliability of its IBM servers.

Trident has transformed its core business operations including sales order processing, finance, human resources, payroll, manufacturing, email, and networking ? all of which now run on IBM systems. Trident turned to IBM in the fall of 2004, when it needed to prepare for future business growth without being constrained by painful hardware upgrades.

Founded in 1973, Trident has grown rapidly based on the bounty of Alaska's fishery resources and the demand for quality seafood worldwide. The family-owned firm has completed a series of acquisitions to diversify its products and compete aggressively in the global fishing industry.

Trident vessels catch fish on the Alaska frontier and deliver the catch to Trident shore plants and processing vessels, where the company processes it into consumer ready seafood products. Information technology has improved the accuracy and efficiency of Trident's ability to track inventory, allowing it to trace seafood accurately from the time it comes out of the water to the moment it's purchased. This allows the company to operate its supply chain and quality assurance process with even greater precision.

"I'm a member of the 'I like to sleep at night' club, and reliability is crucial in this business," said Daniel Palumbo, chief information officer at Trident. "Unlike many data centers, I don't have to track system down-time because our IBM systems never go down."

Trident's shore based factories in Alaska now report inventory levels through bar codes that are recorded and captured in Oracle JD Edwards OneWorld applications on IBM System i. IBM System x servers at every factory run the applications for bar coding and scanning, payroll time capture, fish payments, accounting and network management.

In addition, Trident's vessels are connected through a satellite network that allows them to communicate inventory levels electronically instead of relying on printed faxes. Back on shore, sales managers can see all aspects of their world-wide operations to make timely business decisions. They know what they have available to sell at the time it's produced, long before it reaches company warehouses.

Trident Seafoods chose to replace a legacy HP 3000 server with System i, a tightly integrated system that is prepackaged with the hardware, software, security and storage needed to run business applications. No other provider offered Trident the availability, reliability, and performance needed to run its complete suite of JD Edwards applications, while at the same time scaling for continued business growth.

"The IBM systems have been great. Managers here will tell you they're more confident of the inventory, they're more confident of the financials," said Palumbo.

System x also powers email, Internet, Citrix information access products, and network management at Trident's corporate headquarters.

Headquartered in Seattle, Trident Seafoods Corporation employs approximately 4,000 people annually. Trident manages a fleet of more than 30 fishing vessels and operates 20 processing facilities spanning thousands of miles of Pacific coastline from Newport, Oregon to Akutan, Alaska. The company was the first to pioneer crab processing at sea, and today produces a broad range of fresh, canned, smoked and frozen seafood products for institutional food service, family restaurants, club stores and retail customers. Today, Trident leads the Alaska seafood industry in the production of crab, canned sockeye salmon, and frozen Bristol Bay sockeye. Trident also ranks among America's top producers of pollock, cod, halibut, herring, and canned pink salmon.

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