Australian Pharmaceutical Industries (API), an Australian beauty and health retail company, has formed a partnership with Indian IT services company Tata Consultancy Services (TCS).

Under the alliance, TCS will deliver SAP technology to unify and enhance mission-critical IT systems across API’s retail and wholesale operations.

The move is a part of API’s plan to upgrade its important IT systems after a series of mergers and acquisitions and aggressive business growth.

TCS Australia and New Zealand CEO Deborah Hadwen said forming an alliance with API marks a significant milestone for the company as it seeks expansion into retail segment.

"By adopting the combination of TCS services and SAP technology to enhance its IT operations, API will have a state-of-the art technology infrastructure that will deliver a competitive edge in the fast-paced retail marketplace," added Hadwen.

Through an SAP ERP platform, TCS will consolidate API’s legacy systems, improving mission-critical business operations such as merchandising, sales and customer service, logistics and finance.

The health and beauty retailer expects that the developments would enhance the company’s customer service capabilities, logistics and finance processes, and operational efficiencies.

API chief executive officer Stephen Roche noted: "We are confident that partnering with TCS will achieve our key objectives of enhanced customer capabilities and realizing the associated efficiencies to position API competitively for the future."

API has a relationship with more than 4000 independent pharmacies, and owns and operates the Priceline retail store brand.