LONDON -- Domino's Pizza UK is overhauling its IT infrastructure this year.

According to Computing, the UK arm of the American pizza chain has invested heavily to make infrastructure stronger and more in line with business strategy.

In 2001, Domino's UK upgraded hardware systems to boost reliability and scalability. This year it's replacing software.

Domino's has 238 UK stores, but it wants 500 outlets in four years and 1,000 by 2011. Information systems director Ian Foxley said the company could not achieve that growth with its previous IT system.

The company runs Windows NT4 with one or two Windows 2000 servers, which were tested last year. It plans to standardize its entire system with Windows 2000 by October.

Foxley was unsure whether to use Microsoft's Active Directory or choose a Novell alternative, eDirectory. In the end, he chose the Microsoft package in hopes it will speed training because of user familiarity.

Domino's is working with consultancy Fernhart New Media to design a centralized SQL Server database it plans to stock with more than 20 million customer records. The data will be used to analyze buying patterns and target new services.

Domino's also wants to boost its automated interactive ordering (AIO) activity. Six percent of its orders are made via the Web or digital TV. It has automated the request and tracking process of 15 percent of these orders, and wants to have half of all non-conventional orders using AIO by this June.

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