Software company SAP and personal computer maker Dell are to cooperate in retail hardware and software, they said late on Tuesday.
The alliance, which brings together the world's biggest business software maker and the number two PC maker, promises to help retailers run their business more cheaply and efficiently.
SAP software will be installed on Dell point-of-sale systems and servers, allowing retailers to better track customer behavior and buying trends as well as processing transactions faster, the two companies said.
"The combination of two leaders within this industry can alleviate many of the challenges our joint customers wrestle with daily," Jem Mattecheck, head of SAP America's retail division, said in a statement.
Terry Klein, vice president of Dell's Advanced Systems Group, said retailers would now no longer be forced to make separate hardware and software decisions.
Retail is one of SAP's strongest specialisms and the company also has a retail point-of-sale partnership with IBM, the world's largest technology services company.
SAP's retail customers include British home improvements chain Homebase and German food store chain Rewe.