Top clothing retailer Gap will use International Business Machines (IBM) to streamline its information technology systems as part of a new deal worth about US$1.1bn.

Gap said in a notice to regulators that IBM would operate part of its information technology structure in a drive to boost efficiency.

The non-exclusive deal will also see IBM taking on 400 Gap employees.

Gap expects the agreement to enhance the capabilities and level of service of its technology infrastructure, while reducing the costs associated with these functions over time.

IBM will provide services supporting Gap's mainframe, server, network and data centre, and store operations, as well as providing help desk, user support, and disaster recovery services.
The two parties also have the option of incorporating additional services into the agreement over time.

The deal has an initial term of ten years, with a renewal option for up to three additional years.