Sello Rojo Saves Up To 80% in Licensing and Maintenance Costs with SUSE


  • Reduced licensing and maintenance costs by up to 80%.
  • Increased operating system update speed by 30%.
  • Delivered zero interruptions in nonplanned maintenance windows.
  • Increased information reliability.


Watch our success story

Loved by generations, Sello Rojo is a 100% Mexican company dedicated to the pro­duction and marketing of milk, its deriva­tives and other foods. Running two opera­tional plants and 50 distribution centers, the company employs over 4,000 people and is committed to developing high qual­ity products with a focus on quality service and customer satisfaction.


With the intention of growing the busi­ness, maximizing its corporate man­agement processes and optimizing investments in technology, Sello Rojo migrated from SAP ECC 6 (running on a proprietary operating system) to SAP S/4HANA (running on SUSE Linux En­terprise Server for SAP Applications). Shortly thereafter, they recorded sav­ings in licensing and maintenance costs while registering increases in ef­ficiency and security throughout their IT environment.


In 2017, Sello Rojo identified opportunities to improve business operations by stream­lining processes and optimizing IT invest­ments. Historically, they had been manag­ing their finances with SAP ECC 6, running on a proprietary operating system with on-premises, Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) Proliant servers. Upon review, Sello Rojo discovered that continuing to maintain its SAP ECC 6 environment would require re­petitive, high cost patching investments and sizable amounts of downtime when applying updates. Therefore, they decided to migrate their environment to run on SAP S/4HANA as a more reliable, cost-effective alternative.

In order to migrate functions from SAP ECC 6 to SAP S/4HANA, Sello Rojo would have to invest in new hardware. They would also need to update their proprietary operat­ing system on the new servers to ensure the equipment functioned at optimal effi­ciency.

However, updating the proprietary oper­ating system would require high licensing fees and the need to establish new bud­gets every time the manufacturer issued software updates.

To help navigate these challenges, Sello Rojo partnered with CITEI, a technology consultancy firm based out of Mexico, and HPE to find a solution.

“With CITEI and HPE, project partners for SAP S4/HANA, we learned a Linux-based sys­tem would be much more efficient,” says Verónica Ruiz, head of senior applications for Sello Rojo. “It was then they told us that SUSE has a Linux operating system certified by SAP.”

“SUSE’s partnership with CITEI and HPE helped us understand not only the benefits that SUSE Linux Enterprise Sever for SAP Applications could offer us, but also that it would be much easier to use.”


Ruiz reflects that initially the idea of replac­ing their proven proprietary operating sys­tem scared Sello Rojo’s IT team. This would be their first foray into using a Linux sys­tem. “SUSE’s partnership with CITEI and HPE helped us understand not only the benefits that SUSE Linux Enterprise Server (SLES) for SAP Applications could offer us, but also that it would be much easier to use,” says Ruiz.

In the end, Ruiz’s team decided to move for­ward because the solutions would be easy to implement and because SUSE Linux En­terprise (SLE) Live Patching would help them save significant amounts of time when ap­plying updates.

“All parties – HPE, CITEI, SUSE and Sello Rojo – operated in a very coordinated way. We all worked as a single team. We were all one single project,” says Ruiz. “In just two months they replaced our legacy systems with three Sinergy servers and six VMware virtual servers, all running SAP S/4HANA on SLES for SAP Applications.”

The cultural change happened quite smoothly as SUSE provided training for SLES for SAP Applications and SLE Live Patching. “The knowledge hand-over happened nat­urally as we configured and implemented everything together,” she says.


By replacing the proprietary operating sys­tem with SLES for SAP Applications, Sello Rojo was able to save up to 80% in software licensing and maintenance costs. “There was already a significant cost reduction due to the reduction of required mainte­nance, but we are saving even more by no longer needing to pay user license fees,” says Ruiz.

But the benefits go beyond financial sav­ings. According to Ruiz, SLES for SAP Appli­cations is more secure and efficient than their previous operating system. She ex­plains, “Updates also bring more efficacy– we don’t have as many patches as we had before, and SLE Live Patching makes issuing patches much easier.”

From a business standpoint, SLES for SAP Applications allows Sello Rojo to take full advantage of the data analytics capabili­ties offered by SAP S/4HANA. “And on the other hand, it prepares us for the big data projects in Sello Rojo’s pipeline for expand­ing into new retailers and new cities,” re­veals Ruiz.

Additionally, Ruiz’s team is beginning to ex­plore how SUSE can support other projects, such as working with Java development and even a desktop migration.