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The Bank of Beirut and the Arab Countries Selects IBM for Major Information on Demand Initiative


IBM (NYSE: IBM) and its business partner, Computer Business Machines, today announced that the Bank of Beirut and the Arab Countries SAL (BBAC), a leading commercial bank in Lebanon, has selected IBM software, hardware and industry expertise to create a business intelligence infrastructure designed to help the bank manage risk and boost profitability.

This engagement represents IBM’s first major Information on Demand project in Lebanon. Launched in February, 2006, IBM’s cross-company Information on Demand initiative is helping global organizations use information as a competitive and strategic business asset. IBM’s strategy is to provide customers with the data they need -- when they need it -- to help them quickly respond to changing market demands, rapidly identify new business opportunities, and improve business results.

The Information on Demand solution to be used by BBAC will be comprised of technology and services from IBM and its business partner, Pexim. Under the project, IBM will create a data warehouse that will allow the bank to comply with Basel II guidelines, as well as the regulatory requirements of Banque du Liban, Lebanon’s Central Bank.

Once the solution is implemented, BBAC will become one of the first banks in the Middle East to achieve compliance with Basel II. In doing so, the bank expects to have one of the best risk management systems in the region, which will aid its efforts to assess the risks and opportunities associated with making the loans required for reconstruction work underway today in Beirut.

“Businesses today face remarkable challenges in managing large amounts of data and information. IBM’s Information on Demand solutions help organizations use their information to better serve their customers and reduce costs,” said Pierre Abijaoude, CEO, Computer Business Machines. “The solution we are providing to BBAC will help move their business forward by increasing the bank’s efficiency and profitability while reducing risk.”

“IBM’s Information on Demand solution will give BBAC’s employees access to the information they need to make better business decisions and provide higher value services to their customers,” said Bashar Kilani, software group manager, IBM Middle East, Egypt and Pakistan.

At the core of the solution BBAC has chosen is the IBM Banking Data Warehouse industry model, which will provide a template for the bank’s data warehouse. The model is currently used by more than 200 financial institutions around the world. The Banking Data Warehouse also serves as the foundation for Pexim’s Tezauri product, an integrated business intelligence solution BBAC will employ for enterprise risk management, profitability analysis, legal and regulatory compliance, customer relationship management, and Basel II compliance.

BBAC will use the IBM Information Server to extract data from its core banking systems for use by its data warehouse. The IBM Information Server is a new, industry-first software platform that helps businesses derive more value from the complex, heterogeneous information spread across their systems. It will be used in conjunction with IBM’s DB2 version 9 data server.

The bank’s new business intelligence system will run on IBM Systems, including a high-end IBM System p server, an IBM System x server, and an IBM System Storage DS4300.

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