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IBM Announces BladeCenter Solutions for Financial and Banking Industries


IBM Systems Solutions for Branch Banking to Simplify Branch Operations; New IBM Virtualized Hosted Client Infrastructure Offering for BladeCenter

ARMONK, NY -- Nov 14, 2005 -- IBM today announced new solutions to allow financial services and banking customers to centralize operations and reduce overhead costs. The new IBM Systems Solutions for Branch Banking leverages IBM’s growing ecosystem of partners, and also adds another option to the IBM Virtualized Hosted Client Infrastructure solution portfolio.

Systems Solutions for Branch Banking is designed to serve as a secure and stable platform for branch growth, as banks continue to evolve and redevelop their traditional network of branch sites, seeking to transform them into outlets for personalized selling and highly-focused service.

“IBM brings significant value to the table -- expertise from other engagements and a deep understanding for our support needs,” said Luis Francisco Rivas Dueńas, Chief Information Officer of Banco de la República, the Central Bank of Columbia. “We can capitalize on IBM’s expertise to further collapse multiple tiers of our computing operations into a more efficient, less complex infrastructure. This solution includes tailored features such extra security and networking applications that meet our specific needs as a financial institution.”

Designed specifically for the banking industry, the new Systems Solutions for Branch Banking offers banking customers a pre-configured, pre-tested, scalable and easy to maintain platform that can be used to consolidate branch infrastructure. The new banking solutions -- built on powerful Intel Xeon-based IBM BladeCenter and xSeries platforms -- include software, networking and security features so that administrators can monitor operations and centrally deploy software to branch locations.

Systems Solutions for Branch Banking provides functions and services that can be used with in-branch applications, such as wireless networking, local storage backup and restore, and management of automated teller machines (ATMs).

“The trend in the financial services and banking markets is towards flexible and resilient infrastructures to ease the manageability of a company’s overall operations and free more IT dollars for use developing client-facing products and services,” said Mark Greene, general manager, IBM Global Banking Industry. “With today’s announcement of IBM’s Systems Solutions for Branch Banking, IBM is providing financial customers with solutions to realize a competitive advantage in this fast-paced market.”

Systems Solutions for Branch Banking will help retail banks ensure the branch channel remains a key contributor of business growth in the future even with the proliferation of remote channels such as internet and telephone banking. The new banking solutions will allow retail banking networks to expand while maintaining a high quality of service for their customers. Retail banks will be able to quickly access, maintain, and analyze customer data in branch offices without having to retrieve data across the network. The offering also includes IBM Director software for central office management of the infrastructure and software deployment.

Systems Solutions for Branch Banking includes a wide variety of solution options:

* Using VMware virtual infrastructure, the computing platform can support several base operating systems, including versions of Windows and Linux, on a single blade server.
* Provisioning systems such as Altiris Deployment Solution.
* Datacom Systems has recently made available an IBM BladeCenter version of their video surveillance system.

New IBM Virtualized Hosted Client Infrastructure solution with VMware and ClearCube
IBM is also unveiling the next solution in its Virtualized Hosted Client Infrastructure portfolio with BladeCenter, VMware and ClearCube. This new offering is ideal for bank branches and credit institutions and is part of IBM’s new banking solution.

This new IBM hosted client solution is based on VMware virtual infrastructure software to host multiple users of fully functional desktop environments on a single blade within IBM BladeCenter and leverages ClearCube client access technologies, which increases efficiencies such as utilization of computing resources and quicker deployment of new users.

Users connect to their desktop environments using ClearCube Grid Center software which dynamically allocates them to the appropriate computing resource. IT administrators can manage the blades through ClearCube Control Center, which provides health status and automated alerts through graphically configured agents.

IBM introduced its first Virtualized Hosted Client Infrastructure offering last month; a pre-integrated hosted client solution based on VMware virtual infrastructure software and leveraging Citrix client access technologies.

IBM Global Services support
IBM Systems Solutions for Branch Banking and IBM Virtualized Hosted Client Infrastructure will be delivered by IBM Global Services (IGS) and select IBM Business Partners. IGS is currently enrolling customers for pilot implementations.

IBM Global Services has skills and capabilities to help clients take advantage of virtualization and hosted client architectures to create a more secure and cost effective client infrastructure. Leveraging vast experience in delivering hosted client solutions, IGS professionals can help clients evaluate existing applications, images, user profiles and networks to plan, design, implement and manage their Virtualized Hosted Client Infrastructure. IBM can provide Systems Solutions for Branch Banking Proof of Concept services, including hardware, software, and services to plan, design and install a limited branch proof of concept.

About IBM
IBM is the world’s largest information technology company, with 80 years of leadership in helping businesses innovate. Drawing on resources from across IBM and key IBM Business Partners, IBM offers a wide range of services, solutions and technologies that enable customers, large and small, to take full advantage of the new era of e-business. For more information about IBM, visit


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