RealTime IT News

HP Buys Into Irish Business Continuity

HP Ireland isn't counting on luck to help it become the top IT services provider in Ireland.

The subsidiary took steps to fortify its position as a leading IT provider overseas when it acquired Schlumberger Business Continuity Services in a multi-million-euro deal, the latest in a string of IT services buys overseas.

Specific figures for the deal were not disclosed, but HP Ireland will add Schlumberger BCS' 25 employees to its technology solutions group. Schlumberger BCS is a leading provider of business recovery services in Ireland, with sites in Dublin, Cork and Belfast.

Belinda Wilson, executive director of HP Business Continuity & Availability (BC&A) Services, said the buy will give HP Ireland a bigger presence in services that help make sure enterprises stay up and running in the event of a natural or man-made disaster. Business continuity services cover anything from hack attacks to the recent tsunamis.

The purchase will allow HP Ireland to provide regional facilities for its customers' staff to do critical work, as well as IT resources containing backed-up information. The goal is to ensure customer data can be quickly and easily accessed, as well as backed up.

Wilson said governance mandates, such as Basel II and Sarbanes-Oxley, that require data to be stored for specific lengths of time make business continuity management an increasing priority for Irish businesses looking to mitigate legal risks and liability.

Ireland is a region where HP is seeing a lot of growth and customer demand, she added.

Next to the skyrocketing demand in the United States and overseas, Wilson said technology used in HP's BC&A services has changed the most in the last three to four years. She said new technologies enable "transparent continuity," and noted there have been advances in data replication and fail-over.

Meanwhile, HP, which competes fiercely for service contracts with fellow giant IBM, is well known as one of the largest providers of managed services in high-tech.

That distinction extends overseas. IDC recently described HP as a market leader following a bid to acquire German IT services provider for $430 million.

Last year, HP targeted the U.K., scooped up business availability service provider Synstar and software management and licensing firm FH Computer Services.