Big Blue in Big Outsourcing Bid

Outsourcing deals worth more than $1 billion are icing on the cake after IBM
officials announced the completion of acquisitions
Wednesday that solidifies its push in the European transportation and
logistics industry.

The Armonk, N.Y., IT giant acquired Maersk Data, the consulting arm of
Danish container shipping company A.P. Moller – Maersk. IBM also acquired
another subsidiary of the Denmark-based company, DMdata, an IT services
company jointly owned by Moller-Maersk and Danske Bank, who merged their IT
departments seven years ago.

The two outsourcing contracts also involve Moller-Maersk and Danske Bank
and are part of IBM’s push to deliver what they call Business Performance
Transformation Services (BPTS) to not only the transportation and logistics
industries, but the logistics arms of companies in a variety of other
industries, as well.

“It was a way for us to significantly increase our business within the
transportation industry, and it was a way for us also to
increase our business specifically in Europe,” said Dwayne Ingram, vice
president of IBM’s travel and transportation group. “You not only think
about the transportation industry, but the transportation business within
other industries — like the manufacturing industry — so this is a much
broader play than just the travel industry.”

Ingram said IBM was in the right place to make the acquisitions;
Moller-Maersk’s shipping business was growing fast and wanted to shed some
subsidiaries outside its core business. Ingram and IBM officials would not divulge the
details surrounding the acquisitions.

While Maersk Data’s consulting practice finds its strength in the
transportation and logistics industry, IBM’s new purchase also caters to the
public sector, health care, and food and agricultural industries in 111
countries.

DMdata, with its ties to Danske Bank, caters to IT services in
the banking industry, but has contracts in the transportation, financial
services, retail and public-sector industries. It will be used as the
cornerstone to launch an On-Demand Delivery Center to serve clients in
Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

BPTS is the company’s vision
for combining industry-specific knowledge with IT services to solve business
operation problems through Web services; a $500 billion market opportunity,
according to Sam Palmisano, IBM chairman and CEO, over and above the $1.2 trillion
market in traditional IT spending.

“BPTS has to be viewed in terms of business outcomes realized by any
individual client,” said Lia Papa, an IBM spokesperson, in an e-mail
statement. “It starts with new business designs; getting to that new model
requires design coupled with infrastructure, global scale, technical
prowess and a commitment to stand accountable for results.”

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