IBM Inks U.K. Networking Deal

Adding another financial services giant to its customer list, IBM said it has won a seven-year IT outsourcing contract from banking
firm Lloyds TSB worth nearly $971 million.

Unlike the fickle PC business that IBM is maneuvering
to exit, today’s deal requires a high degree of expertise and locks in
revenues over several years.

The London-based banking company’s new infrastructure will be rolled out
over the next 20 months and feature a single network for voice, data and
video with direct links to mobile and call center services.

The implementation includes nearly 70,000 Voice over IP
telephones, making it one of the largest ever in Europe, IBM
said.

“IBM has a lot of experience with VoIP installations for customers around
the world and also for IBM,” Kimberly Assalone, a spokeswoman for IBM, told
internetnews.com.

She cited a recent contract from Dow Chemical to deploy an IP network that
will handle voice, data, fax and call center operations as another example of
the company’s foray into converged networks.

Other companies participating in Lloyds’ upgrade include Vanco, a global
virtual network operator, and Vtesse Networks, a gigabit optical networking
provider.

Lloyds was an existing IBM customer for desktop services and other projects,
Assalone said. It joins other financial services customers, including America
Express, Deutsche Bank, Morgan Stanley and Equifax on the IBM roster.

The IBM-Lloyds project is the second major corporate VoIP announcement in as
many weeks. BT recently said it would VoIP-enable
10,000 call center agents across Europe.

Armonk, N.Y.-based IBM competes with EDS and HP for large-scale, long-term IT projects.

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