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Wing Lung Bank Selects IBM to Speed Growth Into China

Joint Software Agreement to Improve Product Development, Delivery and Response to Customer Demands

HONG KONG - 21 Feb 2006: IBM China/Hong Kong Limited and Wing Lung Bank, ("the Bank") one of the oldest local Chinese banks in Hong Kong, today announced a joint software development initiative at IBM's Shenzhen delivery facility to transform the bank's products, services and customer channels, as well as support its expansion into mainland China.

The three-year agreement, worth US$1.8 million, will see IBM Application Services provide application development and management services to the Bank through a new joint facility located at IBM's Shenzhen Global Delivery Center, one of three such IBM centers in China.

The co-development team at the facility will streamline and modernize the processes and tools the Bank uses to create its software applications. IBM's accelerated solution delivery approach will speed the Bank's product development process and time to market for new products and service innovation, allowing the Bank to quickly address changing customer needs and increase its competitive advantage.

The agreement between IBM and Wing Lung Bank follows the recent opening of the Bank's Shenzhen Nanshan sub-branch in November 2005. The Bank is committed to investing in China and has been quick to capitalize on the Closer Economic Partnership Arrangement (CEPA), a free trade agreement that fosters economic links between mainland China and Hong Kong. Wing Lung Bank was the first Hong Kong-based bank to establish a branch in mainland China under CEPA.

"Establishing an offshore development center in Shenzhen to handle some of the work being done in Hong Kong, requires extensive planning and strong knowledge of IT, business processes and human resources," said Dr. Philip Wu, Executive Director and Chief Executive, Wing Lung Bank. "We're looking to capitalize on IBM's expertise in these areas, as well as their vast experience in doing business in China."

Wing Lung Bank chose IBM due to its commitment to teamwork and service superiority, emphasis on customer relations and satisfaction, and ability to offer insight into solving customer problems. "We were also impressed by IBM's core values of dedication to client success, staff development, and developing trust and personal responsibility in its relationships," said Dr. Wu.

A recent study conducted by IBM's strategic research unit, The Institute for Business Value, entitled "Banking 2015: Defining the Future of Banking"* identified a shift towards a more customer-centric approach in banking that requires banks to adapt their business models and supporting technology to focus on delivering value to customers through tools, information and options.

IBM's Applications Services addresses every type of application, from legacy mainframe systems to Web-based custom applications, as well as off-the-shelf solutions from different vendors. The company's research reveals that the accelerated solution delivery approach can reduce product development cycles by as much as 67 percent, and development costs by as much as 30 percent for banking clients, allowing banks to become more customer-focused organizations and more aware of likely returns from application transformation initiatives.

"To maintain and grow shareholder value, banks must control costs by integrating core business applications, reduce risk with tighter information security, and diversify and grow with customer-focused initiatives. The success of these initiatives depends on the alignment of business and technology strategies," said Dominic Tong, General Manger, IBM China/Hong Kong Limited. "The ability to integrate business insight and technology to create business value positions IBM as the ideal partner to help local enterprises innovate and grow as part of China," Tong added.

"CEPA opens the window of opportunity for Hong Kong-based banks to grow their presence in the China market. We are excited to have IBM helping us build the business infrastructure we need for rapid growth in China, and we look forward to a closer working relationship in the future," concluded Dr. Wu.

IBM's three Global Delivery Centers in China are certified at Capability Maturity Model Integration (CMMI) level 5, the highest certification level for process maturity and quality and improvement in software development.

*Note to editor: The Study "Banking 2015: Defining the Future of Banking" can be downloaded at http://www.ibm.com/services/us/bcs/html/bcs_banking.html.

Contact(s) information

Michael Corrado
IBM Media Relations
914-642-3009
mcorrado@us.ibm.com

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