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IBM to Deploy Unified Communications Solutions for IDEA Cellular

IDEA to Realize Significant Benefits Through Real-Time Collaboration in First-of-Its-Kind Implementation of Cisco Unified MeetingPlace in India

BANGALORE, INDIA - 26 Nov 2007: IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced the implementation of first-of-its-kind unified communications and collaboration solution for IDEA Cellular, a leading cellular operator and an Aditya Birla Group Company. This is in addition to the 10-year strategic outsourcing contract announced by IDEA and IBM earlier this year.

The fully IP-based solution offers rich media conferencing and integrated messaging for productive and effective communication within IDEA Cellular. The implementation of Cisco Unified MeetingPlace by IBM Global Technology Services will help enable IDEA Cellular improve the way employees communicate and collaborate across the enterprise, resulting in significant productivity boost and enhancing business growth. Supporting open standards, the solution is customized to effectively address IDEA's growth plans and ensure smooth roll-out across the company's twenty-four offices within India.

Speaking on this implementation, Sanjeev Aga, Managing Director, IDEA Cellular Ltd, said, "India is one of the fastest-growing economies. Today, a mobile connection is not a luxury but a necessity to achieve progress. A significantly large number of people are using mobiles and the number is only increasing. To address an ever-increasing customer base it is important for cellular operators to provide the latest infrastructure and technology to support their customers. Hence, they also need to equip themselves with the latest systems to communicate internally and collaborate better. It is our endeavor to step up efforts towards ensuring real-time collaboration with the help of Cisco and IBM."

The system deployed by IBM offers users IP telephony with touch screen phones integrated with rich media (Voice, Video and Web) conferencing facilities, enabling IDEA Cellular to set up and conduct remote meetings with a face-to-face quality and to speed decision-making. Cisco Unified MeetingPlace supports multiple types of devices to accommodate distributed operations along with integrating collaboration tools with the corporate user management system, directory, e-mail and calendaring. The solution also supports a range of applications and user roles that were implemented by IBM to promote highly collaborative meetings, training sessions, and presentations.

IBM offers design and deployment services that draw from its extensive converged communications experience, industry-leading tools and key strategic alliances. According to Nipun Mehrotra, Director, Global Technology Services, IBM India/South Asia, "In India's intensely competitive telecommunication industry, the pace of business growth is faster than ever. IDEA's solution is a reflection of our commitment to helping our clients generate competitive advantage in the rapidly expanding market."

With the ever-increasing popularity of conducting business online, a significant portion of the customer experience is now dictated by call center processes and agents. Organizations are increasingly leveraging the situation to their advantage, differentiating themselves through robust contact centers that helps enable increased efficiency, lower costs, enhanced productivity and higher revenue. IP telephony using Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) and other real-time collaboration technologies can quicken the pulse of an organization -- and helps potentially enable heightened productivity, faster response to customers, greater agility in capturing business opportunities and a more innovative, competitive approach.

"Globalization demands open, application-rich unified communications systems that take full advantage of a highly secure, services-rich, intelligent network foundation," said Naresh Wadhwa, Country Manager for Cisco India & SAARC. "The rich collaboration capabilities that IDEA is enabling through Cisco UC helps enable them to be more collaborative with their employees and customers, thus driving business growth."

About IDEA Cellular:

"IDEA is part of the Aditya Birla Group, a US $24 billion corporation with a market capitalization of US $31.5 billion, and in the league of the Fortune 500. It is anchored by an extraordinary force of over 100,000 employees belonging to 25 different nationalities. Over 50% of its revenues flow from its operations overseas. The Group has been adjudged 'The Best Employer in India and among the top 20 in Asia' by the Hewitt-Economic Times and Wall Street Journal Study 2007."

Contact(s) information

Clay Helm
IBM Media Relations, Telecommunications Industry
415-545-2212
clayhelm@us.ibm.com

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