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New IBM Offerings Help Midsize Companies Work Smarter

Recent IBM Study of Midmarket CIOs Shows Making Better Use of Data is Top Competitive Priority

MIDSIZE ENTERPRISE SUMMIT WEST & LOS ANGELES - 14 Sep 2009: IBM (NYSE: IBM) today introduced new services, software and systems for midsize companies that can help them gain actionable insight, increase productivity, and improve collaboration.

IBM is introducing Cognos Express business intelligence software, an analytics solution designed for companies with 100 to 1,000 employees. 

Also being introduced is a new offering from IBM Global Technology Services, the IBM Storage Optimization and Integration Services - transformation strategy – rapid.  In addition, two existing products IBM Mashup Center, and Lotus Live Engage, have been certified by IBM as “Midmarket Ready.”  Recently, IBM also introduced a new storage system, the IBM System Storage DS5020 Express, and updated the SurePOS 500 Express point-of-sale solution. 

Cognos Express is designed to deliver essential business intelligence and planning capabilities purpose built for midsize companies.  To read more about Cognos Express please see this news release.  In addition, a virtual event will be held on Sept. 29 providing an in-depth look at IBM Cognos Express with product demonstrations that showcase the full range of its reporting, analysis and planning capabilities.  Register here.  

Cognos Express helps medium-size companies turn data into actionable insight which is a top priority for midmarket CIOs looking to improve their companies’ competitiveness, according to a new IBM Global CIO survey of midsize companies. 

After business intelligence, midmarket company CIOs listed virtualization solutions, risk management and collaboration technologies as their top technology concerns. 

IBM conducted 158 in person interviews with midmarket CIOs from January through April 2009 to understand their issues, priorities, and views on the role of IT. The sample includes CIOs from 31 countries across a range of industries. 

“These new offerings hit all the critical areas identified by midsize company CIOs including technology that will help them more effectively use information to enhance competitiveness, improve collaboration and increase efficiency,”  said Marc Dupaquier, IBM general manager of the global mid market. 

Watch a video with Marc Dupaquier and IBM CIO Pat Toole discussing the midsize company CIO study findings here

RFID Innovation
One example of a company that has used information technology to work smarter is Pacific Coast Producers (PCP), a California based premium packager of canned fruits and tomatoes.  In response to demands from large national retail chains the company created an RFID tracking system with help from IBM Global Business Services consultants and IBM Business Partner OATSystems.  The solution incorporates OATSystems' RFID application software, IBM System x servers and IBM middleware including MQSeries, DB2 and WebSphere. 

“Pacific Coast Producers seized the opportunity to go beyond RFID tracking by infusing the solution with business intelligence capabilities that help to improve processes and position the company as a customer-focused supplier,” said Peter Wtulich,

CIO and vice president for Information Services at PCP.  “What began as a customer mandate became a valuable new source of information and insight that helps PCP work smarter.” 

All of the new offerings listed below are part of IBM's Midmarket portfolio. That means IBM has certified that the offering is appropriate for midsize companies, has trained IBM sellers and Business Partners on the offering and has priced the offering so that companies with between 100 and 1,000 employees will see a rapid return on their investment. 

IBM Mashup Center
IBM Mashup Center  makes it easy for midsize businesses to combine information from diverse sources in entirely new ways to unlock business value.  A 20 user license for IBM Mashup Center is priced at $2,600. 

Watch an IBM Mashup Center video that demonstrates its power and ease of use.  Additional IBM Mashup Center “How To” videos can be found on the popular external Lotus Greenhouse  site.  Lotus Greenhouse is a live community website where you can use Lotus collaboration products at no charge. Anyone can join the community to exchange ideas, collaborate with others, and share information on innovation and collaborative products.  Lotus Greenhouse offers the opportunity for anyone to take the Mashup Center Introductory Tutorial, or view and create sample mashup pages. 

"IBM’s Mashup Center helps non-technical people help themselves by making it easy to assemble quick applications from many different sources like Web pages, spreadsheets, Web feeds and databases and uses that data to create valuable information that helps address daily business challenges," Dupaquier said.

Lotus Live Engage
LotusLive Engage is a cloud-delivered service that enables midsize companies to network and collaborate beyond corporate firewalls, without increasing the resources in their IT departments.

The latest new feature is LotusLive Mobile, a new beta offering, that allows users to attend LotusLive Engage Web conferences via BlackBerry® smartphones and other mobile devices, saving time, money  and providing work-style flexibility.  Download the beta offering here.

LotusLive Engage provides browser-based collaboration tools including Web conferencing, instant messaging, project management, and document sharing.  Pricing starts as low as $15 per user per month.  This fall, Lotus Live Engage will support nine new languages including Brazilian Portuguese, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Simplified Chinese, Spanish, and Traditional Chinese.

See a video demonstration of Lotus Live Engage here.

A complimentary 30-day trial of Lotus Live Engage is available here including no-cost Web meetings for up to 15 people, file storing and sharing and business networking capabilities.

"LotusLive gives small businesses access to collaboration tools that can help them rapidly work with partners and customers at a low price to drive immediate business results," said Phil Salm, IBM software solutions specialist, CDW.

IBM Storage Optimization and Integration Services - transformation strategy – rapid
This new offering helps midsize companies build a detailed and actionable plan to achieve a best practice state for heterogeneous storage and backup environments in order to drive cost savings or cost avoidance for staffing, storage, backup, file systems, and power and cooling.

The IBM Storage Optimization and Integration Services – transformation strategy – rapid is designed for midsize businesses across virtually all industries who are experiencing explosive growth in the amount of information they are dealing with and are looking to reduce or more efficiently maintain their information and better manage storage operating and capital costs.

This service provides a detailed roadmap to help identify the roots of unnecessary complexity and cost by using eight key metrics to measure the efficiency and effectiveness of a customer's interconnected IT and storage environments.

IBM System Storage DS5020 Express
The IBM DS5020 Express disk system is designed to provide midsize businesses with the performance, reliability, and robust functionality that large companies are accustomed to – at an affordable price.  Its core features and dynamic flexibility make it a great fit for a wide range of requirements, proving piece of mind and exceptional return on investment.

The DS5020 supports all current premium features, including encryption, partitioning, FlashCopy, VolumeCopy and Enhanced Remote Mirroring. 

SurePOS 500 Express
The new IBM SurePOS 500 Express point-of-sale solution features a new slimmer design and captures real-time information that can be leveraged to implement new customer service initiatives, manage inventory and deliver smarter business outcomes.

It also is easy to assemble, easy to use, speeds up transaction times, significantly reduces power consumption, and is designed to meet the needs of small and midsize companies.

IBM Business Partners
To support IBM Business Partners selling into the midmarket, IBM rolled out new skills and training focused on “Selling to the CFO.”  As the CFO becomes more central in purchasing decisions, this education enables partners to more effectively engage the CFO.  Since it was introduced in May, 5,000 partners have completed the training and gained these critical skills.  IBM also recently introduced the IBM Business Partner Development Series where the company is hosting more than 60 no-cost online classes and 25 Smarter Planet-themed education and networking events at IBM Innovation Centers around the world.  From San Mateo to Shanghai, the education covers the Smarter Planet agenda, as well as detailed sessions on dynamic infrastructure, green IT, new intelligence and smart work.

IBM Global Financing
While market and credit conditions are evolving, IBM Global Financing continues to lend to qualified customers. IBM Financing Advantage offers a comprehensive portfolio of financing solutions to help address the requirements of midsize businesses to fund their IT agendas, maximize working capital, recover technology value and manage risk.

About IBM
Learn more about new midsized business solutions from IBM.

Midsize businesses now have access to IBM and third party subject matter experts on infoBOOM!, an interactive IT strategy community that is run jointly by IBM and CIO.com.  infoBOOM! is a place to discuss  industry trends, to gain insights that can help companies improve the way they do business, and to find relevant and timely information to solve business problems and address the unique challenges facing midsize companies.  You can visit the infoBOOM! community on CIO.com at http://theinfoboom.com, or join either the Facebook infoBOOM! group, or the infoBOOM! group on LinkedIn.

Contact(s) information

Jeffrey Gluck
IBM Media Relations
914-765-6072
201-927-4507 (m)
jgluck@us.ibm.com

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