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IBM Lotus Software Unveils New Workplace Solution for Consumer Products Industry

IBM Lotus Workplace for Consumer Products Customer Management Streamlines Internal, External Communications for Sales Teams

SOMERS, NY - 18 Dec 2003: Executing against IBM's increased focus on industry-specific software solutions, IBM today announced IBM Lotus Workplace for Consumer Products Customer Management. The software offering can help increase sales efficiency for consumer product organizations by providing sales leaders with real-time access to team members, customers and online training.

The new Lotus Workplace for Consumer Products Customer Management offering tailors portal-based collaboration capabilities to specific consumer product industry needs, such as minimizing sales organization complexities and responding more quickly to customer demands and emerging market trends.

Built on open standards, the IBM Lotus Workplace collaboration platform allows customers to integrate IBM collaboration software easily. IBM Lotus Workplace for Consumer Products Customer Management integrates the IBM Lotus Learning Management System (LMS), a full-featured e-learning solution, with IBM WebSphere Portal, a personalized single integration point for processes, content, people and applications that includes security features. Through this integrated IBM solution, users of Lotus Workplace for Consumer Products Customer Management have the ability to 1) access key account information from specific consumer products solution providers to expedite decision-making, 2) develop crucial skills and knowledge via e-learning and 3) spend less time on administrative tasks and more time addressing customer demands.

The offering also provides account managers with the ability to monitor and respond to changing business conditions through a tailored portal. This allows the managers to focus on their core job responsibilities by reducing the amount of paperwork and helps create efficiencies by making collaboration within their organization as simple as a click of a mouse.

"Similar to many industries, consumer product organizations are looking beyond standalone products and brands to more complete packaged infrastructure offerings to address issues specific to their industry," said Larry Bowden, IBM Vice President, Portal and Lotus Products. "An essential component of IBM software's industry solutions focus, the Lotus Workplace offerings are designed to enable employees in consumer product organizations and other vertical markets to drive new levels of automation and flexibility into their processes. The approach allows employees to focus more on rapid response to opportunities, which can translate into higher customer satisfaction and increased sales."

"The IBM Lotus Workplace for Consumer Products Customer Management offering meets the market need for efficient, cost-effective solutions tailored to industry-specific challenges," said David Vickrey, vice president of alliances for SkillSoft, a leading provider of e-learning content and referenceware for business and IT professionals. "Through our relationship with IBM, we can offer customers e-learning courses and other resources that will address the unique management and training needs of companies in this vertical market, integrated with a platform that deploys, manages and tracks learning activities."

IBM currently anticipates that IBM Lotus Workplace for Consumer Products Customer Management will be available worldwide in January 2004. Additional information on Lotus Workplace can be found at www.ibm.com/lotus/workplace.

Contact(s) information

Jennifer Snyder
IBM Media Relations
(617) 693-7539
jennifer_snyder@us.ibm.com

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