IBM Acquires Aragon Consulting Group

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ST. LOUIS - 11 Jul 2000: -IBM today announced the acquisition of Aragon Consulting Group, a marketing research and strategy firm based in St. Louis.

The acquisition of Aragon's deep marketing and branding experience strengthens IBM's ability to deliver the entire spectrum of e-business services, from business strategy to back-end integration. Financial terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.

Aragon was founded in 1982 and serves Fortune 500 companies in the U.S., Canada and the U. K. with e-marketing and e-business strategy consulting. Aragon's clients include The Chicago Tribune, Toyota, Meredith Corporation, N-Star, Southern California Edison, PG&E, Cincinnati Bell Telephone, Blue Shield of California, and Bank of America.

Aragon specializes in market research, strategy, market segmentation, new product and service development, competitive benchmarking, brand positioning and architecture, as well as methodologies for creating customer value.

Among its more than 15,000 e-business services professionals worldwide, IBM now has more than 1,500 consultants specializing in industry-specific e-business strategy, including the retail/distribution, manufacturing, banking/insurance, government, healthcare, telcom, media/entertainment and utilities industries.

"This acquisition brings together the rich strategic marketing heritage of Aragon and IBM's strong e-business strategy and design consulting, application development and integration services," said Neil Isford, vice president, e-business, IBM Global Services. "Combining their marketing acumen with our business and technology experience provides our customers the most robust solutions possible."

"We saw the kind of e-business clients IBM attracts, and we knew it was a perfect opportunity for our professional skills and experience," said Gary Miller, president, Aragon. "IBM has some of the most exciting Web projects under development, providing an excellent creative challenge for Aragon's professionals."

IBM Global Services is the world's largest information technology services provider, with 1999 revenues of more than $32 billion. Services is the fastest growing part of IBM, with more than 138,000 professionals serving customers in 160 countries. IBM Global Services integrates IBM's broad range of capabilities -- services, hardware, software and research -- to help companies of all sizes realize the full value of information technology. Its worldwide network of e-business innovation centers are helping thousands of customers envision and build Web solutions for real business. For more information visit www.ibm.com/services/innovation.

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