Parion and IBM Sign Long-Term Strategic Agreement

Largest German Outsourcing Deal And Largest in European Insurance Industry

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Stuttgart, Cologne - 22 Apr 1999: - The German insurance company, Parion and IBM have signed a strategic information technology (IT) agreement valued at $ 800 million over 10 years. The new agreement includes an existing outsourcing contract with Gothaer Versicherungen signed in 1994. The agreement is the largest strategic outsourcing contract in the European insurance industry and the largest outsourcing contract in Germany.

"Parion was formed in 1997 through the merger of Gothaer Versicherungen and Berlin-Kölnische Versicherungen, becoming one of the top ten insurance companies in Germany", comments Dr. Herbert Schmitz, member of the board of Parion. "Together with IBM Global Services, we are now going to implement a common IT strategy for the company and leverage the related synergies."

IBM Global Services will operate Parion's entire IT environment and will be responsible for application development and maintenance. This agreement follows an outsourcing contract which IBM signed with Gothaer Versicherungen in 1994. The joint service company IDG (Informationsverarbeitung und Dienstleistungen GmbH) has been increased to nearly 500 employees.

Plans for Joint Center of Competence
Parion and IBM are also planning to create a Center of Competence for the insurance industry. The Center will leverage the potential of e-business, business intelligence and other state-of-the-art solutions for the insurance industry. "Customer Relationship Management is increasingly becoming the dominating topic in the industry. Customer service and understanding the customer´s needs are the success factors", explained Norbert Dick, manager of the Insurance Sector Solutions Unit, IBM Germany.

"Our partnership with Parion is unique in Germany", said Ernst Koller, general manager, IBM Global Services, Central Region. "Parion expects us to provide real growth impact and new industry solutions to be well positioned in a competitive market. Since a company´s competitive edge increasingly depends upon its use of IT, service providers more than ever need to be strategic partners."

Parion offers strong brands, innovative products and cross-sector solutions in the areas of insurance and capital investment under a single roof. With premium income of 7 billion D-Mark and 25 billion D-Mark capital investment, Parion is one of the biggest insurance companies in the German market. 6000 employees work for more than 4 million members.

IBM Global Services is the world's largest information technology services provider, with 1998 revenues of approximately $29 billion. Services is the fastest growing part of IBM, with more than 126,000 professionals serving companies 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. In September 1998, IBM Global Services and Cable & Wireless Communications announced the largest strategic outsourcing contract ever signed in Europe, valued at $ 3 billion. For more information visit

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