Bank Austria Selects IBM Services to Support New Banking Strategy

IBM to open first Banking Solutions Center in Austria bringing industry expertise to local financial services companies

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Vienna, Austria - 10 Jun 2011: IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced it has signed a five-year services agreement with Bank Austria, a member of UniCredit.  

The agreement signifies a major step to strengthen Bank Austria's infrastructure and support its growing business. IBM has developed a cohesive strategy encompassing information technology (IT) support and application services to reduce complexity across Bank Austria's operations and enable the Bank to strengthen its market position and focus on customer needs.

"IBM has been a key provider of hardware solutions for Bank Austria and we are pleased that with the new services agreement we continue to benefit from IBM's expertise and have the opportunity to consolidate processes within the Bank that enable us to focus on core competencies and customer needs," said Willibald Cernko, Chief Executive Officer, Bank Austria.

UniCredit Group intends to apply the IT management model in other markets according to market-specific needs. The international banking group expects this strategic shift to create synergies in more markets and savings throughout Europe.

New Banking Solutions Center to Deliver Services

In addition to the new agreement with Bank Austria, IBM will build the first Austrian Banking Solutions Center located in Vienna.

The Banking Solutions Center will provide services in the field of application development, application management and IT management as the new competence center for Bank Austria. It will merge the expertise of Bank Austria and IBM specialists in order develop and deliver key application, database and IT support to Bank Austria. About 300 out of a total of 900 employees of the bank's IT companies Bank Austria Global Information Services and the Austrian branch of UniCredit Global Information Services will move to the Banking Solutions Center.

"The agreement with Bank Austria and development of the Banking Solutions Center reinforces the quality and strength of the capability and expertise that IBM can offer the Austrian financial services sector to support in the future," said Tatjana Oppitz, IBM Austria Country General Manager.

The Banking Solutions Center will operate as an independent provider of innovative IT services including software development, application management, database management and data center management.  It will help banking institutes address the challenges the industry is facing, in particular the new regulatory framework such as Basel III, deposit insurance or national bank taxation.

IBM has established Banking Solutions Centers in other countries such as Germany and Switzerland. In Austria, a related model is up and running for the insurance sector, where IBM provides services to other clients, including the Vienna Insurance Group, one of the largest insurance companies in Austria.

The agreement with Bank Austria was signed in the second quarter of 2011 and the Banking Solutions Center will be operational in June 2011.

Today's announcement with Bank Austria is another example of how IBM Global Services teams with its clients to solve business problems and help them capitalize on new opportunities. Clients today are looking to IT services providers for more than just cost cutting. Global clients need help finding ways to better leverage IT into their business to stimulate growth and prepare for the future. By tightly weaving together business insights, an industry-leading software portfolio, world-class technology research and operations expertise, IBM is redefining what it means to design, deploy and deliver IT services on a global scale. As a result, IBM Global Services clients achieve faster return on investments while freeing up resources to focus on innovative projects.

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