IBM To Acquire Equitant, Leader In Order-To-Cash Managed Services

Acquisition Will Enhance IBM’s Capabilities in Key Emerging Business Services

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Dublin & New York - 02 Feb 2005: IBM announced today that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Equitant, a global business transformation outsourcing (BTO) provider that focuses on the management and optimization of the Order-to-Cash cycle for large companies.  The company has offices in Ireland and North America and serves clients globally. 

The Order-to-Cash cycle includes all financial processes associated with receiving an order for a product or service, through to receiving payment.  These could include order capture, credit management, billing, collections, dispute resolutions/deduction management, cash applications, financial reporting and analysis. 

This acquisition expands IBM's capabilities in Finance and Administration (F&A) transformation services, and will enable IBM to meet growing client demand for improved performance and greater benefits in the area of Order-to-Cash processing.  Analyst firm, IDC projects that the finance and accounting business process outsourcing (BPO) services spending will be $16.5B in 2005.

IBM will combine Equitant's heritage of client value creation through domain expertise and Order-to-Cash integrated solutions with its own consulting, managed operations and transformation methodologies to create significant financial, operational and strategic benefits for clients.  These benefits provide our clients the opportunity to improve customer satisfaction, increase competitive advantage with better access to customer information, and enhance business flexibility, visibility and control.  Additionally, clients will benefit from a reduction in operating costs, reduced profit leakage, more available working capital and minimized capital expenditure in order to drive bottom-line results.

"Our clients realize the value of partnering with companies that can transform, manage and operate Finance & Administration operations over a sustained period, and Equitant's expertise in the Order-to-Cash area will enable IBM to better target this growing business opportunity," said Donniel Schulman, Vice President, Global Finance & Administration BTO, IBM Business Consulting Services.  "Equitant's process expertise will be integrated with IBM's expertise in finance and accounting analytics to enable clients to optimize this key element of their financial operations."

"The acquisition of Equitant by IBM is exciting news for our clients and employees as both will be able to benefit from the enhanced capabilities of two F&A business transformation service providers to improve their opportunity for greater value creation," said Paul French, Founder and Co-Chairman, Equitant. "Equally the acquisition provides a foundation for greater global reach in this high-growth business segment."

More than 200 Equitant employees are part of this acquisition. The transaction, which will be reviewed by regulatory authorities, is expected to close in March.  Financial terms were not disclosed. 

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