IBM and AT&T Deliver Integrated, Internet-ready Collaboration Solution for Small and Medium-sized Organizations


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CAMBRIDGE, Mass. & BEDMINSTER, N.J. - 02 Mar 2005: IBM and AT&T announced that they will jointly offer a packaged team collaboration solution that will make it easier for small to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) to buy and deploy collaboration software with integrated Internet access capabilities.

The new package, IBM(R) Workplace(TM) Services Express with AT&T Managed Internet Service, will be based on IBM's Workplace Services Express, an "out of the box" collaboration solution with an integrated portal, and AT&T Managed Internet Service for secure, dedicated, high-speed Internet access.

Workplace Services Express provides team rooms, instant messaging, document management and an integrated portal so that SMBs will be able to share, organize and integrate information with employees, contractors and partners. Bundling Workplace Services Express with AT&T Managed Internet Service provides SMBs with a simple and easy way to build a collaborative, Internet-ready solution for their organization without investing significant time or IT resources. The bundle is currently in pilot stage and will ultimately be available through local IBM Business Partners and AT&T Authorized Agents.

IBM Workplace Services Express with AT&T Managed Internet Service installs on a single IBM xSeries eServer, providing a cost-effective solution that is easier to install and maintain than other offerings that require multiple servers. Backed by AT&T's secure, reliable Internet access service, the bundle supports both Windows or Linux-based servers as well as Windows or Linux browser-based clients.

Support for multiple operating systems provides customers with flexibility and choice as to the particular server platform they wish to support, and allows team members to access project-related documents, business applications and other information from practically anywhere using a supported PC-based browser.

"This is a unique offering in the market and positions AT&T and IBM and our business partners to continue to add customer value as IT and IP convergence accelerates," said Ken Bisconti, IBM vice president of Workplace, Portal and Collaboration. "While mid market customers value IBM and AT&T brands they prefer to work with local solution providers and regional systems integrators. With the new bundle IBM Business Partners and AT&T Authorized Agents will have the opportunity to add value and facilitate implementation, integration and management of the solution."

"Our joint portal solution gives AT&T agents and IBM Business Partners an easy-to-implement portal and a secure Internet connectivity bundle, enabling them to offer their customers a competitive tool that helps them to reduce their costs, see swift return on their investment and better compete in their market," said Eric Shepcaro, chief strategist for AT&T Business Services.

New Business Opportunities for IBM and AT&T Business Partners
According to IBM internal research, networking and collaboration are top investment areas for mid-market customers, and in many cases the decisions for hardware, software and networking are made by the same person. By consolidating and offering an end-to-end, IP networking and IT solution, the new bundled offering will help IBM Business Partners and AT&T Authorized Agents to expand their market reach and tap new routes to market. Delivered through IBM and AT&T business partners, the bundled offer has the advantage of easing acquisition and management of the solution by reducing points of contact. Cooperative suppliers and support through local partners will help facilitate the acquisition and reduce deployment time for the total solution.

Omaha, Nebraska-based MSI is a leading IBM Business Partner that sells both IBM Solutions and AT&T Internet Services.

"The SMB marketplace gets the most value from the IBM and AT&T end-to-end IT solution," said Mike Fischer, vice president, Enterprise Software and Solutions, MSI Systems Integrators. "It helps keep cost down, speed implementation and improve employee productivity, leading to a healthier bottom line."

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