IBM To Provide New Retail Banking System For U.K. Post Office

Post Office Ltd Gears Up For Electronic Delivery Of Social Benefits By April 2003

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London - 28 Mar 2002: Post Office Ltd has awarded IBM a $71 million contract to design, build and manage a new e-business infrastructure which will transform Post Office counter systems, connecting them to major banks and its own new Card Account. Customers will be able to use their local Post Office to access bank accounts and withdraw benefits and new tax credits such as pensions and child tax credits. This is particularly important in remote or rural areas where people may not have easy access to the cash machines or bank branches.

Alan Barrie, executive director, change and IS, Post Office Ltd, said: "This system will help us improve the services provided by our network of 17,500 Post Office branches across the country. It will enable us to provide a banking service in areas which might not be covered by the main high street banks. Post Office Ltd has selected IBM because of its excellent track record in high profile public sector projects and its expertise in the delivery of successful e-banking solutions. Today's news is consistent with our strategy to partner with key technology service providers. As well as IBM's technological expertise, they have an invaluable understanding of our business, which will help us meet the objectives that have been set for us by the government."

The Post Office Ltd was looking for an IT infrastructure that will be secure and robust enough to handle processing of the transactions being routed to and from its retail Post Office branches. IBM's solution will consist of a managed service providing the transaction switch, which sits on the IBM S/390 platform, and relies on resilient Parallel Sysplex architecture as the routing and processing engine for all transactions. This infrastructure, known as the Network Banking Engine (NBE), is being supplied by IBM and supported by eFunds' EFT products, CONNEX and Datanavigator.

Christian Noll, managing principal, public sector, IBM Global Services said "Today's news shows that IBM will play a key part in the electronic transformation of Post Office Ltd. The Post Office recognizes the role technology can play in defining leadership, creating business value and enhancing the customer experience. IBM will contribute world class skills and expertise in leveraging technology for business advantage."

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