June 05, 2006 18:15 ET

IBM to Send International Delegation to 2006 Global Summit of Women

ARMONK, NY--(CCNMatthews - June 05, 2006) -

Participation Underscores Company's New Global Women Initiative

IBM will send a delegation of women from four continents to participate in the 2006 Global Summit of Women June 9th-12th in Cairo, Egypt, it was announced recently by Marilyn Johnson, Vice President, IBM Market Development. The company's participation in this year's Summit supports the Global Women Initiatives that IBM Market Development is launching along with executives and Business Partners around the world.

Described as the "Davos for Women," the Global Summit of Women celebrates women's leadership by bringing women from around the world together for workshops, including an entrepreneurial track, roundtable discussions and the exchange of creative ideas and best practices related to business and economic empowerment. The IBM delegation is comprised of corporate executives and managers from Europe, North America, Asia and Africa, many of whom will actively participate in such panel discussions as "Developing a Brand for Your Business" and "Workers' Voices in Work/Life Balance."

Small and medium businesses owned, led or influenced by women have been identified by IBM as being strategic clients that are key to the company's growth. Along with partnering with women's organizations across the globe and participating in a host of international women's forums, the company recently announced that it has commissioned the Center for Women's Business Research to conduct a study designed to gain new information specific to the buying behavior, challenges and key issues confronting businesses owned, led or influenced by women worldwide. The results of the study are scheduled to be released late this year. In addition, IBM has established a network of executives and Business Partners in cities around the world who are focused on providing affordable technology and business solutions to help women-owned, -led and -influenced companies start, manage and grow their businesses.

"IBM was one of the first companies to recognize that women owned businesses were growing at a tremendous rate and were making significant impact on the global economy," Marilyn Johnson said. "Sponsoring events at the Global Summit of Women like the 'Growing a Business' luncheon and the 'Dialogue with Women Enterprise Leaders' gives us a chance to connect with existing and potential clients to discuss how we can do business together. IBM is a very large corporation, but we want companies owned, led and influenced by women to know that, in a marketplace with global opportunities, they want to partner with a strong IT provider who can help them grow their business."

Cairo, the site of the Global Summit of Women, is also home to one of IBM's premier Technology Development Centres (TDC). Established in 1982, the Cairo TDC is a Global Resource site and a CMMi level 5 organization. It has been recognized for driving the growth of research and development in the Middle East and has earned a world-class reputation for innovation. The TDC female population has grown to +35% over the past few years. It sponsors an internship program with the Dubai Women's College, enabling Arab women to gain the experience of working at IBM. TDC is implementing the first IBM's Diversity Project in the Middle East through partnering with the National Council of Women in building "Women Development Community Portal" that will be one e-source of information for women in Egypt and the Middle East. TDC is also a key player in the development of "Eternal Egypt" web site It was developed by IBM, in partnership with the Egyptian government, to showcase the country's ancient civilization on the web. Eternal Egypt provides a rich, interactive multimedia experience through the nation's museums and at historic sites. Last year, the United Nations World Summit listed Eternal Egypt in its "Best of 2005" e-culture category. It has also won the best Arabic e-content award in the Shargha (United Arab Emirates) heritage festival in April 2006.

About IBM

IBM is the world's largest information technology company, with 80 years of leadership in helping businesses innovate. Drawing on resources from across IBM and key Business Partners, IBM offers a wide range of services, solutions and technologies that enable customers, large and small, to take full advantage of the new era of on demand business. For more information about IBM, visit

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