SOURCE: IBM

October 17, 2007 11:22 ET

Union Bank of India Partners With IBM to Centralize Pan-India Branch

IBM's Infrastructure Management Solutions Centralize Business Applications of Over 2,274 UBI Branches and Enhance Operational Agility for Future Growth

MUMBAI, INDIA--(Marketwire - October 17, 2007) - IBM India (NYSE: IBM) today announced that it has successfully implemented comprehensive infrastructure and technology services for Union Bank of India (UBI), one of India's leading public sector banks. IBM established the server and storage system infrastructure needed to centralize UBI's extensive branch network across India including those in rural areas.

The highly scalable and resilient hardware platform brought Union Bank's 2,274 branches and 135 extension counters under a common IT framework while simultaneously enabling a higher number of transactions, thereby reducing costs and allowing Union Bank to respond better and faster to customer demand. As a result, the bank is today one of the few banks in India that has implemented a fully integrated, centralized banking architecture capable of offering banking services anywhere at anytime across all branches. The bank will leverage this capability and ultimately bring all of its branches under the Core Banking System (CBS) network offering anytime, anywhere banking. Currently 1,211 of the bank's branches and extension counters are a part of the CBS network.

In addition, IBM Global Technology Services will provide UBI with superior disaster recovery and business continuity capabilities -- a must-have in the financial services sector. Once in place, the 'on-demand' computing model will allow UBI to scale its computing resources according to business requirements in real-time.

UBI and IBM signed the agreement in February of 2007.

Speaking on the occasion, Mr. M V Nair, Chairman and Managing Director, Union Bank of India, said, "To meet our growth objectives we needed to move to a centralized environment where economies of scale, consistency and firm-wide synchronization of data will bring significant benefits. Centralizing our extensive branch network under a common IT platform is a complex undertaking, requiring significant infrastructure management expertise and experience. I'm happy to state that IBM was best equipped to develop and execute a strategy that is focused on eliminating the risk associated with change, reducing investment cost and providing an appropriate return on investment over the entire lifecycle of the project."

Mr. Kumar Karpe, country manager, Financial Services Sector, IBM India, said, "For IBM this was a great opportunity to work with one of the leading banks in India. With this partnership, UBI will be able to focus on its core strengths and strategy. With the market growing rapidly, this new IT architecture will enable them to adapt and go to market quickly in a cost-effective manner. The IBM-created IT infrastructure will help UBI support, extend and strengthen its customer relationship with the banks anywhere at anytime."

The IBM infrastructure provides UBI with following benefits:

--  Performance enhancements
--  Greater flexibility and lower IT management costs
--  Consistent, real-time data and information on demand
--  Robust, high-availability IT infrastructure with minimum disruption to
    business
    

IBM supplied, installed and will maintain IBM pSeries servers to host UBI's Core Banking Application which was previously hosted on a Sun Solaris platform. The project involved migration of data from Hitachi Storage to IBM DS 8300 systems. As part of the project, IBM will help set-up a help desk for core banking users across all branches and provide facility management including network management and 24x7 support and maintenance of core infrastructure at all sites. IBM will also offer consulting services to UBI with regards their Business Continuity Process requirement.

About Union Bank of India

Union Bank of India is one of India's largest state-run banks and is also listed on the Forbes 2000. One of India's oldest banks, it commenced operations in 1919 and has the privilege of having its registered office inaugurated by Mahatma Gandhi in the year 1920. With 2,274 branches, 135 extension counters and over 26,000 employees across the country, Union Bank has a total business mix of over Rs 1,50,000 crores (US$ 37.25 billion) as of June 2007. Union Bank's vision is to be the Bank of first choice for customers by building beneficial and lasting relationships with customers through a process of continuous improvement, and in recent years the pursuit of this vision has seen it embrace state-of-the-art banking technology, including online banking and payment gateway solutions. As a result, the bank has earned a reputation for being technology-savvy and customer service-focused.

About IBM

For more information about IBM, go to www.ibm.com.

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