Ericsson and IBM join forces to help financial services companies - Offer next generation Mobile Internet services

Ericsson and IBM today announced they will work together to help financial services companies deliver Mobile Internet offerings that go beyond today's Business-to-Consumer services such as retrieving checking account information. The two companies will develop and implement technology that enables high-value, high-volume Business-to-Client services such as wealth management, account aggregation, mobile trading, and credit card and payment alerts.

The alliance will combine the wireless telecommunications expertise of Ericsson with the financial services and information technology expertise of IBM. The two companies will develop and market a joint offering tailored to the needs of financial services companies. The aim is to give financial institutions a standard, highly scalable and secure end-to-end infrastructure for implementing robust, high-volume services across multiple financial channels.

The companies' joint offering will combine Ericsson Mobile Internet application building blocks such as Ericsson Mobile e-Pay, Safetrader and WAP Gateway with the IBM WebSphere infrastructure family of products, including WebSphere Everyplace Suite, and the IBM eServer family of products. IBM Global Services will provide business innovation consulting and IT integration services.

"The alliance between Ericsson and IBM is a powerful proposition. Given the depth of IBM's relationships with the world's leading banks and Ericsson's pioneering work in the mobile commerce space, we anticipate great interest among the financial community," said Remus Brett, manager, Financial Services Technology Practice, Datamonitor. "We firmly believe next generation mobile services are going to be critical for banks in the next two to three years. This alliance should enable banks to position themselves favorably regardless of future changes in networks, devices and payment technologies."

"Many of the wireless projects underway at banks and financial services firms today are in pilot stage, involving only a few hundred consumers and undertaken on a one-off basis to gain first-mover advantage," said Dr. Mark N. Greene, vice president, Strategy and Solutions, IBM Global Financial Services Sector. "While many benefits have been realized, financial services companies now are faced with the challenge of delivering higher value financial services to hundreds of thousands of customers located around the globe. The IBM and Ericsson alliance will develop the necessary infrastructure for financial services companies to integrate Mobile Internet into their multi-channel strategy, allowing them to easily offer the next generation financial services to build customer loyalty."

"The Ericsson and IBM alliance is an important step in realizing our strategy to create and drive Mobile Internet applications. It aims to bring a unique combination of expertise to the market to enable financial institutions eager to capitalize on the opportunities of Mobile Internet," said Lars Boman, president, Ericsson Internet Applications. "It will accelerate the uptake of Mobile Internet for financial services and will drive the development of additional applications and traffic volume for GPRS and 3G in this sector."

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