IBM Acquiring Order-to-cash Managed Services Provider

Deal to buy Equitant aimed at beefing up Big Blue's capabilities in emerging business transformation services segment

Deal to buy Equitant aimed at beefing up Big Blue's capabilities in emerging business transformation services segment

New York — February 10, 2005 — IBM is acquiring Equitant, a global business transformation outsourcing (BTO) provider that focuses on the management and optimization of the order-to-cash cycle for large companies. Equitant has offices in Ireland and North America and serves clients globally.

The order-to-cash cycle includes all financial processes associated with receiving an order for a product or service, through to receiving payment. These could include order capture, credit management, billing, collections, dispute resolutions/deduction management, cash applications, financial reporting and analysis.

Big Blue said that this acquisition expands its capabilities in finance and administration (F&A) transformation services, and will enable IBM to meet growing client demand for improved performance and greater benefits in the area of order-to-cash processing. Analyst firm IDC projects that spending on finance and accounting business process outsourcing (BPO) services will hit $16.5 billion in 2005.

IBM said it would combine Equitant's order-to-cash expertise and solutions with its own consulting, managed operations and transformation methodologies. Potential benefits for IBM clients could include the opportunity to improve customer satisfaction and increase competitive advantage with better access to customer information, and to reduce operating costs and profit leakage.

"Our clients realize the value of partnering with companies that can transform, manage and operate finance and administration operations over a sustained period, and Equitant's expertise in the order-to-cash area will enable IBM to better target this growing business opportunity," said Donniel Schulman, vice president of global finance and administration BTO with IBM Business Consulting Services. "Equitant's process expertise will be integrated with IBM's expertise in finance and accounting analytics to enable clients to optimize this key element of their financial operations."

More than 200 Equitant employees are part of this acquisition. The transaction, which will be reviewed by regulatory authorities, is expected to close in March. Financial terms were not disclosed.

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