IBM Beefs up Supply Chain BTO Offering with Viacore Acquisition

Big Blue adds integration specialist to lineup as it strengthens business transformation outsourcing offering

Big Blue adds integration specialist to lineup as it strengthens business transformation outsourcing offering

Armonk, NY — February 13, 2006 — Tech giant IBM has acquired Viacore, a provider of business process integration solutions for real-time supply chain visibility, as Big Blue looks to strengthen its business transformation outsourcing (BTO) capabilities in the $23.5 billion market for supply chain optimization and management services.

Financial terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.

Last year IBM introduced a supply chain BTO capability, tapping into its internal supply chain experience, consulting expertise and analytics technologies, with a goal to help businesses operate and manage end-to-end supply chain processes.

The Viacore acquisition further expands IBM's capabilities, specifically in the electronics and retail industries, by enabling a client and its supply chain partners to exchange information on capacity, inventory, production, sourcing, delivery, forecasting and planning in real-time. IBM said that this ability enables communities of supply chain partners to reduce costs, improve responsiveness to customers and forge more tightly integrated relationships.

"Building a responsive, integrated supply chain that operates in real-time with suppliers, partners and customers is a highly complex proposition that requires a unique combination of consulting, technology and services skills," said Bill Ciemny, vice president for global supply chain BTO solutions at IBM. "With the acquisition of Viacore, IBM adds to an already well-established portfolio consisting of internal and external partner capabilities that offers clients the opportunity to outsource their supply chain, while they continue to focus on innovation and their core competencies."

Viacore's clients include such companies as Amkor, Arrow Electronics, Cisco Systems, The Gap and Qualcomm. Viacore joins a growing list of companies that IBM has acquired in recent years to beef up its BTO capabilities. Other targets of IBM have included PwC Consulting, Daksh eServices, Liberty Insurance Services Corp., Maersk Data, Key MRO, Equitant and Healthlink.

"Viacore's business process integration solutions have helped our customers create dynamic supply chains that deliver significant cost, responsiveness and productivity improvements," said Fadi Chehadé, CEO of Viacore. "We've enjoyed a collaborative sales and marketing relationship with IBM for several years, and our combined efforts will create a stronger value proposition for companies looking to develop a competitive advantage through supply-chain business transformation outsourcing."

IBM's Supply Chain BTO offering address business processes from procurement and logistics to strategy and planning. IBM claims the world's largest supply-chain management consulting practice, with more than 8,000 consultants, who can draw on the experience of Big Blue's own 15,000 internal supply chain staff.

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