Invensys hands IBM £700m outsourcing deal

Invensys, the troubled IT and automation group, has outsourced its IT operations in more than a dozen countries to IBM's Global...

Invensys, the troubled IT and automation group, has outsourced its IT operations in more than a dozen countries to IBM's Global Services Group in a 10-year deal worth £700m.

IBM will provide infrastructure server management, application maintenance, Web hosting, helpdesk and desktop support services for more than 29,000 desktops and more than 2,000 large servers in 400 Invensys sites around the world.

The transition to IBM managed services will begin immediately, said Harry Spellman, an IBM client executive.

Some 600 IT staff from Invensys will be transferred to IBM, with US workers moving across in May and staff elsewhere in June.

The contract follows last week's announcement by travel company Thomas Cook UK of a ten-year, £120m deal with Accenture.

Invensys, which owns the Baan enterprise software brand, decided to outsource its own IT as part of a major company restructuring programme that was announced last month.

IBM will also deploy a team of technology experts from its research organisation to explore ways in which Invensys can better use IT, said Larry Lieberman, a program manager with IBM Research.

An IBM Research team composed of research and consulting experts with industry-specific expertise will work with a similar technical team from Invensys to look at areas where IT may be applied more effectively, Lieberman said.

Such "innovation teams" are fast becoming a standard component of large IBM contracts, Lieberman said.

With other clients these joint efforts have resulted in the prototyping or deployment of new applications such as Web services and supply chain integration systems based on leading-edge technologies, he said.

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