The companies will establish one or more joint ventures to provide a range of services up to full outsourcing where they take over a customer's IT assets and staff. A joint marketing team to develop and promote these services will be set up in January.
"As a partner, NEC expects HP to jointly provide consistent outsourcing services from system integration to operation for the global market," said NEC president and chief executive officer Koji Nishigaki at a news conference in Tokyo yesterday, which was also attended by HP chairman and chief executive officer Carly Fiorina.
This alliance provides a way for NEC of Tokyo to compete with companies such as Fujitsu and IBM that are ahead in the outsourcing market, particularly in Japan.
"Since we don't have any experience in the full-scope style outsourcing business, we hope to learn from HP's business model," Nishigaki said.
HP, on the other hand, is already one of the leading outsourcing companies in North America and Europe. The company was awarded a seven-year, $1.5bn contract for the provision of IT services by the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce in September. It has also launched large-scale outsourcing services in China.
Fiorina said the two companies complement each other in the outsourcing arena. "HP focuses on capability, invention and innovation, and NEC brings important capabilities in open mission-critical systems," she said.
The two companies started a product reselling alliance in 1995. This alliance was expanded by forming a new system-based alliance in May this year, when they announced they would collaborate to create a product that includes HP server hardware running NEC's OpenDiosa middleware for running high-availability applications on non-mainframe servers.