IT services giant EDS and Japanese telecom firm NTT Communications have announced a partnership to offer clients IT and communications services in Japan and elsewhere.
The companies are deciding which industries to target and will develop joint packages of IT and telecommunications services, including co-location and hosting.
The partnership could enable NTT to offer more sophisticated hosting services, especially software applications, while EDS gains another partner specialising in telecommunications and network services to complement its relationship with bankrupt WorldCom, said Melanie Posey, an IDC analyst.
IT service providers and telecommunications providers have always partnered, but their collaborations have, traditionally, been ad hoc affairs to serve a specific client in a specific project, Posey said.
Now these companies are, increasingly, creating formal joint agreements to go to market and generate new business together, she said. This makes their relationship more of a business practice and gives the partners additional business opportunities beyond specific clients, which speeds up the sales pipeline.
"They see some advantage in formalising what had traditionally been individual-case ventures to go to market together," Posey said.
Meanwhile the partnership with NTT Com is expected to boost EDS' outsourcing business in Japan, said Kristin Dobrowolski, an EDS spokeswoman. "We see tremendous possibilities for outsourcing in the Japanese market."
EDS, is the world's second-largest provider of IT services, while NTT is a long-distance and data communication subsidiary of Japan's incumbent telco Nippon Telegraph and Telephone (NTT). NTT Com's NTT/Verio group provides Web hosting and IP services, including co-location, Internet access, e-commerce, security and virtual private networking (VPN).