IBM/Cisco Alliance Supports E-business and Networking

IBM and Cisco Systems Inc. are engaging in a global alliance composed of a $2-billion technology agreement, a strategic relationship with IBM Global Services and Cisco’s acquisition of portions of IBM’s networking intellectual property. Through these agreements, the two companies will deliver a combination of networking solutions, technologies and services to businesses and service providers worldwide.

The strategic alliance between IBM Global Services and Cisco will allow the companies to offer a full spectrum of services and jointly developed solutions for customers' e-business and networking needs. Cisco customers worldwide will also have greater ability to use IBM Global Services to support their Cisco products.

Cisco’s acquisition of the routing and switching intellectual property from IBM's Networking Hardware Division, and the joint development of offerings will provide a smooth transition for customers who implement Cisco networking solutions. IBM will provide ongoing support of its routing and switching products for existing customers, and will continue to offer and support systems network architecture, Token Ring solutions and ethernet adapters through its worldwide sales and distribution channels. Cisco has also agreed to purchase IBM technology over the next five years.

"As customers move from traditional business models to become e-businesses, they need assistance and leadership from their technology providers," says Dr. James Vanderslice, Senior Vice President and Group Executive, IBM Technology Group. "Through this new alliance, we will provide that leadership by combining IBM's strengths in servers, software, services and technology for e-business with Cisco expertise in networking technology."

"The Internet is reshaping the fortunes of all businesses, and we believe this alliance between Cisco and IBM will bring great value to our mutual customers by partnering to migrate them toward New World Internet-based business processes," comments Selby Wellman, Senior Vice President, Interworks Business Division at Cisco Systems.

Companies will now be able to turn to IBM Global Services for all of their Cisco support needs. As part of this support, IBM Global Services will continue to substantially increase its specialists' certified Cisco skills to assist customers worldwide with their network solutions and migrations. IBM Global Services and Cisco will provide service providers and business customers with an expanded set of network solutions to address their e-business requirements, open Internet-based architectures for data, voice and video services, and enterprise management.

IBM Global Services will participate in Cisco's Global Support Partner Program, Gold Partner Certification Program and Cisco Voice Application Partner Specialization which are focused on technology collaboration and cooperative sales and marketing.

To assist customers with a smooth transition to Cisco Internet solutions, the two companies will also establish project offices to identify and handle joint customer opportunities, and establish interoperability labs to test solutions. Portions of this alliance are subject to governmental reviews.

For more information, visit IBM’s Web site at