IBM Innovation Center proves value for Business Partners

July 02 2007

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, 27 June 2007 - IBM Malaysia today reaffirmed their commitment to business partner community in a press session where the company charted its progress and announced new solutions available at the center at the Kuala Lumpur IBM Innovation Center. The center was launched in October last year to help IBM Business Partners in the ASEAN region build innovative, open-standards-based, technology solutions. Located at its head quarters, the center was designed to strengthen its commitment to develop the business partner community in the region.

Since its launch nine months ago, the center has provided partners from Philippines, Thailand Singapore and Malaysia from various industries ranging from banking, insurance, manufacturing and healthcare with the tools and hands-on support. This has helped them to build, enable, port and test their solutions and industrial applications on IBM hardware and software platforms including WebSphere, DB2, Lotus and Rational software. Skilled IBM experts provide consulting expertise for technical issues on hardware and software, at various stages of the development and testing lifecycle.

The center also provides partners with resources to help them accelerate the development of open standards-based and SMB-focused solutions. Access to ready-to-run test environments in secure porting labs and assistance from IBM technical consultants have been enabling Business Partners to concentrate on perfecting their solution and to go to market faster. Part of the services that has been available also includes hands–on workshops and technical seminars to help developers advance their technical skills on key IBM technologies.

“IBM chose to base the center in Kuala Lumpur due to the strong developer base here and in the ASEAN region. Malaysia has excellent IT infrastructure and facilities. The development of a robust, locally developed and price competitive solutions portfolio for our customers across the region is one of our top priorities. The center makes it easy for our partners in and around Malaysia to develop their business applications on our leading edge platforms across the analysis, testing and availability phase of the development cycle. This center is becoming a hub for regional ISVs, developers, systems integrators and resellers in testing their solutions before they hit the market. The center has provided IBM Business Partners with the local support they need to meet client requirements, and also a good platform to work on engagements which are mutually beneficial to both partners and IBM” said Charles Manuel, ISV & Developer Relations, IBM ASEAN/South Asia.

Another unique feature recently launched at the center is the Remote Access Facility. The Virtual Private Network (VPN) service is designed to allow business partners to connect from their office or home office workstations over a secure Internet connection to the facility. This demonstrates the capability of the centre to act as a regional centre providing support to Business Partners remotely in other ASEAN countries. The Virtual Private Network (VPN) enables users to connect to IBM's systems from their office or home-office workstations over the Internet to IBM's porting and testing centers.

The offerings from this service consist of all existing IBM Innovation Centre services such as hands-on support that will help IBM Business Partners to develop and test their solutions on software

middleware platforms, resources to help them accelerate the development of open standards-based solutions and SMB-focused solutions. IBM also offers hands–on workshops and technical seminars to help developers advance their technical skills on key IBM technologies.

"The new capability for remote access to the center can save IBM's business partners thousands of dollars each time they test and validate their products with IBM servers and software. It also reduces time to market with the increased efficiency that speeds up their testing and validation work," added Charles.

This service requires employees from the clients' side to perform their own testing and porting work for the VPN service. They would also need to have a basic understanding of how their enterprises connect to the Internet so that IBM can recommend the correct solution to establish the VPN connectivity to our center. Although business partners will rely less on IBM for direct assistance, support is done remotely via email and phone, and business partner-side logs can be sent to IBM Innovation Center for help in troubleshooting.

“Profitera, being a Premier IBM ISV Partner, has been leveraging the IBM Innovation Center’s facilities, access to deep technical and consulting expertise since its inception, quite extensively. As an ISV, we need to support various software, middleware and hardware combinations for our customers, and the center has been excellent for us. Our applications have to be ported and tested for a variety of enterprise class environments. The center has allowed us to maintain our high performance edge, reduce porting & testing expenditure, while enabling us to go to market more rapidly,” Kesh Mahinder Singh, CEO, Profitera Corporation Sdn. Bhd.

The Company achieved many major technical milestones by using the center. Profitera’s most recent achievement is being awarded the highly acclaimed IBM SOA Specialty Ready certification after successfully completing IBM’s rigorous SOA technical and business compliance assessment with its Profitera PowerMessaging. With this achievement, Profitera’s PowerApps Suite, which is a world class Revenue Collection and Debt Recovery Software, is inline with the IBM SOA Foundation. The PowerApps Suite is targeted to various industries including Banking, Telecom and Government. With the IBM SOA Certification, Profitera PowerMessaging is now validated by IBM’s middleware team to conform to a global Service Oriented Architecture, which can be rapidly deployed with ready made SOA Certified adaptors for on-line host access.

“With the IBM SOA Specialty Ready certification, our customers that will benefit from Profitera PowerMessaging are those seeking to make on-line data accessibility of their host systems, much easier. For example, having the new generation applications like Internet Banking, Wealth Management or Electronic Bill Payment requires very strong on-line and real-time data access. We are now able to provide deep access to such host systems via a message workbench and runtime environment, which leverages on the middleware layer of IBM’s MessageBroker or Enterprise Service Bus (ESB). As such, Profitera PowerMessaging is a first ready made SOA enabled adapter within IBM MessageBroker for rapid message construction and deployment. Other adapter extensions that are in progress are for ISO 8583, CardLink, core banking systems and telecom billing systems” added Kesh.

“Independent solutions vendors (ISVs) like Profitera are an extension of IBM and we value them as part of the IBM family. Although IBM is today the world’s leading and largest IT company, we cannot and do not go to market nor increase our market share alone. Hence, we increasingly depend on our business partners who have the reach and necessary channels to reach out to the market.

Our ISV partners add value to our middleware platforms. In this context, we view them as not only being an extension of the IBM Sales Team; we view them as “value adders” to the end-client. The relationship IBM enjoys with our various ISVs is something we cherish deeply, something we do not take for granted. That is why IBM has chosen not to compete with ISVs – we exited the applications market in 1995. This is unlike other vendors who compete with their partners in the application space,” said Charles.

About IBM Innovation Center, Kuala Lumpur
The Kuala Lumpur IBM Innovation Center is an expansion of IBM’s global Innovation Center strategy to support and develop Business Partners locally. The investment in this centre includes skilled resource, equipment, state-of-the-art facilities and networking amounting to over US$3 million (10million Malaysian Ringgit). The KL Center is the sixth IBM Innovation Center in the Asia Pacific. A key focus for all IBM Innovation Centers is working with IBM Business Partners with easy access to IBM skills and equipment, to help them migrate, test and optimise their applications. The other Asia Pacific IBM Innovation Centers are located in Tokyo, Sydney, Shanghai, Bangalore and Seoul.

About Profitera
Profitera Corporation is an innovative provider of Revenue Collection and Debt Recovery Management Software Solutions. With offices in USA, Singapore and Malaysia, and partners in many countries in Asia, Middle East and Europe, Profitera focuses in providing solutions to help its clients focus on their customers and optimize profits throughout your Revenue & Profitability Lifecycle. As experts in Revenue Collection and Debt Recovery Management, Profitera continuously brings innovative technology solutions to the doorstep of it’s customers to help Reduce Bad Debt and Improve Profitability! The Internet based scalable open architecture of Profitera’s PowerApps solutions leverages on the advance technologies of Java, XML, Rich Internet Application delivery, Rule Engine and Predictive technologies, to bring its customers greater business value.
For more information, please go to www.profitera.com.

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