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Cheaper At The Core

IBM teams with Indian software developer to replace legacy banking apps
IBM has struck its first strategic alliance with an Indian software company, I-flex Solutions Ltd., to deliver core banking applications to midsize and large banks. IBM will promote I-flex's Flexcube to its global financial-institution customers.

Core banking systems manage deposits, loans, funds transfers, and other day-to-day transactions, and most of them are legacy applications that consume a large chunk of banks' IT budgets. Two-thirds of overall technology spending at the top 45 U.S. banks--target customers for the I-flex system--goes toward maintaining core banking technology, according to a TowerGroup report.

I-flex was developed with Sun Microsystems' Enterprise JavaBeans component software and uses IBM's WebSphere application server as the underlying delivery system. The app will be available in the second half of next year, and its first customers include Syndicate Bank in India and the International Monetary Fund in the United States.