Companies across Europe tap IBM Services for digital transformation

By: Bart Van Den Daele

Clients from across almost every industry in Europe are taking advantage of IBM Services to tap into cognitive market opportunities and access cutting-edge technology and skills. In doing so, they’re improving security and flexibility, driving growth and better responding to today’s fast-moving economic environment.

With rapidly changing needs and accelerating business cycles, organizations look for consistent and reliable service delivery across a supply chain of services from multiple vendors. For the IT services industry, this means shifting from system integration to services integration. Businesses and government agencies around Europe are adopting services integration to allow them to integrate diverse workloads and platforms, improve business processes and capabilities, ensure greater data protection and security, reinforce relationships with clients and take advantage of new market opportunities.

Invest in cognitive

Last year, IBM announced several major deals as part of a move by key European industry leaders to benefit from recent advances in cloud and cognitive technologies through IBM services and expertise. The agreements with a combined value of well over $2B include several leading financial institutions such as UK’s HSBC, Spain’s BBVA, Denmark’s Danske Bank, Switzerland’s Banque Cantonale Vaudoise and the Bank of Cyprus.

Advanced services are helping to drive a wave of innovation across leading European industries. Connecting cognitive capabilities with vast amounts of data and cloud infrastructure enables organizations to achieve breakthroughs such as detecting and resolving cyberattacks and handling potential outages before they happen. These services underpin major digital transformations and improve the way organizations serve clients.

For example, key financial institutions, industrial service providers, oil and gas conglomerates and other industry players gain a competitive edge over rivals when they embrace this new business model developed by IBM, which provides an integrated services delivery approach to the modern multi-vendor IT environment.

Tap into cognitive business opportunities

The State Oil Company of the Azerbaijan Republic (SOCAR) and IBM announced they will work together to accelerate digital transformation processes in the energy industry and across sectors. A SOCAR-IBM joint venture called Caspian Innovation Center LLC has been established to provide IT, business transformation and business consulting services in Azerbaijan, the Caspian region and other countries. This strategic partnership will engage SOCAR’s industry expertise and IBM’s digital, cognitive computing and data science capabilities in building differentiated industry solutions and competencies in the region.

Working with IBM, HSBC has developed a new technology to help automate and simplify how they process millions of documents used daily in international commerce. Taking advantage of IBM’s new Watson-based services platform, IBM and Danske Bank signed a 10-year IT infrastructure services contract leveraging the platform to develop and implement a cognitive delivery platform. It will allow Danske to easily integrate existing systems and can be further used to develop and deploy new financial services. Danske Bank’s use of the platform will help ensure uninterrupted banking operations and a significant decrease in the number of incidents impacting business critical applications and end users.

Design for digital transformation

Golden Sand Bank and IBM in Poland have recently announced that the financial institution is working with IBM to build an end-to-end digital bank through complex financial services available remotely. By using IBM Bank in a Box service, IBM and Golden Sand Bank expect to provide a core banking system, a multifunctional front-end and a fully digital business process management to its clients. All of the services provided by IBM are secure and scalable. IBM’s Bank in a Box fulfills all requirements imposed on banks by national regulators as well as by the EU.

Spain’s BBVA is stepping up its digital transformation process. The Group has signed a services agreement with IBM for the operation and optimization of BBVA’s current technological infrastructure. The agreement allows the Group to advance its cloud computing strategy through the optimization and transformation of its current infrastructure.

Bank of Cyprus is committed to implementing a modernization agenda designed to transform its business model to ensure that it can compete efficiently and better serve the needs of its customers. The bank selected IBM as a strategic partner to drive its digital transformation. It will utilize IBM iX capabilities to launch a large-scale redesign and will leverage IBM’s expertise to implement an enterprise-wide process re-engineering program. By partnering with IBM and taping IBM’s proven expertise, Bank of Cyprus intends to adapt its business to emphasize an ever increasingly digital world where customer service and product excellence are essential to competitive advantage.

ActivTrades is a leading UK online broker that has already migrated its trading platform to the IBM Cloud. The new IBM Cloud-based platform helps their clients to use stable trading services and make faster trading decisions. Because it is an open, scalable and flexible platform, ActivTrades could seamlessly migrate MetaTrader 4, MetaTrader 5 and its proprietary platform ActivTrader to the new working environment. As a result, they’re now able to deploy new services within days and execute transactions significantly faster than with the previous system.

Drive greater security

SEA, a leading Italian airports operator that manages Northern Italy’s main airports, has engaged IBM in a seven-year service agreement to consolidate and manage its IT infrastructure on a hybrid IT environment that integrates the IBM Cloud.

CMA CGM Group, a world leader in container shipping signed IBM for a new seven-year extension of their existing services agreement. IBM will implement and manage a flexible cloud platform based on the IBM Cloud. The agreement also covers data center, integration and production services, network security management.

IBM and Banque Cantonale Vaudoise, one of Switzerland’s largest banks, announced a multimillion-dollar extension of their existing services agreement until the end of 2020. IBM will continue to provide technology and managed application hosting services, with the aim to streamline, secure and standardize BCV’s IT infrastructure and processes.

IBM Services offers end-to-end IT consulting and business services supported by an unparalleled global delivery network transforming its business to lead in an era of cognitive and cloud. As a cloud services integrator, IBM Services is managing the services and underlying infrastructure in an integrated and unified way. It is modernizing clients’ IT environments to help them meet the increasingly complex customer demands. It provides clients with innovative technology solutions that help them to improve their business processes and drive profitability.

To learn more, contact Svetlana Stavreva at

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About The Author

Bart Van Den Daele

General Manager, Global Technology Services, IBM Europe

Bart Van den Daele is the General Manager for IBM Global Technology Services in Europe, covering more than 50 countries and helping clients tap into new cognitive business opportunities by rolling out transformational digital services and automating processes. He is responsible for a portfolio of services, including Mobility, Resiliency, Systems and Networking service lines, as... Read more