MOSCOW, November 2 (Itar-Tass) - Russia’s savings bank Sberbank and IBM have signed a Memorandum of Strategic Cooperation, aimed at optimising equipment and software supplies, as well as looking at methods to modernise the IT infrastructure of Sberbank.
According to the Memorandum, IBM has decided to change the format of its cooperation with Sberbank until the end of 2013, which will encourage a transition to direct suppliers of equipment and software.
As well as optimising Sberbank’s commercial arrangements with IBM, the signed Memorandum brings the relationship between the two companies to a new level. As part of the agreement, IBM plans to make “Sberbank- Service,” a new subsidiary of Sberbank, an authorised supplier of a wide range of IBM hardware and software. When the process of authorisation of the company is complete, Sberbank will increase the efficiency of procurement (purchasing) IBM products via “Sberbank-Service” directly from the logistics providers of IBM.
According to the Memorandum, Sberbank will have an opportunity to use IBM’s latest technologies, and specialists from both companies will jointly participate in the modernisation programme of the IT infrastructure of the bank.
“Sberbank and IBM have established a mutually beneficial long-term relationship,” Lev Khasis, First Deputy Chairman of the Sberbank Executive Board, said. “The transition to direct contracts with suppliers of equipment and software is one of the key tools of our policy in the field of vendor management. This is now being realised with the help of Michael Ehrenburg, Senior managing IT director for finance and working with partners that has recently joined our team. Because of this, we expect to significantly optimise IT costs while improving the quality of our IT function and customer services”.
“The policy of our company is aimed at maintaining and developing the long-term relationships with the key customers,” Kirill Korniliyev, General Director at IBM Eastern Europe/·sia, said. - To strengthen the position of IBM in the region of Central and Eastern Europe we have made a strategic decision to develop the format of our relationships and to move to long-term partnerships with our key customers. Sberbank, as one of our largest customers in the IT sector in the recent years, has successfully developed its international presence. That is why we are delighted that the bank now has the status of a global partner and is the first to appreciate the benefits of our approach.”
A change in Sberbank’s policy of interaction with IT suppliers and contractors is one of the key priorities in the development of the IT unit for the next five years. In the short term, Sberbank plans to reduce significantly the number of its current vendors and in the medium term - to switch completely to a system of a strategic partnership. As part of the new policy it is expected to attract the representatives of strategic partners not only to decision-making process in the field of IT architecture, but also to the participation in the program “Smart Expenses,” aimed at optimising the expenses of the bank including the IT expenses, Sberbank said.
Sberbank of Russia is the largest bank in Russia and holds almost one third of all Russian banking sector assets. The Central Bank of the Russian Federation is the founder and major shareholder of Sberbank, owning 50 percent of the total share capital plus one voting share. Other shares are held by more than 245,000 individual and institutional investors. The Bank has the largest distribution network in Russia with over 19,000 offices as well as subsidiaries in 20 countries including the CIS, Central and Eastern Europe and Turkey. In September 2012, Sberbank completed the acquisition of DenizBank AS which is ranked 6th among private and 9th among all Turkish banks by consolidated total assets.