EDS and NTT to pool IT, network services

EDS and NTT to pool IT, network services

IT services provider, Electronic Data Systems, and Japanese long-distance and Internet service provider, NTT Communications (NTT Com), have announced they are partnering to approach clients in Japan and elsewhere.

The companies were deciding which industry segments to target and developing joint packages of IT and telecommunications services, including colocation and hosting, they said.

EDS, in Plano, Texas, is the world's second-largest provider of IT services, while the Tokyo-based NTT Com is a long-distance and data communication subsidiary of Japan's incumbent telco, Nippon Telegraph and Telephone (NTT). NTT Com's NTT/Verio group provides Web hosting and IP services, including co-location, Internet access, e-commerce, security and virtual private networking (VPN).

The partnership could let NTT Com offer more sophisticated hosting services, especially of software applications, while EDS gained another partner specialising in telecommunications and network services to complement its relationship with bankrupt WorldCom, IDC analyst, Melanie Posey, said.

IT service providers and telecommunications providers hadalways partnered, but their collaborations had traditionally been ad-hoc affairs to serve a specific client in a specific project, Posey said. Now these companies were increasingly creating formal joint agreements to go to market and generate new business together, she said. This made their relationship more of a business practice and gave the partners additional business opportunities beyond specific clients. This sped up the sales pipeline, Posey said.

"They see some advantage in formalising what had traditionally been individual-case ventures to go to market together," she said. Meanwhile, the partnership with NTT Com was expected to boost EDS' outsourcing business in Japan, EDS spokeswoman, Kristin Dobrowolski, said. "We see tremendous possibilities for outsourcing in the Japanese market," she said.

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