HP trumpets services unit with CIBC deal

Underscoring its commitment to the managed services business, Hewlett-Packard Co. last month announced it has signed a seven-year, US$1.5 billion outsourcing contract with Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC) and has acquired full ownership of Intria-HP, an IT outsourcing joint venture it launched with the financial services firm in 1998.

The assets of Intria-HP Corp. will be rolled into the HP Services business unit, greatly enhancing its managed services capabilities, said Ann Livermore, executive vice-president of HP Services. HP will acquire some 1,300 IT professionals with financial services expertise, as well as 440,000 square feet of data centre space in two redundant data centres in Toronto.

“The acquisition of I-HP dramatically expands our outsourcing services capabilities here in North America,” Livermore said during a conference call with reporters. “It certainly strengthens our multi-technology capabilities and also our expertise in the financial services industry.”

Terms of the Intria-HP acquisition were not released.

The outsourcing contract is the largest in HP’s history and makes CIBC HP’s largest managed services client, Livermore says. The deal calls for HP to manage CIBC infrastructure, including desktop PCs, IT systems and software from multiple vendors, including Hewlett-Packard Co., IBM Corp., Sun Microsystems Inc. and Microsoft Corp., Livermore says.

The deals signal HP’s efforts to expand its services repertoire beyond HP technology in order to more aggressively compete with outsourcers such as IBM Corp. and Electronic Data Systems Corp. Livermore says users can expect to see HP continue to bring on a wide array of technology expertise through further acquisitions and joint ventures.

“As a large services player we need to deal with whatever is in our customers’ environment – and as much as we’d like it all to be HP technology, there are very few customers who have technology just from one company,” Livermore says. “So we need to…be able to address whatever they may have in their environments.”