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Midas-Kapiti International (MKI), in partnership with IBM India and IndusInd Information Technology Limited (IITL), has announced the launch of an Application Service Provider (ASP) initiative to address the needs of co-operative banks and other small banks in India. Under this partnership, banks will be able to take advantage of MKI’s world-class Equation universal banking solution, which runs on the IBM AS400 platform, on a shared basis. The ASP service will also include value-added applications & services based on the IBM/Lotus’ Domino software suite, enabling banks to utilise current-generation messaging & workflow facilities as part of daily operations.

While pre-marketing of the ASP services has been in progress for some time, the formal Memorandum of Understanding between the three partners was signed on 27th February 2001. Graham Ennis, MKI’s Regional Director said, “This is a highly significant initiative for MKI, as it is the first ASP service based around the company’s Equation banking platform. MKI is committed to providing the most cost-effective solutions to its customers, and this new service will enable India’s banking industry to take advantage of the opportunities offered by an advanced universal banking solution such as Equation. The system has already been implemented at over 900 sites around the world and can provide real-time, on-line support for retail banking operations, fully integrated with corporate and treasury functionality.”

Mr Swarup Chowdhury, Regional Director, IBM, sees the ASP business segment as a key part of IBM India’s service offerings. “Partnering with proven application solution providers such as MKI, and focused service providers like IITL is the way we will offer comprehensive and cost-effective services to our ASP customers”, he said. “The rugged AS400 platform, which is undoubtedly the most widely-used platform for financial services worldwide, is ideally suited for shared application services, given its unmatched stability and scalability.”

“IITL’s clearly defined focus and priority is the introduction and support of shared or hosted solutions based on the ASP model for Banking and e-Commerce and this is only the first step”, said Mr P V Jaishankar, President & CEO, IITL. “In addition to core banking and Domino-based workflow, ASP services will shortly be rolled out with partners for shared ATM services, Internet Banking, Payment Gateways and other services. The ASP model will make a globally-proven solution such as MKI’s Equation even more affordable, enabling smaller banks take advantage of the superior features and facilities offered by the system.”