BEIJING Aug 26 Industrial and Commercial Bank
of China (ICBC) has deployed a new IBM
mainframe computer system that reduces downtime and will
continue to buy equipment from IBM, the two companies said
IBM's joint announcement with ICBC, the world's largest bank
by market capitalization, is an effort to signal IBM's ongoing
business with China's state-owned banks and comes several months
after widely circulated media reports suggested China's central
government had ordered banks to remove IBM equipment due to
Seeking to recover from the public relations hit, IBM has
announced in recent weeks a string of deals in China to assure
investors of its future in the market as well as salvage its
reputation with potential Chinese buyers.
In a statement released only in Chinese, ICBC chief
technology officer Lin Xiaoxuan said ICBC "beginning 30 years
ago was the first bank in mainland China to introduce IBM
mainframes, which have since played an important role in our IT
"IBM mainframes have consistently helped us keep our IT
systems steady and safe and will continue to do so in the
future," Lin said.
ICBC's newly deployed mainframe, which was purchased from
IBM several months ago, allows sensitive financial data to be
routed around the world in the event of a crash at one of its 40
IBM Greater China Chief D.C. Chien told state-run China
Daily newspaper in a recent interview that local banks have
continued to purchase its products.
IBM additionally announced this week that it would team up
with China Telecom to provide cloud computing services
to small and medium-sized businesses.
Before the most recent public relations push, IBM said in
April that sales in China had fallen by 20 percent, echoing
disappointing results from many U.S. technology companies which
saw their sales in China plummet following revelations by Edward
Snowden of extensive U.S. government spying.
In an unexpected development, Inspur, a Chinese rival to IBM
that marketed itself as a more secure option for Chinese banks,
announced this week it will sell its high-end K1 server system
with IBM's database and web application software installed.
(Reporting by Gerry Shih; Editing by Matt Driskill)