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What will IBM UK do in the systems integration field? has been an oft-asked question since the company started forming joint venture companies with systems houses on the continent to address the increasingly sought-after business of implementation of large-scale systems with equipment from a number of vendors. In fact, the UK company made a move as long ago as 1986, although it didn’t make much noise about it, and its Systems Integration initiative now has bases at several of the major IBM UK locations – Basingstoke, London, Warwick, Manchester and Scotland – and is looking for project managers; system architects with a thorough knowledge of IBM products; and systems designers with experience in Unix implementation, databases or locally networked personal computers. IBM UK says that there are no plans for joint ventures in the field, pointing out that because alien kit is involved, every project is effectively a joint venture. Nevertheless there are still many who expect IBM to cut a formal deal on systems integration with one of the major UK systems houses, such as Logica Plc, Sema Group Plc or SD-Scicon Plc.

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