IBM expands Gold Coast R&D footprint

IBM today announced plans to expand its research and development team on the Gold Coast, adding 34 staff to its operations.

IBM today announced plans to expand its research and development team on the Gold Coast, adding 34 staff to its operations.

"Our Australia Development Laboratory Gold Coast team have world-class expertise in IT security and they play a critical role in the development of IBM's Tivoli security product portfolio," said Glenn Wightwick, IBM Australia's chief technologist and director of the Australia Development Laboratory.

"This expertise and the support of the Gold Coast City Council through their Investment Attraction Program has been critical in securing this new development mission," he added.

Economic Development and Tourism chair councillor Susie Douglas praised IBM's move to expand its footprint, saying that the Gold Coast had a highly talented workforce ready to fit the company's needs.

"IBM's R&D work will aid the development of the city's knowledge-based industry, and help ensure there is an increasing range of employment opportunities for Gold Coasters as we continue to grow into the future," she said.

IBM's relations have, however, not always been so rosy with the council. The company recently had ructions with the body over an enterprise resource planning (ERP) software contract.

Gold Coast City Council has since confirmed to ZDNet Australia that it has canned its enterprise resource planning contract with IBM in favour of rolling the software into an extended deal with SAP.

"The contract with IBM, which was only for ERP program, was terminated for convenience, following a decision to utilise purchased software for a wider suite of functions, including the Property program. At this stage, SAP has been engaged to assist in the design phase of a consolidated ERP/Property program, which is proposed to be completed by the end of 2010," the council said in a statement.

According to the council, the details surrounding the cost of the IBM contract cancellation remain commercial in confidence.

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