IBM opens Singapore service innovation center

Big Blue partners Infocomm Development Authority to set up facility to drive local creation of innovative products and services.
Written by Liau Yun Qing, Contributor

SINGAPORE--IBM has opened a new facility here that aims to provide a platform for local businesses to leverage the vendor's technology to create new products and services.

Dubbed "The Innovation Place", the facility is the result of a collaboration with Singapore's ICT regulator the Infocomm Development Authority (IDA), said company executives during the launch Tuesday. This is the third of IDA's Next-Gen Innovation Centres (NGICs). The first two centers are Cisco Systems' Enabling Platform Innovation Centre, which was set up in 2008, and Oracle's Enterprise Fusion Innovation Centre, which was launched in 2009.

In her opening speech, Teresa Lim, managing director of IBM Singapore, said the new facility will offer a series of workshops, businesses consultations and plans tailored for both large enterprises as well as small and midsize businesses (SMBs) in the country.

Lim added that the center aims to develop "T-shaped professionals" who have deep proficiency in one area and a breadth of multidisciplinary skills. This can be achieved through an academic discipline IBM calls Service Science, Management, and Engineering (SSME).

Speaking at the launch, IDA CEO Ronnie Tay said by collaborating with IBM, the government agency hopes to enable more companies to access development environments to quickly build, test and deploy innovative next-generation services for businesses and consumers.

"With the high bandwidth and competitive pricing that comes with [Singapore's] next-generation national broadband network (NBN), there is much potential for local service providers to create new and innovative services," Tay said. He added that the NBN is expected to be available across the island by June 2012.

The broadband network will provide speeds of up to 1Gbps (Gigabits per second) to homes and organizations, providing significant competitive advantage to enterprises here as most rely on infocomm for their business, he added.

Anthony Steel, IBM's Asean managing partner of global business services, said consultants and experts at The Innovation Place will lead companies through a series of workshops to help enterprises transform and gain higher productivity through innovative business models, products and services.

Retail services, for instance, is a key target sector for the new center. According to IBM, the center will help companies in this vertical industry use Big Blue's offerings in advanced analytics and business intelligence to "solve business problems" and build technology proof-of-concepts.

Lim Teck Ch'ang, associate partner of IBM's global business services, told ZDNet Asia the facility is immediately available to IBM clients and the company is currently exploring ways to promote the facility among non-IBM clients.

Editorial standards