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Microsoft and Agree Technology Announce SuperTeller for Next-Generation Branch Transformation

Microsoft and Agree Technology announce SuperTeller for next-generation branch transformation; Xiamen International Bank first to adopt innovative new solution to optimize branch efficiency.

Responding to the needs of the growing Chinese banking industry " where customers still prefer the branch as the primary channel for transacting banking services "Microsoft Corp. (Redmond, Wash.) and Agree Technology (Zhuhai City, Guangdong Province, China), a professional financial services solution provider to the Chinese banking industry, introduced SuperTeller, which the partners are describing as a next-generation branch solution based on Microsoft .NET. Based on the development capabilities of Microsoft .NET, particularly utilizing Windows Presentation Foundation, Windows Communication Foundation and Windows Workflow Foundation, SuperTeller was developed by Agree Technology in collaboration with Microsoft.

The front-end branch solution is designed to help financial institutions become more customer-centric and optimize efficiency, while managing risk and reducing costs to remain competitive. The solution has been adopted by Xiamen International Bank (Xiamen City, Fujian Province, China), which is implementing a new branch system based on SuperTeller.

According to Wang Yuhui, CEO, Agree Technology, "SuperTeller will initially be available in China, directly answering a need in the domestic market. Other Asian banks, and international banks, are also today facing similar challenges, and the long-term view is that SuperTeller will be available to financial institutions globally." Similarly, he reports, Microsoft initially will support Agree Technology in the Chinese market, "with a view to rolling SuperTeller out into other Asian markets and globally."

The SuperTeller solution provides a user-friendly front-end and supporting all line-of-business applications at the branch level. This gives branch staff faster and easier access to customer information as and when required, and helps eliminate data redundancy by providing centralized control. It helps branch-focused financial institutions move away from character terminals to a more advanced human-computer interface, driving greater teller efficiency and providing the basis for a more innovative technology infrastructure, according to the vendors.

Describing the current state of channel strategies among Chinese financial institutions, Wang explains: "Intra-industry competition in the future will come from channel construction with bank channels, including self-help equipment, Internet banking, call center and branch. Of this, branch takes 70 percent of the focus for Chinese banks. Currently, banks face obstacles when looking at branch renewal, as current teller systems are not able to provide the functionality or flexibility needed to keep up with customer needs and the changing landscape."

"As a leading financial institution, Xiamen International Bank recognizes that innovative technology can help us provide a better service to our customers, and set us apart from the competition," said Xin Lin, vice general manager of IT department, Xiamen International Bank, in a statement. "The wide range of functions provided by SuperTeller will enable us to take advantage of more efficient cash management and teller management, allowing us to improve development efficiency, provide flexible pricing, reduce complexity and control risk. We are very pleased with the richness and ease of development on Microsoft .NET, and will look at extending the capabilities to our Internet banking and self-service channels in the future."

"Today's announcement with Agree Technology reflects how Microsoft is delivering the latest solutions and tools to help banks quickly adapt to new customer needs — strengthening the overall connected customer experience and improving the bottom line," said Susan Hauser, vice president, Worldwide Financial Services, Microsoft, in a statement.

Katherine Burger is Editorial Director of Bank Systems & Technology and Insurance & Technology, members of UBM TechWeb's InformationWeek Financial Services. She assumed leadership of Bank Systems & Technology in 2003 and of Insurance & Technology in 1991. In addition to ... View Full Bio

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