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Mellon Service Removes Paper Obstacles for Custody Clients; More Than 100 Are Online

A new Mellon Trust online service has eliminated bulky, voluminous paper statements for global custody clients.

A new Mellon Trust online service has eliminated bulky, voluminous paper statements for global custody clients.

Called Mellon Online Reporting, the service enables clients to view financial statements and investment portfolio information, all audited by Mellon,via the Internet in real-time.

"We used to run reports, many of them as long as 25 pages, several times throughout the day," said Eric Leech, vice president of information management and system support at Pittsburgh-based Mellon Trust, a division of Mellon Bank.

"We would mail, overnight ship, and in some cases fax these reports to clients, and often we did not have a quick turnaround."

Global custody clients comprise a big chunk of Mellon's assets. "We need to provide information to our clients-the agents who are running the business and corporate portfolios," Leech said.

"As a result, they need information. And that is why their access needs to be better, faster and sharper."

"While the cost savings are nice, this service is really a value to the customer," he added.

"The main benefit and reaction we are getting is the quick turnaround. Even if a report is 25 pages, they will see it the same day-not within a few days as with the previous system."

Clients are alerted to newly available data through a telephone call or e-mail. By clicking on a dedicated icon at Mellon's Web site, clients enter a protected site to view data.

The site, which was rolled out in July following beta testing during the first quarter of 2000, has attracted more than 100 clients.

By making the reports electronic, Mellon has slashed processing time by 24 to 48 hours, and eliminated costs associated with printing and storage of paper documents.

Instead of storing articles or transfer statements onto microfiche, the bank archives them onto CD-ROMs and image-based jukeboxes, Leech explained. All documents can be stored up to seven years.

The service is part of Mellon's commitment to e-commerce, a strategy that pushes the bank to use the Internet in new ways that will in turn help its customers better transact business. "Our e-commerce strategy, which launched in May, shows the most urgent use of e-commerce is to drive opportunities and benefits of the Internet through our existing business," said Janey Place, executive vice president of e-commerce strategy at Mellon.

"At the same time, it is important for us to get into new business and have labs in-house to develop new ideas."

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