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Management Strategies

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Mellon Financial acquires Unifi Network, a PricewaterhouseCoopers subsidiary; Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce installs a strategic development platform from Eontec; First Bank of Puerto Rico tests Allink Daily Deposit Builder, a CRM analysis tool created by Harte-Hanks Inc.

Mellon Financial Corporation, Pittsburgh, has acquired the human resources outsourcing and consulting businesses of Fort Lee, N.J.-based Unifi Network, a PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) subsidiary.

By combining Unifi with its Buck Consultants and Mellon Employee Benefit Solutions (MEBS) businesses, Mellon becomes the fourth-largest global provider of human resources consulting/administration services and gains a strong foothold in the rapidly growing area of strategic human resources outsourcing.

"This initiative is consistent with our strategy to add businesses and capabilities that enhance our high-growth, high-return fee-based businesses," said Martin G. McGuinn, Mellon chairman and chief executive officer. "With Unifi, we expand our leadership positions and confirm our commitment to Buck's already world-class human resources consulting business. In addition, Unifi's human resources outsourcing expertise is a perfect complement to MEBS, and propels that business to a new level."

The approximately $275 million transaction, which will be an all cash deal, is expected to close early in the first quarter of 2002. Other terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

Unifi was created last year after the 1998 merger of Coopers & Lybrand (C&L) and Price Waterhouse. Unifi also includes professionals from the former Kwasha Lipton, which was purchased by C&L in 1997.


Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC) will install a strategic development platform for its retail banking technology and operations produced by Ireland-based Eontec.

Eontec will work with CIBC to deliver customized multi-channel banking services and consistent customer experience for over six million consumers across the bank's Canadian operations. The five-year agreement encompasses the deployment of Eontec's EJB-based multi-channel architecture (MCA) and an enterprise-wide license for its full product suite.

"CIBC was looking for a framework and a set of banking processes, built on a modern technology," said Linda Dentay, VP and CIO, retail and small business banking, CIBC. "Eontec's platform provides a solid base for banking processes and is a key part of our evolving technology architecture. It will allow CIBC to provide faster, more flexible, reusable solutions for the bank's customers."


First Bank of Puerto Rico has successfully tested Allink Daily Deposit Builder, a CRM analysis tool created by Harte-Hanks Inc., a provider of direct marketing and interactive marketing services.

Allink Daily Deposit Builder is designed to decrease attrition of customer accounts and to increase cross-sell performance for other lines of business offered by a financial marketer. The application analyzes and flags significant and uncharacteristic customer transactions each night or in real time, so bankers can respond immediately to retain and to grow balances.

"Our management philosophy is very focused on results. Making the decision to embark on a CRM strategy required achieving concrete, tangible results," said Maria Cristina Oruna, vice president of CRM and quality for First Bank of Puerto Rico. "Our pilot program with Harte-Hanks allowed us to see the value of a CRM strategy--with results that far exceeded our expectations. This tool provides us with the revenue enhancement potential to far exceed the investment."

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