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IBM’s Curam Buy Will Enhance Its Smarter Cities Effort

IBM Smarter Planet
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IBM’s Curam Software acquisition will add a social services element to its Smarter Cities strategy

IBM has announced the completion of its acquisition of Curam Software, an Irish software company whose social software will help IBM extend its Smarter Cities strategy.

IBM initially announced its intent to acquire on 5 December and announced the completion of the deal on 20 December. Curam expands IBM’s ability to help cities and governments serve citizens better by adopting more intelligent and efficient ways to assess needs, execute social programmes, and maximise programme results. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Social Programme Cost Cutter

Curam Software is used by health and human services, workforce services, and social security organisations around the world to deliver welfare, social insurance and both individual and employer based social programmes, IBM said.

The Curam Software Social Industry Platform allows government and providers to focus on lowering overall programme costs by ensuring that the benefits and services provided address core issues and that people become more self-sufficient.

Curam, which means “care and protection” in Irish, was founded in 1990 and is based in Dublin, Ireland. One of the company’s investors was Enterprise Ireland, which helps Irish companies achieve global success.

The acquisition builds on IBM’s Smarter Cities initiatives and broadens IBM Ireland’s role, the company said. Last year, IBM opened its first Smarter Cities Technology Centre in Dublin. With the addition of the Curam Research Institute, which is focused on deploying new business models for managing social programmes, IBM will enhance its ability to help clients increase the social and economic potential of people.

Through its Smarter Cities initiative, IBM helps cities and governments serve citizens better by adopting more intelligent and efficient ways to analyse data, anticipate problems and co-ordinate resources, company officials said. IDC Government Insights estimates the new Smarter Cities information technology opportunity at $34 billion (£22bn) in 2011, increasing more than 18 percent per year to $57 billion (£36bn) by 2014.

With the closing of this acquisition, approximately 700 Curam Software employees will join IBM’s Software Group, which is a key driver of growth and profitability for the company, IBM officials said.