ROME, - 20 May 2010: A new wave of clients and business partners in industries such as healthcare, energy and financial markets have made the switch from competitive platforms to IBM DB2 database software to meet data intensive demands of their businesses. To further accelerate this momentum, IBM (NYSE: IBM ) announced today a new feature that allows clients to more easily move their applications written for Sybase ASE to DB2 - adding to the support for Oracle Database applications introduced last year.
Clients such as BJC Healthcare and Pep Boys are already testing the feature to move their industry applications from Sybase ASE to DB2 to help reduce IT costs and achieve overall better performance.
Additionally, in just the past 12 months, more than 500 partners including Synopsis SA, Perficient, Inc. and Odyssey Financial Technologies Inc. have adopted or migrated to DB2 due to its ease of use, lower costs and greater ROI for their clients.
Current economic conditions are driving companies to consolidate and standardize their IT environments with lower cost, energy-efficient, more scalable infrastructure. Companies in all industries can have up to thousands of applications and dozens of database management systems that need to interact with one another, that are either purchased or received through an acquisition. These systems create redundant hardware, software, administration -- increasing IT costs.
Since the release of DB2 9.7, a growing number of clients have moved their applications from Oracle Database to DB2, in some instances, in a matter of days, to gain more efficiencies and reduce costs associated with managing their IT infrastructure. They have benefited from unique DB2 innovations such as pureScale  running on IBM Power Systems, that helps clients increase their database transaction capacity while reducing the risk and cost of growing their IT systems.
For clients moving applications from Sybase ASE, this new SQL Skin feature makes DB2 the best choice for quickly reducing their operational costs so they can invest more on growing their business through strategic initiatives such as analytics. This fully integrated capability was jointly developed with ANTS software Inc. (OTC Bulletin Board: ANTS), a leading provider of database migration solutions. This development began more than two years ago and early adopter clients have participated in a beta program since late 2009.
"We understand the pressures clients face to increase the overall performance of their organizations to streamline their processes while also reducing costs," said Arvind Krishna, General Manager, IBM Information Management. "Our continued investment in developing innovative technologies such as the new SQL Skin is a clear demonstration of our commitment to helping clients meet these challenges."
"We are proud of this partnership with IBM," said Joseph Kozak, Chairman and CEO, ANTS software Inc. "IBM's global reach and support coupled with the unmatched technology and cost advantages delivered by ANTS innovations creates a powerful new offering for global enterprises. In large financial services and telecommunications markets, where cost savings is a major priority, the value of quickly moving to DB2 can be compelling for companies focused on reducing costs."
BJC Healthcare & Pep Boys Move Industry Applications Seamlessly
BJC HealthCare plays a key role in medical research for cancer, heart disease, diabetes as well as other diseases and the success of medical research is dependent on handling information about a large population of patients participating in clinical trials. A reliable and cost effective IT infrastructure that can handle a massive amount of data is critical for BJC to identify the appropriate candidates and track their progress -- further advancing the efforts to improve patient care.
"We are eager to eliminate unnecessary costs by reducing the level of complexity our IT staff need to support," said Tom Holdener, Lead Architect at BJC HealthCare. "The new DB2 SQL Skin feature allows us to migrate two proprietary applications - clinical results viewing and a business intelligence application - from Sybase ASE to DB2 with virtually no changes, drastically reducing the time to a matter of weeks instead of months. In addition to lowering our database license and maintenance costs, we can also take advantage of advanced DB2 features such as deep compression to further reduce storage-related costs. This seamless migration allows us to shift our time and resources to ensure the information of BJC's patients is maintained with the highest standards of quality."
US-based Pep Boys, the leading automotive aftermarket service and retail chain, with more than 580 stores located in 35 states and Puerto Rico recently started to look at consolidating their database systems to help reduce administration costs. As a part of the beta program, Pep Boys was able to complete a successful proof of concept by moving their special order parts application from Sybase ASE to DB2 in a matter of weeks.
"I'm excited about the possibility of IBM's compatibility features for DB2 to make it easier for Pep Boys to increase efficiencies and more effectively manage inventory across multiple suppliers," said Jim Ofalt, Systems Manager at The Pep Boys Manny, Moe & Jack. "What we saw in the beta was a seamless move to DB2 requiring no changes to the application. This is really important as we would not want to disrupt our business by changing application behavior. In addition, Pep Boys has several applications they are evaluating for a move to DB2 to help eliminate increasing maintenance fees."
Other global clients such as fashion e-retailer Faith Industry and ABSA Bank are turning to DB2 from other competitive database vendors to meet today's business challenges.
Italy's Faith Industry Moves from Oracle Database to DB2
Faith Industry based in Isernia, Italy recently turned to DB2 to support their catalogue of men's, women's and children's wear. The e-retailer featuring designers such as Rero Design, Johnny Faith and Alta Sartoria Molisana needed a more robust and reliable database platform that could support all the Web marketing activities to help potential customers find the site and support the increasing amount of content such as text and images to videos, catalogue cards, and news. As part of the project, one of the first significant steps was the company's migration from Oracle Database to DB2 with the collaboration of business partner OneCube.
"The exceptional performance of IBM DB2, and portability from Oracle Database, has allowed us to execute the migration seamlessly while building on existing IT investments," said Arianna Perna, owner of Faith Industry. "We have also been able to achieve up to 75 percent reduction of space needed for data moved from Oracle Database. Now we have a system that is optimized for tracking insight on our customers to better understand their buying patterns."
South Africa's ABSA Bank chooses DB2 to address the most sophisticated information management challenges
ABSA Bank is one of South Africa's largest financial services organizations, serving private, retail and corporate customers. According to Jaco de Jager, SAP Application Architect, ABSA Bank wanted to align themselves more closely to the SAP development strategy to reduce storage and licensing costs, provide increased performance while remaining competitive in the marketplace. IBM's strong partnership with SAP was the main reason for ABSA turning to IBM. As more and more consumers are using their mobile devices for their banking needs, there is a greater volume of data being generated every day. Having a DB2 database platform with unique features such as deep compression, can help ABSA save millions of dollars on storage and licensing costs and reducing its storage requirements by up to 60 percent.
DB2 SQL Skin for Sybase ASE applications is available May 28.
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For more information on ANTS software Inc, visit http://www.ants.com/ .