In what is believed to be Africa's biggest continuity deal to date, IBM has begun delivery on a 10-year, R570-million contract to provide Absa with business continuity and recovery services. 

The contract was awarded in 2007 and the first of the eight sites was launched on 5 May 2008.
IBM will make round-the-clock dedicated work area recovery facilities in the country’s major commercial centres available to Absa. Should any of Absa’s locations experience disruptions, the bank’s operational staff will be able to relocate to an IBM location where they will continue business as usual.
Absa realises the importance of putting business continuity and recovery systems in place and is aligning its operations accordingly.
Ian Russell, Absa’s chief procurement officer says that the agreement will enable the bank to secure its business operations.
“The agreement with IBM for business continuity and recovery services is crucial for us, not only to comply with regulatory and governance requirements but more importantly to ensure that we safeguard our company’s business operations for the ultimate benefit of our customers.”
IBM recovery locations are on permanent stand-by and fully operational with live connections and office capabilities to enable immediate occupation by Absa at any given time. The recovery facility excludes customer facing, banking transaction and teller services.
Mark Harris, country GM of IBM South Africa, says: “The Absa deal confirms IBM’s market leadership in the business continuity and recovery space in sub-Saharan Africa. Our relationship with Absa has been further strengthened and we were able to tap into IBM’s global expertise, having implemented similar solutions for Barclays globally, Absa’s parent company.”.