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US Bank dumps Sharepoint (to spend more time with Lotus)

Redmond expunged from 5,000 sites

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One of the largest banks in the United States will stop writing checks for Microsoft Sharepoint and standardize on the IBM Lotus platform instead.

US Bank will begin rolling out IBM's collaboration software, Lotus Quickr, and social computing software, Lotus Connections, for all 58,000 employees.

More than 5,000 sites running Microsoft Sharepoint will be converted to Lotus, according to US Bank. Redmond was IBM's rival bidder for handling the bank's social tools.

US Bank will also upgrade all staff systems to Lotus Notes 8.5 - from a mishmash of older versions of Notes and Domino it had accumulated through acquisitions over the years.

Allowing workers to easily create wikis, blogs and other such web 2.0 devices is imperative to keeping everybody up-to-snuff on economic developments and policy changes, the bank says. It intends to have the new Lotus software fully implemented some time in 2010.

US Bank is the sixth largest commercial bank in the US, with $266bn in assets.

Big Blue, meanwhile has set in motion its own internal program to banish Microsoft Office from its halls. It has given its employees ten days to migrate to their Office software to IBM's Lotus Symphony.

IBM is making a major effort to shed the Lotus brand's legacy image in the broader market. While Microsoft's Exchange and SharepPoint dominate, small victories like US Bank could help the company lose years of baggage surrounding the Lotus name. ®

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