Esat BT lands telco deal with Bank of Ireland

14 Jul 2003

Esat BT has struck a €23m a year deal with Bank of Ireland to provide telecoms services as part of the bank’s strategy to outsource all of its IT and communications needs, it has emerged. It is understood that the deal will boost revenues at Ireland’s second largest telco by €160m over the next seven years.

It is understood that Esat BT beat off considerable competition from Eircom for the contract. Under the terms of the deal, 15 Bank of Ireland staff will join Esat BT. Although the contract has yet to be signed, it is understood that the €23m a year deal will boost Esat BT’s annual revenues by 9pc.

Over the past year, Bank of Ireland has been driving to outsource all of its IT and telecoms needs, culminating in a major US$600m IT outsourcing contract with Hewlett-Packard. That contract is the subject of a major industrial relations dispute between the bank and the Irish Bank Officials Association (IBOA) as it will necessitate the transfer of around 500 Bank of Ireland workers, North and South, to Hewlett-Packard’s workforce. Strike action has been planned for 23 July.

According to reports over the weekend, Esat BT’s UK parent played a considerable role in securing the deal and represents a major business drive by the telco to secure corporate infrastructure contracts.

The company is also understood to have recently signed a €100m contract to build the first phase of Hutchison’s 3G mobile phone network in Ireland.

By John Kennedy