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IBM officially opened its new Costa Rica Delivery Center, in America Free Zone, Heredia. IBM will invest US$300 million over 10 years, and intends to employ up to 1,000 people by 2014. The new center will provide high-value services for clients around the world, reaffirming Costa Rica’s position as a strategic services hub for IBM. The facility will support clients in the areas of IT security, data storage, business analytics, cloud computing, and other services in demand by IBM clients.

The new center will provide cloud infrastructure support and management, to help clients simplify and enhance operational efficiency. Cloud computing provides clients with the ability to reduce their IT infrastructure costs, have a standardized, virtualized platform, and enhance their process automation. Additionally, the center will provide technology capabilities that can anticipate and help prevent fraud and IT hacker attempts.  

IBM IT experts will support global clients with service management, data storage services, automating data backup and providing support for a variety of storage platforms and tools. Business analytics capabilities will help clients analyze complex data and enable smarter decision-making.  

“With IBM’s state-of-the-art facilities, thousands of Costa Ricans will be able to showcase their talent, pushing Costa Rica further down the path of innovation, knowledge and technology; a path that we have bravely undertaken with courage and commitment, but most of all, with great confidence in the talent of our people,” said Costa Rica President Laura Chinchilla.  

“This partnership between IBM and Costa Rica, as we engage in this adventure towards a more modern and technological world, is essential to our country. It becomes our driving force while reminding us of the important challenges that lie ahead,” added President Chinchilla. 

IBM has services professionals in more than 170 countries with the industry’s largest number of infrastructure experts. The center in Costa Rica opens new opportunities for IBM clients in Latin America. With this center, IBM expands the local services operations it has been delivering since 2004, in the areas of human resources processes, call center, finance and administration, and shared services. 

“This opening is very important for IBM, as our global services are a key differentiator from our competitors,” said Patt Romero Cronin, General Manager, IBM Global Technology Delivery. “The cloud computing capabilities of the new center, combined with cloud-based support provided by IBM from the United States, India and China, are important to our clients.” 

“The IT services that IBM will deliver from Costa Rica require complete fluency in new and innovative technologies, which will bring along a significant technology transfer and will allow us to strengthen and scale our participation in global chains of high-value technology,” said Anabel González, Costa Rica Foreign Trade Minister. 

IBM Collaborates with the Costa Rican Education System

IBM also announced that it is pursuing efforts to build skills in Costa Rica. IBM is working jointly with the public and private universities, Costa Rica Investment Promotion Agency (CINDE) and the government. The aim is to provide academia with technology, knowledge and access to specialized software to improve training and education, and to strengthen the curricula of IT programs around four main themes: cyber security, cloud computing, data storage and business analytics. The purpose of the IBM University Program is to provide students with new information technology skills that are in high demand in Costa Rica.  

“The Ministry of Science and Technology is fully committed to aligning academia and the IT industry for development in strategic areas such as digital technology,” said Alejandro Cruz, Costa Rica Minister of Science and Technology. “The articulation between academia and industry will provide the opportunity to improve technical and higher education in more advanced skills of computing science and technology. This initiative, I am sure, will have full support from the main public and private educational institutions, which will allow our human capital to strengthen the competitiveness of Costa Rica for its future development.” 

“Strengthening our skills and access to new technologies, such as the ones used by IBM, will improve the country’s competitiveness as a location for foreign direct investment,” said Gabriela Llobet, CINDE Director General. “It will portray our country as more innovative and open to learning new technologies, setting us apart from our regional competitors and raising us up to the highest level worldwide.” 

IBM will offer access to IBM tools and technologies, courseware and IT education with the development of professor modules over the coming months. The company intends to develop knowledge, promote innovation and train skillful IT professionals to ensure a pipeline of innovative talent.  

“The IBM University Program is aimed at meeting the needs that arise from the rapidly changing and complex world of information technology,” said James Rutledge, IBM Vice President, Latin America Global Delivery and Costa Rica Site. “Our mission is to work jointly with faculties to improve and increase the competitive IT workforce in Costa Rica in line with our goal to develop new skills for the twenty-first century and a Smarter Planet.”