Merrill Lynch and Level 8 form middleware alliance

Merrill Lynch and Level 8 form middleware alliance

Merrill Lynch is teaming with Level 8 to deliver e-business integration solutions for global 2000 companies. As part of the alliance, Merrill Lynch is to take a minority equity stake in Level 8.

Under the terms of the agreement the US investment bank will grant Level 8 exclusive worldwide marketing, sales and development rights to Cicero, a desktop computer environment developed by Merrill Lynch and used by more than 30,000 of its staff worldwide. Level 8 will market Cicero as part of its Geneva eBusiness integration product line.

In return, Merrill Lynch will receive an equity stake in Level 8 Systems in the form of one million shares of common stock. The common stock represents approximately seven percent of the total outstanding shares of Level 8 Systems common stock. In addition, Merrill Lynch will have a seat on the Level 8 board of directors.

Level 8 plans to extend the Cicero technology to a multi-platform environment to enable plug-and-play integration across disparate hardware, communications protocols and networks.

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