Mobile money firm Monitise is transferring its UK professional services staff to IBM as the two firms ramp up their alliance.
Building on an agreement forged between the pair in July, Monitise's entire UK development and integration business (known as Professional Services), including some contractors, is now moving to IBM. Monitise customer contracts, client relationships intellectual property, commitments and delivery remain unchanged.
The deal slashes Monitise's global employee base of around 1000 by just over 20%, helping it to cut costs in its efforts to finally become profitable in full year 2016.
The company also hopes that Big Blue's backing will substantially improve its ability to handle large projects around the world as it looks to meet another target: 200 million users of its technology worldwide by 2018.
Monitise's technology will now be enabled, hosted and sold as an IBM cloud-delivered offering in the business-to-business space, with Big Blue committing its huge sales and specialist resources. And, while the initial focus will be on financial services firms, the partners say that they will also look to win business from mobile network operators, retailers and others.
The deal fits in with Monitise's decision earlier this year to overhaul its business model, ditching big upfront license fees in favour of a subscription-based system designed to cut costs for banks and boost its own long-term annuities.
In the short term, the transition has hit income and in July the firm was forced to cut its full year revenue growth forecast for the second time, sending its share price tumbling. Today's news has given that price a nudge in the other direction, with Monitise shares up six pence, or 14.2%, to 48.25 pence in early afternoon trading.
Alastair Lukies, CEO, Monitise, says: "Our deeper level of collaboration with IBM supports the strategy update we announced in March with our increasing product focus and our ability to scale, both in terms of our delivery capabilities and our global footprint, as well as letting each company focus on its proven market-leading strengths."