Armonk, N.Y. - IBM has signed an agreement to acquire Language Analysis Systems Inc. (LAS), a privately held company based in Herndon, Va., that develops multicultural name recognition technology. Financial terms were not disclosed.This acquisition furthers IBM's companywide initiative aimed at helping clients address emerging business challenges and better compete in the global economy through access to accurate, reliable and trustworthy information.
LAS technology enables organizations to increase business insight by enabling a precise, real-time view into the linguistic and cultural properties of names and facilitates a range of solutions, including:
- Combating global money laundering and fraud by helping banks, financial institutions and other organizations better identify and recognize criminals attempting to mask their identity using multiple variations of their name.
- Compliance assurance for insurance providers required to meet government regulations by avoiding new accounts, policy changes and transactions with known criminals.
- Customer recognition for airlines that want to quickly identify duplicate names across multiple reservations and overlapping flight itineraries to better manage passenger capacity and seat availability.
LAS technology verifies the origin, cultural variations and meaning of names by comparing and analyzing factors commonly associated with nearly one billion names from around the world, including nicknames, titles, format changes and typographical errors. Customers tap LAS to safeguard business transactions, increase revenue, enter new markets, reduce risk and avoid potential problems by rapidly analyzing and verifying the names of existing and potential customers, partners and employees.
LAS is the 17th IBM acquisition since 2001 under the company's initiative to help customers access, manage and deliver information more effectively. As with its recent acquisitions of iPhrase, DWL and SRD, IBM's strategy is to apply LAS software in new ways and for new industries. "The global economy is outpacing our clients' ability to keep up with a changing world of customers, competitors and partners, and can impede their ability to capitalize on emerging opportunities, while making them more vulnerable to operational, reputational, and legal risk," says Ambuj Goyal, general manager, information management, IBM. "LAS technology provides a new level of accuracy and assurance to organizations that depend upon access to the right information, in the right context, at the right time."
"We are delighted that IBM will give us the opportunity to extend the reach and impact of LAS technology into many different industries, helping companies make more informed decisions and capitalize on new and emerging business opportunities," says Dr. Jack Hermansen, CEO, LAS.
LAS technology supports IBM's continuing efforts to help clients better manage information and apply it in innovative ways for a competitive business advantage, according to the company. The strategy takes advantage of IBM's software, storage, server, business consulting and research expertise to help customers free up all kinds of data, such as e-mail, Web pages, blogs, podcasts, audio, images and video, regardless of format or structure, and turn them into useful, industry-specific services that perform business functions.
LAS's software portfolio is based on more than 20 years of linguistic research and its capabilities are recognized and endorsed by the U.S. government for both commercial organization and international government agency use. LAS's patented software is currently in use worldwide, supporting a variety of mission-critical applications.
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