Special Correspondent

Services will be rendered in banking domain

CHENNAI: In a move that could provide a clue or two to the shape of things to come, the BPO (business process outsourcing) arm of Standard Chartered Bank of the U.K., Scope International, has initialled a knowledge partnership agreement with Cambridge Integrated Services, a BPO unit of Scandent Solution Corporation Ltd.

Under a memorandum of understanding (MoU) signed here on Thursday, Scope will offer its expertise in the banking domain to Cambridge on a consultancy basis. This will help Cambridge to undertake a range of services in transaction processing for its banking clients.

The agreement is initially for a three-year period and will cover markets such as the U.S., Europe and Australia.

Currently, Scope has been functioning as an in-house back-office entity for Stanchart. According to Jaspan Bindra, General Manager (South Asia), Standard Chartered, Scope processes 80 million transactions a year and has a workforce of 12,000 with 4,000 people in shared service alone. To a question at a press conference here, Mr. Bindra agreed that the scope of the current agreement could expand into a financial partnership should the business logic demanded.

It is stated that Cambridge will directly interface with its customers and be responsible for all service level agreements (SLAs) and statements of work (SOW). Further, Cambridge will provide the sales and delivery engines.

A release from the bank said that during the first phase, Scope would provide infrastructure for about 350 seats, raising this to 1,000-1,500 in the medium-term. "Cambridge will leverage its entire sales and marketing collectively to drive this business forward," said Satyen Patel, Executive Vice-Chairman of Scandent Solutions.