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MONTGOMERY WARD AND EDS ANNOUNCE STRATEGIC INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY ALLIANCE

 MONTGOMERY WARD AND EDS ANNOUNCE STRATEGIC
 INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY ALLIANCE
 CHICAGO, Aug. 13 /PRNewswire/ -- Montgomery Ward & Co., Inc. and EDS Corp. jointly announced today the formation of a strategic alliance with respect to the $5.6 billion retailer's systems development and maintenance efforts.
 EDS' Commercial Services business unit will assume exclusive responsibility for developing, implementing and maintaining a fully integrated set of retail systems applications coordinated by Montgomery Ward management in support of its short and long-term business plans. Functions comprehended by the arrangement include development in the following areas: merchandising, distribution, store systems, financial systems, electronic data interchange, data base and information center, product services, personal computer environment and store support. The computer operations, telecommunications and merchandise services activities will continue as an integral part of Montgomery Ward.
 Under the long-term agreement, EDS, a leading provider of information technology services, will provide the systems development and maintenance services required by the retailer. This affords both organizations the opportunity to leverage EDS' systems organization and expertise. According to Bernard F. Brennan, chairman and chief executive officer of Montgomery Ward, "This alliance is of enormous significance to both organizations. We have jointly developed the prototype for the future in terms of technological development in specialty retailing." This prototype is based on EDS' Retail Enterprise Model (REM). REM provides an integrated set of tools and methodologies to define, execute and manage business change in the retail industry.
 Montgomery Ward has long been a pioneer in the formation of state- of-the-art strategic alliances. In 1988, when management participated in the largest ($3.8 billion) management-led buy-out in U.S. history, Montgomery Ward's credit card operation was sold to GECC, creating the largest strategic venture in retail consumer credit, one which has been highly successful. And, in 1986, Montgomery Ward was the first American retailer to utilize the point-of-sale equipment and programming technology developed by Nixdorf, the wholly owned affiliate of Siemens-Nixdorf. This POS system is now used by such U.S. retail leaders as Nordstrom and Marshall Field's. The alliance with Montgomery Ward represents EDS' first major relationship with a national specialty retail company, although the information technology company provides similar information technology services to many Fortune 500 companies.
 Brennan stated, "Our relationship with EDS will allow us to significantly increase our productivity, which will directly and positively impact on our customer service, our vendor relations and, ultimately, our profitability." All Montgomery Ward associates currently involved in development activities will be offered positions with EDS but will remain physically located at Montgomery Ward's headquarters in Chicago.
 "Montgomery Ward has built a reputation for delivering value and outstanding customer service," said Robert Allen, president of EDS' Commercial Services strategic business unit. "As a technology partner, EDS will enhance Montgomery Ward's competitive advantage with information technology."
 EDs of businesses and governments around the globe. Stock reflecting EDS' performance is traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol GME. EDS reported revenues of $7.1 billion in 1991.
 Montgomery Ward is one of the nation's largest retail merchandising organizations, operating over 350 stores in 39 states. The privately held retailer has achieved record earnings in four of the last five years since its successful leveraged buy-out in 1988.
 -0- 8/13/92
 /CONTACT: Ann Raives of Montgomery Ward, 312-467-7410, or Julie Bartos of EDS, 214-661-6516/ CO: Montgomery Ward & Co., Inc.; EDS Corp. ST: Illinois, Texas IN: REA SU:


CK -- NY043 -- 9603 08/13/92 11:44 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Aug 13, 1992
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