BACKGROUND: Hongkong Bank of Canada (HKBC) is a wholly owned subsidiary of HSBC Holdings plc. Headquartered in the U.K., it is the largest foreign bank in Canada and the seventh largest bank in the country with more than 130 offices in Canada, two in the western U.S. and more than 1 million accounts.

PLATFORMS: The Trillium Software System operates on IBM mainframes, UNIX systems, AS/400 and Windows NT/98/95. Trillium also runs under Java and is a BAPI-certified SAP partner. HKBC uses Trillium running on an IBM AS/400 advanced server model S30, running DB2 for AS/400.

PROBLEM SOLVED: At HKBC, one of the most important business requirements was to consolidate and analyze information from the wide variety of applications and data systems designed for each specific product offering. Being a multinational corporation, HKBC needed a greater understanding of customer relationships, products and distribution channels in order to maintain our competitiveness in the marketplace. We needed to understand total customer profitability. We wanted to understand relationships between different offerings and customers and how they might leverage these in the marketplace. A third-party data cleansing and reengineering technology was needed. To achieve a process that incorporated customer relationship management and the highest quality data possible, Hongkong Bank of Canada chose the Trillium Software System. We now understand "the total present and future value" of each customer to the bank, what services they are utilizing and what services can be target marketing opportunities. HKBC can now extract valuable information in a real-time environment for improved marketplace awareness and internal decision making.

PRODUCT FUNCTIONALITY: The Trillium Software System identifies and matches on the existing customer list as well as identifies new customers. Trillium allows HKBC to cleanse all types of legacy and operational data to create a unified view of our customers, products and suppliers. The Conversion Workbench provides a graphically based suite of tools for data exploration, auditing, transformation and table-based conversions, including the non-name and address data types needed in data warehouses. The Parser, the "context sensitive processor," allows companies to identify, by line type, exactly what is in each field of a record. The Geocoder matches addresses against directories of address-related information such as census codes or geography-based demographics. The geocoding functionality is CASS certified allowing companies to take advantage of all available postal discounts as well as providing the most up-to-data census information. The Matcher enables organizations to accurately identify and develop relationships for individuals, businesses and households. Users can easily define and modify parameters that determine what is considered a match and what criteria are established for surviving match data. Written in "ANSI Standard C," with an open API to their callable functions, Trillium provides easy access and consistency across platforms.

STRENGTHS: Trillium is very robust and easy to use. The tables are tunable which allows for easy configuring of the business rules. It is a worldwide software solution that can process data in several languages.

WEAKNESSES: Trillium is limited to data cleansing, conversion and reengineering capabilities, so it does not provide functions such as extraction and propagation. Trillium has partnered with vendors, such as Informatica Corporation, that do complex extraction and loading.

SELECTION CRITERIA: The Trillium Software System was selected because of its advanced data investigation, cleansing, sophisticated customer consolidation and "householding" capabilities. It was also chosen for its ability to handle data in eight languages, its multitasking capabilities and the vendor's ability to provide test files to evaluate their system.

DELIVERABLES: The customer relationship managers are now able to access complete relationship-wide customer financial information and provide effective investment advice. HKBC's sales campaigns are now focused on customer segments that are most likely to respond and recommendations are presented to the front line for potential cross-selling opportunities.

VENDOR SUPPORT: Trillium provides a professional and dedicated support team with a broad range of experience and expertise. Each question is handled in a considerate and expeditious fashion.

DOCUMENTATION: Trillium's documentation which provides useful support and product information, including technical bulletins, is also available on-line.

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