January 07, 2003

Harris Bank, the U.S. subsidiary of Bank of Montreal, has tapped Mercator Software, an enterprise integration software vendor, to enhance SAP/ERP system compatibility between the bank and its corporate customers-users of the $156 billion bank's electronic data interchange (EDI) service, wire transfer services, and other cash management products.

"We chose Mercator because of its experience integrating software solutions with major enterprise systems and the widespread use of its mapping development software across many industries, including the financial services market," said Greg Makowski, senior product manager at Chicago-based Harris Bank.

"Mercator technology will enable Harris Bank to address the future needs of our clients by enhancing our products," he added.

Harris Bank's cash management unit initiates EDI payments, and receives and records payment information for the bank's corporate customers. It also processes payments for customers and electronically sends payment notification and remittance details.

EDI allows large businesses to quickly and securely transfer large sums of money, accompanied by full invoice information and other payment details. Until now, however, in order to use the EDI service, clients first had to invest in their own IT infrastructure so they could translate ERP files into an EDI-readable format.

By using Mercator integration technology in conjunction with Harris' existing EDI system, clients will be able to send data to Harris directly from their ERP system. The bank will then perform the file translation on their behalf.

Additionally, Harris Bank will deploy the Mercator ISO 15022 Messaging Solution in its wire transfer area to facilitate SWIFT connectivity.

For Harris Bank, the advantages of using Mercator integration solutions include improved service to clients through easier, less costly ERP integration, the ability to leverage existing capabilities of cash management products that process files in customized formats, and integration with SAP enterprise applications for electronic payables, receivables and ancillary cash management products.