Application Development Trends Honors Fireman’s Fund for WebSphere

July 6, 2001

IBM announced that Fireman’s Fund Insurance Company was recognized at the Application Development Trends 2001 Innovator Awards for its AgriWare Application, running on IBM’s WebSphere e-infrastructure software. AgriWare is a web-based administration and policy processing system that simplifies tasks and ensures each agent can access the same databases, allowing Fireman’s Fund to streamline the entire insurance process and support superior levels of service to farmers.

With the help of WebSphere Application Server and VisualAge for Java, Fireman’s Fund was able to implement AgriWare and reduce its time to market by 40 percent and move towards an annual IT savings of $2 million. The company chose WebSphere software because of IBM’s commitment to Java and to evolving the WebSphere Application Server, according to Fireman’s Fund Chief Technology Officer Rafe Hargrove, which would support the application better over the long run. He Also cited the seamless integration between WAS and VisualAge for Java, which reduced the complexity of his team’s development effort.

AgriWare is the first mission-critical B2B application for Fireman’s Fund’s AgriBusiness division. The implementation uses IBM Internet technologies, including WebSphere Application Server and VisualAge for Java, to streamline every aspect of insurance policy processing and administration, particularly policy quoting, policy issues and management. The Windows-based solution enables agents to give their customers quotes and information quickly with around-the-clock service.

In the short time since its introduction, WebSphere has:

Garnered thousands of customers, including most of the world’s top commercial banks, telecommunications, healthcare and Wall Street brokerage companies. These companies rely on WebSphere for their complete Internet infrastructure needs — including integrating their key business processes and conducting high-volume web transactions.

Enjoyed eight consecutive quarters of double-digit growth, increasing 53 percent on Windows NT and Unix in 1Q 2001.

Gained significant market share, according to Giga Information Group. Over the past ten months, WebSphere’s market share has nearly doubled. That’s more than ten times the growth rate of BEA’s market share over the same time period.

IBM’s WebSphere Software WebSphere is Internet infrastructure software — known as middleware — that enables companies to develop, deploy and integrate next-generation e-business applications, such as those for business-to-business e-commerce. WebSphere supports business applications from simple Web publishing through enterprise-scale transaction processing. WebSphere transforms the way businesses manage customer, partner and employee relationships. More information about the WebSphere software platform is on the Web at www.ibm.com/websphere.

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