by Mark Chillingworth

That was May 2011 for CIOs

May 25, 20115 mins

May 3rd

Financial services group Aviva appointed Cathryn Riley as CIO. She replaced Toby Redshaw, who left to become global CIO of American Express in November 2010. Riley has been with Aviva in a number of roles since 1996, most recently as UK commercial director and previously in non-technical business-line roles including HR, customer services, operations and general management.


An agreement between the NHS and CSC will be made soon, according to the services giant. The news follows months of extensive negotiations between the parties after CSC system deployments missed a series of deadlines and a major NHS IT deployment site reportedly dropped the supplier over a “lack of confidence”. CSC will deliver work on a “reduced scope and volume” under the forthcoming agreement, the firm said in a statement. The work comprises a substantial share business for CSC, which has now cut revenue guidance for its financial year by $100m (£61m) to $16.1bn (£9.8bn).


IDC predicted that ARM would capture a 15 per cent share of the PC microprocessor market by 2015 as the company increases development of processors for laptops and desktops. ARM, which licenses processor designs to chip makers, has no presence in the PC market but could take market share as consumers reconsider PC options with the emergence of Microsoft’s Windows OS, which will work on the company’s low-power processors, said Shane Rau, research director for computing semiconductors at IDC.


The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) published advice for UK CIOs on how they can comply with a new EU law on the use of cookies. From May 2011, UK-based organisations will have to get ‘informed consent’ from visitors to their websites before storing and retrieving information on users’ computers. Using cookies is a common method of storing this information. The requirement is due to an amendment to the EU’s Privacy and Electronic Communications Directive, and firms face fines of up to £500,000 if they are in breach. The ICO’s guide encourages CIOs to check what type of cookies they use, assess how intrusive the technology is, and decide how best to obtain consent.


Microsoft acquired Skype for $8.5bn (£5.2bn). Once the merger is complete, Microsoft plans to add Skype support to its Xbox and Kinect gaming devices and Windows Phone mobile operating system, and connect Skype users with its own Lync, Outlook and Xbox Live communications services.


Security and counter-terrorism minister Baroness Neville-Jones resignedafter reportedly clashing with Home Secretary Theresa May. Neville-Jones announced her move in a letter to Prime Minister David Cameron that offered no hint of what lay behind her sudden departure beyond offering the Prime Minister ideological support and noting that she informed the government of her wish to leave some time ago.


Professional social networking site LinkedIn is getting ready to go public. The company announced that it’s offering up 7.8 million shares at $45 per share. LinkedIn is offering 4,827,804 shares, while 3,012,196 shares are being offered by selling stockholders.The Wall Street Journal noted that at that stock price, LinkedIn is valued at more than $4 billion.

Adam Gerrard, formerly CIO of car hire giants Avis Europe has moved to become the CTO of the online hotel booking aggregation service.

Gerrard had been group CIO of Avis Europe since November 2007. At Avis Gerrard brought together the national IT operations in the various markets Avis operates in to create a central services model that enabled greater sharing of technology and best practices.


South Lanarkshire Councilcut its annual energy costs by £40,000 after implementing power management software on its PCs. The local authority has been using the system from Verismic Software on its 4,500 desktop and laptop computers for a year, and said that ROI was achieved in less than 12 months. The computers are located across multiple office locations, but the software can be managed centrally via the corporate network.


The British Medical Associationcalled on the NHS to “take stock” on the national programme and reconsider its remit, as a series of tough parliamentary reviews began and a lead supplier proposed a strategy U-turn.

Dr Chaand Nagpaul, a member of the doctors’ association IT industry party, said: “Too often the programme has been aimed at supporting a political ambition instead of taking account of the real needs of the NHS. The programme’s remit must be decided by clinicians and patients.”


Marks & Spencersaid it was on track to deliver £300m in savings through the upgrading of its IT and restructuring of its supply chain. The company saw an increase of underlying pre-tax profits being posted of £714 million – a 13 per cent increase. In November 2010 M&S increased the “benefits case” of the IT upgrade and supply chain restructure from £250m to £300m, without increasing the capital investment required.  The company also brought forward the completion of the plan to 2015/16. “We remain firmly on track to deliver against this target”, said M&S chief executive Marc Bolland, in his results statement.


Rentokil Initial’s troubled courier business City Link is attempting to turn around its fortunes with a technology overhaul.

City Link has been in the red since 2007. In the first quarter of this year, the division, which generates around 60 per cent of its sales from business customers, reported that operating losses had increased from £4.4 million to £10.7 million in a year, partly caused by the severe snow.


Three men were arrested in connection with an online document counterfeiting operation, the Metropolitan Police Fraud Squad announced.

The police didn’t specify which business was involved beyond saying that the three, aged 29, 40 and 44, were detained in raids at addresses in Cheshire, Surrey and Dorset on suspicion of offering bogus documents to carry out financial crime.