Magazine article American Banker

1st Chicago-Mercantile Tax Project to Use Hewlett-Packard Hardware, Informix Software

Magazine article American Banker

1st Chicago-Mercantile Tax Project to Use Hewlett-Packard Hardware, Informix Software

Article excerpt

First Chicago/Mercantile Services, one of two financial agents slated to process electronic tax payments for the federal government, has licensed client/server hardware from Hewlett-Packard Co. and software from Informix Software Inc.

Terms were not disclosed. First Chicago/Mercantile Services is a joint venture of First Chicago Corp. and St. Louis-based Mercantile Bancorp.

NationsBank Corp., the other banking company chosen by the Treasury Department last October, is working on a system based on mainframe computers.

NationsBank will take over the Taxlink system, the prototype for the Electronic Federal Tax Payment System. NationsBank is improving the system with First Maryland Bancorp, Baltimore; First Data Corp., Hackensack, N.J.; and Decision Systems Technology, Greenvale, N.C.

The projects are part of the development of the Electronic Federal Tax Payment System, which is expected to handle electronic tax payments from more than 90% of U.S. businesses within five years. The payments will be worth a combined $1 trillion per year.

First Chicago/Mercantile officials chose the "scalable" client/server platform after a three-month review of various systems and configurations.

Mainframes have more capacity and are considered ideal for transaction- intensive functions. But First Chicago/Mercantile officials said the client/server platform was easier to modify than a mainframe one.

That's an important consideration, said Lawrence Buettner, the general manager of the joint venture, because the government's requirements may change over the next seven years. …

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