Magazine article American Banker

Bank One Goal: Tighter Internet Management: New Unit Will Try to Consolidate Web Sprawl

Magazine article American Banker

Bank One Goal: Tighter Internet Management: New Unit Will Try to Consolidate Web Sprawl

Article excerpt

In an attempt to reconcile the many pieces of its disparate Internet strategy, Bank One Corp. on Friday named two executives to head its newly formed Internet Business Group.

The unit appears to be taking the shape of similar ones created at other banking companies to ensure the benefits of the Internet become fully embedded into their core businesses.

But Bank One, which created an extra set of administrative, marketing, and processing tasks for itself when it introduced its Internet-only WingspanBank.com, may have a bigger integration task than most.

To consolidate its sprawling Internet efforts, the company is calling upon Michael Cleary, the president of Wingspan, to also oversee all Internet efforts for consumers and small businesses. Bank One also has hired Christopher Klein, an exile from the dot-com world, to coordinate its Internet efforts for large commercial customers.

Giving Mr. Cleary dual responsibility for Internet activities at Bank One and Wingspan sends an even stronger signal that the company is working to more closely integrate its Internet-only and traditional bank. Last September it announced that it would promote Wingspan products through Bank One branches in Phoenix as a precursor to possibly rolling out the products in all of the bank's 1,800 branches.

Mr. Cleary, 42, initially will focus on developing strategies for bankone.com, firstusa.com, WingspanBank.com, and private client services.

"The challenge for us is how do we bring our brands together for customers and how do we make the sum greater than the parts," he said. "We want to bring the learnings together all in one place and give the customers the same feel, experience, and efficiency throughout all of our businesses."

The group is also being asked to create an organizational structure that will reduce the number of vendors and software applications used and accelerate the development and implementation of online capabilities. …

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