back to article Pyrrhic victory: Co-Op wins £13m from IBM over collapse of £175m Project Cobalt insurance platform contract

Co-Op Insurance has successfully sued IBM for £13m in England over a £175m Agile software platform contract which collapsed in 2017 after a litany of failures by Big Blue and its subcontractor 1insurer. High Court trial judge Mrs Justice O'Farrell ruled that both IBM and Co-Op had contributed to the project's collapse, though …

  1. AMBxx Silver badge


    It's IBM - what did they expect?

    1. GreyWolf

      Re: IBM

      It's an insurance company - what did they expect?

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Well DUH!

    "inadequate resources to perform the Release 1 customisation and configuration work identified in the fit-gaps."

    Well, that's every outsourcing outfit ever. They will take your money and *tell* you they have the resources.....

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Well DUH!

      Yup. One project I was on needed extra resources. Despite this being a long term project, it was decided to bring in an outsourcer who claimed to have deep experience of developing Java applications to run on a Unix platform.

      On the day the work commenced we discovered the outsourcer's developers were novice VB and C# developers who had never used any operating system other than Windows. Thankfully, after six months we were able to get out of the contract by showing them to be in breach of it.

      1. Missing Semicolon Silver badge

        Re: Well DUH!

        It took six months!

      2. GruntyMcPugh

        Re: Well DUH!

        Back in the noughties when I worked for an ISP, we were planning deploying our first Windows Active Dirctory infrastructure, and we looked at implementing Cisco dynamic DNS at the top level. The 'expert' arrived, with a photcopied version of the manual, never having installed the product previously. He wasn't even on prem long enough to sample the free tea and coffee.

  3. oiseau

    Certainly not blameless

    ... customer wasn't blameless for debacle, rules UK High Court.

    Hmmm ...

    They chose IBM to build a new, essential software platform to manage their business?

    Of course they are not blameless.

    They are the only ones to blame.

    Another case of lack of due diligence?


    1. The Oncoming Scorn Silver badge

      Re: Certainly not blameless

      "Nobody Gets Fired For Buying IBM".

      1. teknopaul

        Re: Certainly not blameless

        Except IBM employees.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Certainly not blameless

          Well if the employees buy IBM they deserve it - it's not like they have any excuses after knowing the lies they tell to customers.

      2. Richocet

        Re: Certainly not blameless

        LOL. Is this still true?

  4. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    I'm thrilled

    "IBM is also pleased that the judgment reduced CISGIL's inflated damages claim to a fraction of what was claimed recognising the contractual allocation of risks "

    I'm thrilled that IBM is pleased about the reduction of the payment and totally disregards the damage that this case has done to its reputation.

    Although, given the current state of its reputation, I guess the damage isn't all that bad after all.

    1. MiguelC Silver badge

      Re: I'm thrilled

      IBM's novel business model: get hired, blow the project apart, get fired and litigate for compensation

      It probably has a higher margin than doing a good job in the first place

      I just wonder what skill sets IBM is looking for when hiring for this

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: I'm thrilled


        "I just wonder what skill sets IBM is looking for when hiring for this"

        That would be none.

      2. Robert 22

        Re: I'm thrilled

        The vendors certainly know how to qame the system.

      3. David 132 Silver badge

        Re: I'm thrilled

        I just wonder what skill sets IBM is looking for when hiring for this

        Well, I suggest there are 5 senior people at Nominet who will be on the jobs market shortly and would fit right in. Snap them up IBM, before someone else does! They're "experienced" and "highly skilled"!

      4. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: I'm thrilled

        "I just wonder what skill sets IBM is looking for when hiring for this"

        Canary imitators. Can you go cheap?

  5. Pete 2 Silver badge

    Knock, knock

    > In December CISGIL was sold to a firm called Soteria

    I wonder if an IBM salesperson was on Soteria's doorstep the next morning opening with "I hear you need an Agile insurance product"

  6. Alan Brown Silver badge

    Don't forget

    IBM now own Redhat - and it's showing already

    1. teknopaul

      Re: Don't forget

      How could we forget cenTOS cenTOS.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Been there, Done that...

    Worked for CIS on contract several times in the 1990s.

    Like all the mutual societies, it was a gentleman's club run entirely for the benefit of the directors, who did not have to put up with any interference from shareholders or other such riff-raff...

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Don’t use the co-op for anything.

    We already knew about IBM.

  9. PeterM42


    It's Been Mucked up

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