M-I Breaks New Ground With Cognos® Finance

-- Cognos Finance to bring unified financial system to Smith International operations--

BURLINGTON, MA, January 19, 2001—Employees at M-I L.L.C., an international drilling fluids organization, are accustomed to helping their customers go deep into the earth to find what they are looking for. But when it comes to financial information, the company's employees prefer to have a single, unified view of financial information right at their fingertips. CognosŪ (Nasdaq: COGN; TSE:CSN), the world's largest and most successful business intelligence company, today announced that M-I , along with Smith International Inc., has deployed Cognos Finance enterprise-wide to perform rapid budgeting, forecasting, and eventually to do a consolidation of financial data.

A company jointly owned by Smith International and Schlumberger affiliates, M-I operations are conducted in 50 countries around the world, and include the supply of drilling and completion fluids, as well as solids control and pressure control equipment to major oil producers. M-I also provides field engineering and technical support and is a major worldwide producer of barite and bentonite mineral marketed to the oil industry.

When the company was looking for a way to perform budgeting, forecasting, and consolidation within a number of Smith International's subsidiary companies and M-I's many offices, the company chose Cognos Finance. The task was complex: implement a single financial reporting system to unite the financial information of Smith Drilling Bits and Services, Wilson Distribution, M-I, and Smith Headquarters.

Under the old system, the budgeting and forecasting was tremendously onerous, according to Vern Cooper, Business Unit Applications Manager, M-I L.L.C. The budgets from the various units were keyed into Excel spreadsheets and converted for entry into an Oracle database for consolidation -- a process that, with executive approvals of the numbers -- often took three or four months.

Cognos Finance, which will be accessed by operational managers via the organization's corporate Intranet, is projected to significantly reduce the time required, saving time and money. Cognos Finance will now provide a unified and global view of financial information, with a consistent corporate Web template for financial information, ensuring that the rekeying and conversion of often very different budgets and reports will be a thing of the past.

Cognos Finance is tailored to both financial professionals who require sophisticated manipulation of financial data and non-financial professionals requiring Web-based access to financial analysis and budgeting. Cognos Finance provides entire organizations with critical financial data by pulling information out of disparate sources and rapidly consolidating it to align business strategies, actual results, budgets, and operational plans quickly and efficiently, as well as allow sophisticated analysis of organizations' business performance.

Most importantly, for M-I and the other Smith International subsidiaries, Cognos Finance will allow them to do intensive budgeting and forecasting on a more frequent basis rather than simply once a year with the old system.

Cognos Finance will also reduce the burden on IT. By allowing managers and financial professionals across the company to access the information and create their own reports, IT professionals will be able to focus on more strategic IT issues.

M-I has used Cognos enterprise business intelligence for several years, and chose Cognos Finance based on that positive relationship. "We liked the synergy created between the new and existing implementations," said Janet Hall, Business IT Manager. Cognos Finance can be accessed directly by Cognos PowerPlay, giving users the sophisticated analysis of the industry's number one business intelligence tool.

"Through the simplicity of a Web browser, all operational managers will be able to access and effectively use financial data with little to no IT assistance," said Alan Rottenberg, senior vice president, e-business Intelligence Applications Unit, Cognos. "Cognos Finance will allow M-I to streamline administrative processes and use technology to further business goals."

M-I L.L.C.
M-I L.L.C., a company jointly owned by affiliates of Smith International, Inc. (NYSE, PSE: SII), and Schlumberger Ltd. (NYSE:SLB), is a leading supplier of drilling and completion fluid products/systems, services and equipment to the worldwide petroleum industry.

For more information visit http://www.midf.com

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