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Habitat for Humanity signs agreement with General Business Machines Corporation

January 12, 2010

A new partnership between General Business Machines Corporation (GBM), the exclusive IBM distributor in Central America and the Caribbean, and Habitat for Humanity, a non-profit housing assistance organization, will extend to national Habitat offices throughout the region.

Habitat for Humanity, an organization dedicated to helping low-income families’ access adequate housing, signed a partnership agreement with General Business Machines Corporation (GBM) on Thursday, January 7, 2010. The agreement between the partners will benefit low-income families in all of the Central American and Caribbean countries where GBM operates.

The partnership, which states that GBM will donate funds towards the construction of homes for families whose income is insufficient to otherwise access an adequate housing solution, was signed in Costa Rica. Habitat for Humanity Latin America and Caribbean Area Vice-president, Torre Nelson and Alfredo Darquea, Chief Financial Officer with GBM were present at the signing. Costa Rica, a recently highlighted by New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof as the “happiest country in the world,” is the home of Habitat for Humanity’s regional headquarters.

According to Jeimy Gamboa, Resource Development Manager for Habitat for Humanity Costa Rica, the partnership arose from an initiative of Habitat Costa Rica. Shortly after, GBM opted to expand the project into a regional agreement.

In addition to economic support from the corporation, GBM employees will also volunteer alongside Habitat for Humanity families as they build their homes. “Habitat’s model allows people to have a direct connection to the needs of the families, and to their own needs, in such a way that their efforts resonate in many aspects of the families’ quality of life,” explains Gamboa.

For GBM, the decision to choose Habitat for Humanity as a partner stems from the corporation’s commitment to corporate social responsibility, and Habitat’s regional extension and level of experience in housing assistance programs. “The partnership between GBM and Habitat for Humanity allows us to get closer to society—serving families with the highest level of need and involving all of our employees in the responsibility we share to make the world better,” says Alfredo Darquea, Chief Financial Officer for GBM.

About Habitat for Humanity International

Habitat for Humanity International is an ecumenical Christian ministry that welcomes to its work all people dedicated to the cause of eliminating poverty housing. Since its founding in 1976, Habitat has built, rehabilitated, repaired or improved more than 350,000 houses worldwide, providing simple, decent and affordable shelter for more than 1.75 million people. For more information, or to donate or volunteer, visit www.habitat.org.

About Global Business Machines Corporation/GBM
GBM Corporation is the exclusive distributor of IBM information technology goods and services in Central America and the Caribbean. The corporation is present in Guatemala, Honduras, Belize, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Dominican Republic and Haiti. GBM officially supports leading brands in the industry such as Cisco Systems, Cognos, Diebold, Everis, LatCapital, Lenovo, SAP and Apple, among others. For more information, please visit www.gbm.net.