General Motors Corp.'s intention to spin off its Electronic Data Systems Corp. subsidiary is not likely to have an immediate impact on the company's banking clients, observers and company officials said.
EDS, a Plano, Tex., technology and consulting firm that provides banks and other industries with outsourcing services, may once again become an independent, public company if the plan, announced Monday, comes to fruition.
M. Arthur Gillis, a New Orleans-based bank technology analyst, called the transaction a "nonevent" in terms of its impact on EDS' financial group.
However, Mr. Gillis, president of Computer Based Solutions Inc., said the move is a possible prelude to merger deals brewing in the financial market and may position EDS to be acquired by a larger technology firm.
"Companies such as AT&T or International Business Machines Corp. are committed to the fact that it's not a hardware game anymore, but a services and solutions business," he said. "EDS may look attractive to them."
In a prepared release, officials of the $10 billion company said the transaction - scheduled to occur in the first half, pending stockholder and other approvals - would give EDS greater flexibility to move into new markets and forge new alliances.
"With a marketplace that's becoming increasingly competitive, we feel we would be able to respond to changes more quickly as a stand-alone company," said Tony Goode, an EDS spokesman.
He added that the company's industry groups should not directly be affected if the split-off occurs.
The company's financial industry group, with about 5,000 financial industry customers, accounted for approximately $1.4 billion of EDS' total 1994 revenue.
Analysts say EDS' potential status as a stand-alone company may raise its value in the marketplace.
"EDS has been an undervalued asset within the GM portfolio," said Martin McDevitt, an analyst with Cleary, Gull, Reiland & McDevitt Inc.
"The company has done well on its own merits, not because it is a subsidiary of GM. The market will ultimately place greater valuation on the business as a separate company."