Perot Systems Corp. said it has acquired Benton International, a prominent retail banking and technology consulting firm.

Perot said Benton International, which will operate as a subsidiary from its current base in Torrance, Calif., "represents a strategic fit" with Perot's global financial services group. Customers of the latter include Barclays Bank, NationsBank Corp., and Swiss Bank Corp.

When organized in 1978 by chairman and chief executive officer John B. Benton, Benton International focused on electronic funds transfer systems. It has broadened into alternate-channel strategy and implementation, credit and debit cards, networking infrastructures, and electronic commerce.

John King, head of Perot's financial services group, called Benton "the leading strategy firm in the retail banking industry."

Benton has more than 50 employees and offices in Tampa, New York, London, Buenos Aires, and Bogota, Colombia. The price of the acquisition was not disclosed.

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