Stories by Ted Smalley Bowen, Ed Scannell, and Stephanie Sanborn

IBM Increases Ties with Lotus Unit

THE APPOINTMENT of a longtime IBM executive as Lotus' next president and CEO, and a product strategy that increasingly merges Lotus Development Corp. and IBM Corp. technology have sparked concerns among customers and some partners that the familiar yellow and black of Lotus could be fading to IBM blue. Specifically, concerns were raised that the needs of Lotus users may be overlooked if its strategy is tied too closely to that of IBM.