Points of View
The Undercover Analyst: Back by unpopular demand, featuring real analysis!
We’re moving away from the relentless political satire in recent weeks (Hey, we’re only human!). We recently caught sight of an animated discussion on the future of Facebook’s new cryptocurrency at a local bowling alley.
HFS’ very own Lucy Timms giving the HFS Analyst bowling team a hard time about some fairly libelous cheating allegations.
But on to the serious stuff. In case you hadn’t heard, Facebook announced Libra, its cryptocurrency.
Now there’s something new for would-be Wolves of Wall Street to extoll the virtues of at conferences. Here at the Undercover Analyst, though, we can’t help but wonder if a company at the root of various data-privacy concerns is the true source of the digital-currency salvation—even with the backing of Visa, Uber, and Andreessen Horowitz.
HCL partners with Cricket Australia to develop its digital experience for fans, players, partners, and employees.
Although estimates vary, cricket has a fan base of up to 2.5 billion worldwide, with Australia home to approximately 2 million, making this a particularly exciting deal for HCL to prove its Scale Digital methodology.
HCL replaces Accenture, which has worked with Cricket Australia over the last five years.
Airbus collaborates with Microsoft to explore HoloLens’ mixed-reality applications to training, design, and manufacturing.
The objective of the collaboration is to facilitate the efficiency and ergonomics of work through better information, communication, and visualization of problems—for example, testing a design for its manufacturability or immersing trainees in their future environments. Airbus sees the potential to cut manufacturing times by a third while improving quality.
Salesforce buys Tableau for $15.7 billion.
The customer relationship management (CRM) supplier announced its intention to add the data visualization pioneer to its repertoire, seeking to bolster its customer analytics capability alongside its 2018 acquisition of MuleSoft, a data integration supplier. The Tableau announcement came days after Google bought Looker, a business intelligence platform supplier. For more information, take a look at our full report covering the acquisition.
It’s becoming a regular serial offender… Atos Announces:
- A contract with international energy and utilities giant National Grid to deliver digital managed workplace services.
- A partnership with Virtru, a data protection platform provider, to boost the protection of data across cloud-based platforms in digital workplaces.
- A contract with offshore wind leader Orsted for an extensive communications solutions package for two windfarms off the coast of Taiwan. This is the first contract under Atos and Orsted’s frame agreement for digitally supporting windfarm projects across APAC, having built a similar European agreement in 2017.
- A six-year contract with Damart, an international fashion and home shopping retailer, to migrate infrastructure to the cloud through a combination of Google and Atos’ Cloud platforms.
Infosys is “building” capability… sorry.
Infosys has collaborated with Microsoft to provide smart buildings and spaces (SB&S) solutions in the architecture, engineering, construction, facilities management, and real estate development markets. Azure services and sensor-enabled devices will combine with Infosys’ global networks and experience in building ecosystems to improve energy efficiencies, optimize space usage, productivity, and improved user experiences.
Infosys also announces a long-term strategic partnership with Toyota Material Handling Europe (TMHE).
The agreement will see Infosys help TMHE in its digital journey by enabling transformation to a scalable digital hybrid cloud platform. Infosys will offer application services, digital workplace capabilities, infrastructure management, and a dedicated data center operation.
Cognizant to acquire Zenith Technologies, a leader in life sciences manufacturing technology services.
While Cognizant’s new CEO Brian Humphries rattles a few cages internally (full analysis here), he’s also loosening the purse strings to develop Cognizant’s foothold in key verticals and strategic technologies. The most recent purchase is Ireland-based Zenith Technologies, which specializes in implementing digital and IoT technologies to manage, control, and optimize drug and medical device production for maximum operational efficiency and regulatory compliance. Cognizant hopes the acquisition will extend its capabilities for design, implementing and managing end-to-end operational and information technology systems for biopharmaceutical and medical device manufacturers. This acquisition adds IoT as a main strategic imperative for Cognizant, providing a two-fold gain: strengthening life-science industry expertise and broadening its IoT skills.
It’s no doubt the vibrant live music and party scene near the firm’s Cork headquarters will entice many Cognizant execs to plan a long weekend to “inspect” their new acquisition.
Overheard at HFS:
“Brian’s buying up Irish companies to feed his ugly baby.”
Virgin Atlantic partners with Accenture to bring self-service capabilities to cargo management.
Virgin Atlantic became the first to adopt Accenture’s new cloud-based freight and logistics platform in its digital transformation drive. The move will underpin various parts of Virgin Atlantic’s wide-ranging digital transformation efforts, developing customer-facing systems to plug into the firm’s booking and ticket allocation platform. Customers will have access to improved service support with the introduction of chatbots and live-chat options. The plan is to automate large parts of the booking process for customers, allowing them a self-service option when booking tickets. Suzy Wardle, head of digital and distribution at Virgin Atlantic Cargo, explained that the move is in direct response to changing customer demands and preferences.
Although, we do wonder if self-service will ever be intelligent enough to soothe the frustrated travelers stuck behind someone forcing random documents into the automated passport control barriers.
Shockingly, there’s another Accenture acquisition—talk about Déjà vu!
Seriously, Accenture acquired Déjà vu Security, a firm specializing in security design and testing of enterprise software platforms, as well as IoT technologies. The acquisition will bolster Accenture Security’s cyber defense offerings.
IBM, KPMG, Merck, and Walmart team up to get serious about blockchain and drug supply chains.
The four firms are collaborating to develop a solution to track prescription medicines and vaccines as they travel through the supply chain. The hope is that each drug package will have a unique identifier so that it can be tracked from the manufacturer to the pharmacy, and finally to consumers. The hope is that this unique team, which includes a technology partner (IBM), an understanding of compliance (KPMG), a drug company (Merk), and a distributor (Walmart), will entice the industry to become more collaborative and willing to share data.
IBM to win an unconditional EU okay for its $34 billion Red Hat acquisition.
With the deal going ahead, it’s worth looking at our previous analysis—the word on the street is despite the shift in the competitive environment the backlash hasn’t harmed RedHat cool kid reputation. If IBM and RedHat can keep this up, their plans for cloud supremacy may not seem as far-fetched as they did a few months ago.
Tech Mahindra signs a multi-year contract with Airbus for cabin and cargo design engineering.
On a recent flight, we dug through the plethora of options on in-flight entertainment systems and couldn’t help but think back to the time we were all stuck facing one screen in the middle of the plane for the in-flight movie (which always seemed to be Ice Age). Things have come a long way since then, and partnerships with firms like Tech Mahindra should keep the innovations rolling. Through the partnership, Tech Mahindra hopes to use its specialized skills and competencies in the growing cabin engineering space. Karthikeyan Natarajan, Tech Mahindra’s Global Head of Engineering and IoT, explained that this is a key step toward further nurturing the relationship with Airbus.
The acquisition creates a Nordic digital consultancy, offering software, cloud solutions, robotics, and other services. After years of Tieto being a potential buyer of Evry, the deal was finally complete as it hopes to expand in the Nordic IT market. I The merged company will have annual revenues of nearly $3.4 billion while aiming to cut costs by approximately $85 million through layoffs and other cuts. The Nordic market has been an early adopter of technology—a key market for any company with pan-European IT services ambitions. This merger helps to protect both firms from aggressive expansion by rival global firms and bolsters delivery capabilities across the industry, both onshore and offshore.
DXC completed its acquisition of Luxoft, having reached an agreement in January 2019, adding depth to key verticals while simultaneously expanding its portfolio of digital offerings.
“With Luxoft, DXC will cover the full spectrum of business-driven digital initiatives, from modernizing client legacy IT systems to delivering transformational digital solutions at scale,” said Mike Lawrie, DXC’s chairman, president, and CEO. “Luxoft’s proven success for global clients creates new value and benefits for all DXC stakeholders. I want to welcome the Luxoft team to the DXC family.”
It’s a welcome move by DXC to help boost its offshore delivery capabilities for its application business as the market looks to re-platform core business applications, but we need to see this translate into financial success over the next few quarters.
Unisys partners with PayCargo to expand the capabilities of the e-invoicing and settlement solutions provider into enhanced cargo processing for airlines, importers, and freight forwarders. Unisys recent financial performance has improved, partly as it focuses on its most successful markets, such as air transport. Partnerships like this are key to differentiation in these sub-industry markets.
Wipro partners with Moogsoft, an artificial intelligence for IT operations (AIOps) provider, aiming to boost its own AIOps solutions. Moogsoft’s expertise will help to improve business availability for clients through root-cause analysis, alert management, and predictive analytics.
NTT DATA acquires a small stake in CloudHedge Technologies, a DevOps technology developer and supplier, focusing on legacy digital integration from data centers to cloud. NTT DATA is doubling down on cloud migration and re-platforming market. Many organizations are looking to retool virtual-machine-focused cloud estates and modernize development around DevOps.
Capgemini enters into the “Skywise Partners” program with Airbus to develop the platform’s data services to airlines. Eighty airlines globally are already connected to Skywise, which facilitate the whole industry and its ecosystem’s digital transformation.
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