February 2017 saw very little M&A action. Nokia paid $371 million for Comptel and Apple picked up an AI startup company RealFace. Another company in the news, but for the wrong reasons was Samsung which is in the middle of a significant bribery scandal. On the economic front there were a lot of positive indicators out of the US and Canada also added 48,000 jobs in January. Around the world, the UK is starting to see some labour impacts from the Brexit decision as EU nationals are not applying for jobs they used to do. Brazil reached a record high in unemployment, in India hiring activity declined and in China there is expected to be a boom in hiring. Perhaps more interesting this month than the M&A activity, or lack thereof, were some other tidbits of news.
IT Industry News – January 2017
The multi-billion-dollar deal of the month was Cisco’s purchase of app performance management company, AppDynamics for $3.7 billion. In additiona, HP Enterprise purchased data center hardware provider, SimpliVity, Microsoft acquired Montreal-based deep learning start-up Maluuba, Google announced plans to purchase Fabric, Trello has been purchased by Atlassian, Salesforce bought Unity&Variety and Datavail acquired Canadian IT channel leader Navantis. Some non-M&A news in January included IBM announcing it broke the US record for number of patents granted in a single year — 8,088 to be exact. Avaya Inc. announced it filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection as a result of accumulating debt from their major acquisitions in the last ten years. According to a report released by Gartner Inc., 2016 saw a decrease in the shipment of PCs, the lowest it has been since 2007.
Industry News – December 2016
In December 2016, Adecco sold its majority stake in Beeline VMS to GTRC for $100 million in cash plus a $30 million note; SS&C purchased Conifer for $88.5 million; QRX Technology Group acquired IT equipment provider Kerr Norton; Juniper Networks acquired cloud operations management provider AppFormix; Uber bought Geometric Intelligence Inc.; and Shopify acquired Tiny Hearts, a Toronto-based mobile product development studio. In other news, Yahoo disclosed that one billion accounts were hacked in 2013, making it the largest data breach recorded in history. To safeguard against hacking attempts on your devices, Check Point Software advises users to make sure they download the latest versions of software as they have discovered new malware that targets devices running outdated software. Cyber attacks and security breaches are also a major concern for IT and business professionals where, according to Symantec, 30% of business surveyed have experienced a hack over the last two years.
Industry News – November 2016
November 2016 saw some M&A activity, although it was not too busy. The big deal of the month saw Broadcom acquire Brocade Communication Systems. Adobe also purchased TubeMogul; Wipro Limited will Appirio; Oracle Corp. has announced its plans to acquire Dyn Inc.; SoftwareOne acquired and integrated House of Lync; and Avnet completed an acquisition of Hackster. In other news, hackers caused some problems for Casino Rama Resort and AdultFriendFinder exposed 340 million users’ information. A Harvey Nash Technology Survey suggests 94% of technology professionals across the world believe a significant part of their job will be automated within ten years, rendering their current skills redundant. The economic indicators in the US were generally favourable and jobs numbers were quite positive. Canada’s economy continues the same tepid trend we have seen for quite some time. Sometimes up a little, sometimes down a little, with unemployment hovering around the 7% mark.
IT Industry News – October 2016
October 2016 did not have much in the way of deals, with one BIG deal seeing Qualcomm pay $47 billion for NXP Semiconductor. Wipro also paid $500 million Appirio, Google picked up FameBit, and Pivot Technology Solutions bought Teramach. Other news saw Google step into the smartphone world with the release of Pixel, at a time when wireless use in Canada is more than 50% of telecom revenues. Twitter announced layoffs plus the fact it will be shutting down the video service Vine and HP Inc. also announced layoffs. Most indicators that were based on numbers were reasonably positive. A couple of subjective indices were down, but nothing crazy. There were also numerous reports from IDC and Gartner this month with predictions of growth in many tech sectors including total IT spend, cloud spending, security spending etc. About the only areas that are trending down are PC and smartwatches. Here at Eagle, our CEO, Janis Grantham was included in the 2016 Global Power 100 Women in Staffing list.
IT Industry News – September 2016
September 2016 saw a couple of large deals. Tech Data paid $2.6 billion for the technology solutions group of Avnet, and HP paid $1.05 billion for Samsung’s printer business. Other deals included Google, Subway, and Accenture. Economic news was generally positive around the world with a few exceptions, Brazil being the most obvious. The US was fairly positive in most indicators despite the upcoming election and their “interesting” potential presidents. The Canadian outlook seemed generally positive, of course these reports were prior to announcements of carbon taxes. The economy certainly doesn’t “feel” positive. Yahoo had some more bad press, this time for a security breach, and Blackberry announced that it was getting out of the hardware business. A couple of studies looking at emerging technologies saw increasing investment in big data analytics and IoT in the manufacturing sector and a suggestion that robots might only replace 6% of jobs in the future.
Industry News – August 2016
August 2016 saw a fair bit of M&A activity. The largest deal saw global staffing company Randstad buy one of the larger job boards, Monster. A similar sized deal saw Intel shell out $408 million for artificial intelligence company Nervana. Other companies buying included Hewlett Packard Enterprises, Apple, Salesforce, and ScanSource. Cisco was in the news for more layoffs, announcing 5,500 people, approximately 7% of their workforce, will lose their jobs as the company switches its focus from hardware to software. Economic indicators around the globe were not too bad, with the US still talking growth, albeit slightly slower than previously expected. Other markets generally saw positive numbers on employment, except perhaps Mexico and Canada (which lost 31,000 jobs in July). A number of reports looking at emerging tech markets suggest that IoT, Cloud services and Video as a Service are all areas of growth and thus possible areas for investment.
IT Industry News – July 2016
July 2016 saw some large deals, with Verizon making two multi-billion dollar acquisitions. Oracle were also out spending big dollars, paying $9.3 billion for cloud-based ERP company, Netsuite. Softbank paid a whopping$32.2 billion for chip designer ARM Holdings. Also joining the July billion dollar club was security vendor Avast, who bought AVG for $1.3 billion. Other deals this month saw Salesforce pay $582 million for cloud-based startup Quip; Google bought video company Anvato; Terradata bought training company Big Data Partnership; and Opentext bought analytics company Recommind. Other companies in the news in July were Microsoft for their continuing layoffs associated with their Nokia purchase and Facebook’s internet drone program reached a milestone with its first flight. Oracle also lost a $3 billion lawsuit to HPE going back to a 2011 decision to not support HP Itanium servers. Things are slow here in Canada, and the US continues to create jobs and show positive signs.
IT Industry News – June 2016
June 2016 saw the Brexit vote upsetting the markets and causing uncertainty; plus there was plenty of M&A activity. The big deal was the Microsoft purchase of LinkedIn for a whopping $26 billion. More billion dollar deals included Salesforce paying $2.8 billion for e-commerce platform maker Demandware and Amazon announcing an extra $3 billion investment in its India operations. There were other significant deals by Daetwyler Holdings AG for Raspberry Pi maker Premier Farnell Plc; Red Hat for API management software company 3Scale; and OpenText for HP’s Customer Communication Management products. Additionally, an investment group bought Dell’s software arm; Microsoft bought natural language start up Wand Labs; and Samsung bought cloud computing company Joyent. Google Capital announced its first investment in a public company, investing $46 million in Care.com. The US economic news was less buoyant and Canada continues to show little sign of booming.
IT Industry News – May 2016
May 2016 saw some M&A activity, with the largest deal seeing HPE merge its services arm with CSC. In another large deal, Vista Equity Partners is acquiring customer service and marketing cloud provider Marketo. Other big names making deals included Oracle, Google, Infor, and ARM. Microsoft ended an unhappy period by divesting its feature phone business to FIH mobile and GoDaddy picked up cloud-based phone company FreedomVoice. New Signature picked up another Microsoft solution provider, Dot Net Solutions; and Edmonton based F12.Net bought Calgary-based professional services company XCEL. Other companies in the news included Apple who invested into the Chinese “Uber” and Microsoft announced another 1,850 job cuts related to its mobile phone business. One security report suggests that two thirds of large businesses have suffered cyberattacks and another IDC report suggests the big data and analytics market will expand by 50% over the next 4 years.