June 2020 was the fourth month into the pandemic and the fallout continues, the Canadian Federal government announced increased spending in the last 4 months that is higher than their usual annual budget, and Canadian debt passed $1 trillion, hence a recent downgrade in credit rating. A quick look at reports around the world show unemployment levels and GDP impact that according to the OECD makes this recession the worst in nearly a century. Companies are still making acquisitions and in June we saw IBM pick up cybersecurity vendor Spanugo; Apple bought device management company Fleetsmith: And here in Canada, Bell sold off 25 of its data centres to Equinox, to build its war chest for the upcoming Spectrum auction; VMware bought anti-malware company Lastline; and there were a couple of smaller deals that are more detailed below. Other companies in the news, include Deloitte, Accenture, DXC, AT&T, Dell and Microsoft.
IT Industry News – May 2020
In May 2020 we continue to fight the COVID-19 pandemic and things are tough everywhere. IT spending worldwide is expected to fall by 8% this year; however, cloud spending is up. For all of the disruption there is still a fair bit of M&A activity. This month, Intel bought mobility startup Moovit for $900 million; and also picked up Texas-based networking company, Rivet Networks. Apple bought Virtual Reality company NextVR; VMWare bought Kubernotes security vendor Octarine; and Microsoft is planning for its 5G offerings with the purchase of Metaswitch; Mictrosoft also picked up robotic process company Softomotive. Cisco splashed out (possibly close to $1 billion) for network monitoring company Thousand Eyes; Zoom is working to improve security with its purchase of Keybae; and Nvidia is buying Cumulus Networks. There were a number of lesser-known deals, that include Beanfield Metro buying the WAN network from Aptum Technologies.
IT Industry News – April 2020
April 2020 continues to be dominated by COVID-19, with global efforts to fight the pandemic causing the economy to retract worldwide. Talking about the impact of the pandemic, IDC released projections on Canadian IT Spending and it wasn’t pretty. There was some M&A activity in April. Apple picked up an AI voice company, Voysis, that is expected to improve on Siri; Accenture beefed up its security practice with the acquisition of Revolutionary Security; and Cisco picked up Fluidmesh Networks to assist in their IoT strategy. Other deals included Zscaler buying Cloudneeti; mobile security company MobileIron bought Incapptic Connect, to assist in software releases; and Scopely scooped up another gaming company, this time PierPlay make of Scrabble Go. Cognizant was in the news as it was hit by the Maze ransomware, affecting both it and its client’s systems. In other cyber security news, it appears that targeted attacks, such as spear-Phishing, now accounts for the 60% of cyber-attacks.
IT Industry News – March 2020
In March 2020, the big news is all about the impact around the world of the COVID-19 pandemic. The economic and employment fallout have been dramatic, and there is significant uncertainty about how quickly people can get back to work. There was some M&A activity worthy of mention, including the $34.9 billion bid for HP, and subsequent withdrawal by Xerox. Veritas Capital is buying DXC’s Health and Human Services business for $5 billion; Private Equity firm Hellman & Friedman is paying $1.15 billion for Checkmarx; Palo Alto Networks is buying CloudGenix for $420 million; and Accenture is paying $139 million for Context Information Security. Other deals saw Watchguard buy Panda Security and NetApp buy Talon Software. In the wake of so many layoffs there are bright spots around the world as some companies are staffing up, including Walmart and Amazon.
IT Industry News – February 2020
February 2020 had some big dollars and some big names involved. Dell announced that it is selling RSA, to a group of investors for $2.075 billion. IoT company, Forescout, was bought by private equity for $1.9 billion. Another big deal saw SAIC pay $1.2 billion for Unisys Federal. Infosys paid $250 million for Simplus, HPE bought Scytale and Square bought Toronto-based AI startup Dessa. Other news was somewhat dominated by the coronavirus outbreak and what that might mean for our industry. The jobs news around the world was generally upbeat and the US economy continues to perform strongly. In Canada, the job numbers were not too bad, but there are lots of clouds on the horizon with blockades affecting infrastructure projects and resulting regional unrest.
IT Industry News – January 2020
January 2020 saw Insight Partners pay $5 billion for cloud data management company Veeam; Insight Partners also bought IoT security startup Armis. Mapletree, paid $557 million for 10 of Digital Realty’s datacenters. ServiceNow bought Loom Systems and Passage AI; Xerox Arena Group; VMWare bought Nyansa; and Hitachi Vantara bought Waterline Data. Other deals saw Fireye buy Cloudvisory; Ahead bought its third solution provider in the last six months, Platform Consulting Group; AWS partner Effectual bought JHC Technologies; and Park Place Technologies bought Intellinet’s network operations center. VMWare was also in the news for confirming its annual « workforce rebalancing » initiative which may involve hundreds of layoffs. Gartner tells us that 2020 IT spending is likely to increase. The world’s CEOs are a little concerned about a potential slowdown or even recession in 2020 and the World Economic Forum announced the « Reskilling Revolution ». Both the EU and the OECD had positive employment numbers which were reflected in most of the stats from around the world. Even where the reports were less than positive, the underlying message was that the economy is doing OK.
IT Industry News – December 2019
December 2019 saw some big dollar deals in the M&A world with the biggest seeing LogMeIn sold to private equity for $4.3 billion. Intel shelled out $2 billion for Habana Labs and F5 Networks paid $1 billion for Shape Security. In other deals, Solarwinds paid $175 million for VividCortex; NTT picked up AWS company Flux7; Fortinet bought Cybersponse; CheckPoint Software bought security company Protego; Acronis bought security company 5nine and Opswat bought cyber security company Impulse. There have been warnings that cyberattacks will increase in 2020 and 2019 ended with a couple of significant attacks coming to light, including at LifeLabs and Wawa. Here in Canada we lost 70,000 jobs in November as the US was adding 266,000 non-farm jobs. Around the world, jobs data is positive other than the obvious spots like the UK, as it continues to wrestle with Brexit.
IT Industry News – November 2019
The biggest in November 2019 saw Apollo Global taking TechData private in a deal worth $5.4 billion. eBay sold its Stubhub subsidiary to Viagogo; Xerox is selling its stake in Fuji Xerox; Google paid $2.1 billion for Fitbit; and Opentext paid $1.4 billion for Carbonite. Other deals saw Proofpoint buy ObserveIT; DXC Virtual Clarity and Bluleader; Rackspace bought Onica, and Mimecast picked up DMARC Analyzer. One other company in the news was Cognizant, who announced it would be laying off between 10,000 and 12,00 employees. Economic and jobs news around the world was a little mixed, with signs of things slowing in most countries. Some interesting reports this month, with Canada’s privacy commissioner pointing out that 28 million Canadians were affected by corporate hacks or mismanagement. Plus, two separate AI reports suggest different impacts on jobs into the future. Finally, the Global Power 150 list of Women in Staffing was released, with Eagle’s CEO Janis Grantham on the list.
IT Industry News – October 2019
The economy, while slowing down some, is still quite robust in the US and employment figures around the world are generally positive. Reports continue to suggest things will weaken in 2020 but the threat of a recession seems reduced, always bearing in mind that the ongoing trade wars are not helping. On the M&A side, activity was brisk with the largest deal happening in the robust data center space, Digital Realty paying $8.4 billion for Interxion. There was also a smaller data centre deal that saw Equinix pay for 3 data centres from Axtel; and another data center deal involving ServerFarm buying SNINES. Another big dollar deal saw Thoma Bravo offer $3.4 billion for Sophos. Big name companies out shopping included Intel, Accenture, Microsoft and Telus. Companies making headlines included Microsoft, who are grappling with an activist employee base contesting their government work; HP Inc. who announced significant layoffs; and Oracle who are going to be on a hiring binge.
IT Industry News – September 2019
September 2019 was relatively busy in M&A with Qualcomm’s $3.1 billion acquisition of TDK’s share in a RF joint venture, the largest deal of the month. There were some big names out shopping in September, with Microsoft buying cloud migration company Movere; Facebook bought Wearables company Ctrl-labs (reputedly for big dollars); HP bought endpoint security company Bromium; Western Digital bought Kazan Networks; and Github bought developer tool Semmie. Commvault paid $225 million for cloud software company Hevig and there were a few more smaller deals. Other companies in the news included YouTube who reached a $170 million settlement related to protection and privacy for children; Kik interactive shut down its messaging service; and DoorDash became the latest cyber breach casualty. The jobs numbers were optimistic in Canada, and the US also had good jobs news although the ongoing trade war and potential impeachment have put a negative spin on some of the reports coming out.