In December 2020, the pandemic continues to dominate news, and with vaccines approved and beginning to roll out there is cause for some optimism but that is going to take time. Still, it was an active month in M&A and some very big deals were announced. The $27.7 billion acquisition of collaboration software company Slack, by Salesforce, was certainly an eye opener; Platinum Equity paid $7.2 billion for Ingram Micro; Aurora is paying reputedly $4 billion for Uber’s Advanced Tech Group; and Google is reputedly paying $1 billion for data protection company Actifio. There were a lot more deals too, including activity by Hyundai, Cisco, NortonLifeLock, Facebook and more. Cybersecurity continues to a be big news, with McAfee suggesting losses from cyber crime in 2020 were $945 billion, doubling the amount in just two years. The breach of FireEye by a « state sponsored » hacker does little to help, given this was essentially a case of the best of the best being breached!
IT Industry News – November 2020
November 2020 continued the trend of M&A activity that we have seen these last few months, despite or perhaps because of the pandemic. The biggest deals this month saw Adobe shell out $1.5 billion for Workfront, Coupa Software paid $1.5 billon for Llamasoft; Telus International bought Lionbridge AI; and Palo Alto Networks paid $800 million Expanse. Security company FireEye bought Respond; Connectwise bought Perch Security, and IBM made a couple of acquisitions. There were plenty more deals including Cisco, Splunk, Ping Identity, Barracuda, StorCentric, and Acronis. Apple was in the news this month, settling a case related to their throttling performance on iPhones. Around the world we continue to deal with the pandemic. There is promising news of vaccines, which will bring some relief as they are rolled out. Economic indicators and job numbers have been improving for several months, but we are seeing rising cases and more lockdowns so the recovery is forecast to slow down.
IT Industry News – October 2020
The world is still in recession but there are indicators that things are improving. Employment numbers around the world are getting better, although they still have « a ways to go ». This month there were some big deals, with AMD’s $35 billion purchase of semiconductor company Xilinx being the biggest deal of the month. Another semiconductor deal saw South Korea’s SK Hynix pay $9 billion for Intel’s NAND flash memory division; and Juniper shelled out almost half a billion dollars for 128 Technology. Other deals saw Veeam pay $150 million for Kasten; and Cisco paid $100 million for Portshift. Accenture continued its 2020 acquisition blitz with several buys: Houston-based Myrtle Consulting Group, AWS consulting company Enimbos; Ottawa consulting firm Avenai; and New Zealand cloud migration company Zag. Cognizant bought AWS & IoT company Bright Wolf; Ping Identity bought block-chain security startup ShoCard; and ride sharing company Via bought Fleetonomy, a fleet management software company.
IT Industry News for September 2020
There was a fair amount of M&A activity in September 2020, with the biggest deal seeing Nvidia pay $40 billion for Arm. Microsoft paid $7.5 billion for Zenimax media and the other billion-dollar deal saw Ericson pay $1.1 billion for 5G specialist Cradlepoint. Pure Storage paid $270 million for Portworx; Progress Software paid $220 million for Devops company Chef; Crowdstrike paid $896 million for cybersecurity startup Preempt Security; and Compucenter paid $80 million for Pivot Technology Solutions. There were some other big names making deals, including VMware, Accenture, and Cognizant. Other companies in the news included HP, who paid $6 million to settle charges by the SEC; and both Amazon and UPS announced some significant hiring plans. Economies continue to struggle and unemployment numbers around the world are ugly, but there are signs of them improving with some positive signs from the US, Canada and the OECD, although we have a long way to go yet!
IT Industry News – August 2020
August 2020 was a quiet month on the M&A front with no blockbuster deals, but still a few worthy of mention. Accenture made their 20th acquisition this year, content production company CreativeDrive. Apple made an interesting small acquisition, Spaces; Equinix increased its footprint, paying $161 million for the Indian operations of GPX Global Systems; Kaseya bought Graphus and NTT Data Services added ServiceNow consultancy Acorio to its offerings. A number of companies announced layoffs this month including Dell, VMware, Oracle, Accenture, NetApp and Salesforce. In contrast, there are some winners in and amongst our new reality and one of them, Amazon, announced that it was adding 3,500 new tech and corporate jobs! Economies around the world continue to suffer and accumulate debt to help their populations cope. Canada’s GDP decline was 12% which puts it middle of the pack.
IT Industry News – July 2020
July 2020 saw HPE paying $925 million for SD WAN technology company Silver Peak. DXC sold its healthcare business for $525 million; Google bought Canadian smart glasses company North; Cisco bought video analytics company Modcam; VMware bought cloud disaster recovery company Datrium; Fortinet bought cloud security startup Opaq Networks; and Mimecast bought email security startup MessageControl. Uber, Acronis, and Advent International were also out buying. Huawei continues to be in the news and Twitter had an embarrassing leak. Finally, LinkedIn has announced layoffs associated with the pandemic. On the economic and jobs front, we are still in a period of huge uncertainty, though, there were some positive signs!
IT Industry News – June 2020
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.