WashingtonExec 2014 Market Outlook Series
As we turn the page on 2013, we look forward to a new year and new opportunities for innovation and growth in the government contracting community. This past year we experienced budget sequestration, a 16-day-long government shutdown, and a perpetually increasing focus on cyber security and healthcare IT.
WashingtonExec reached out to those most knowledgeable and experienced individuals in the federal contracting space. We asked executives in and around the beltway for insight regarding where they see the government contracting community headed in 2014. Topics discussed include M&A activity, cloud computing, healthcare IT, defense, mobility, and more.
Larry Besterman is the President & CEO of TWD & Associates, Inc., a leading-edge unified communications, infrastructure and communications, enterprise information technology, cybersecurity systems, and collaboration solutions company for executive-level, national security-focused organizations.
I think 2014 likely will look a lot like 2013 with respect to the challenges and opportunities facing government contractors. The recent headwinds of tightening budgets and increased scrutiny on government interaction with vendors will continue to shape the competitive playing field, making opportunities to grow organically more challenging due to fewer bidding opportunities and more players competing for the pieces of a slightly shrinking pie. That said the clouds of fiscal uncertainty from the continuing political stalemate have cleared a little, which should allow agencies to move forward with acquisition plans more efficiently than they could in 2013.
Organic growth in 2014, much like recent years, will depend on the ability of companies to leverage new technologies that allow the government customer to reduce costs without requiring significant upfront capital investment. I believe we will continue to see growth in service-based technologies such as cloud computing as well as other technologies that have similar capabilities. I predict Unified Communications delivered in an “as-a-service” model (UCaaS) has the potential to grow dramatically in 2014 as a key enabler of collaboration throughout the government. UCaaS is easy to implement and use and will help agencies reduce travel costs and more effectively deliver tools to enable telework and mobility.
M&A will continue to be strong due to favorable financing terms, plenty of available capital and the desire of public and private equity-backed companies to show growth when it can’t be achieved organically.