WashingtonExec 2015 Market Outlook Series
We look forward to a new year and new opportunities for innovation and growth in the government contracting community. This past year, we experienced an increased emphasis on cybersecurity, the government’s procurement process and a perpetual focus on doing more with less.
WashingtonExec reached out to those most knowledgeable and experienced 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 2015. Topics discussed include M&A activity, cloud computing, privacy issues, data collection, healthcare IT, defense and more.
Northwind Partners Managing Partner Mark HuYoung believes more companies will begin to leverage meaningful analytics to address various issues across sectors where they are only just emerging or non-existent.
Mark HuYoung: Thankfully, 2015 looks to be a busy year for everyone. Out of the gates, our firm is covered up with leadership rebuilds, replacements, successions and additions, which tells me that the market is really done holding its breath. Companies are picking up both sword and shield and actively participating in this competitive arena. I’ve been encouraged during the past few years by the resilience, determination and optimism of so many executives in a tough and, sometimes demoralizing, environment. It has allowed great, focused leaders and genuinely engaged organizations to rise to the top.
With a significant amount of work originating from financial sponsors, we see those clients continue to be very active with new fundraises or branching out to start new firms. Capital needs to be put to work and GovCon-savvy sponsors, or otherwise, will continue to invest. Ever-increasing competition, especially in the growth to mid-market, is a major factor in almost every deal observed pushing multiples higher.
Also, I’ve decided to give up on predicting government movement (see also: New Year’s resolutions, guessing what my wife and daughters are thinking, and anything containing gluten). Conjecture regarding budgets or collaboration to tackle tough issues is akin to trying to find a polar bear in a blizzard. Smarter folks than me are employing brainpower to address that topic. Of course, it’s probably also safe to say we are headed into an election year and any up/down decision making should be minimal (okay, that’s a half-attempt at a broad forecast).
With Snowden, Sony and various other scenarios that have or are yet to occur, security is a huge issue (and I’m afraid it will end up pushing privacy aside). At the convergence of analytics, we see companies focused on building or acquiring security solutions that takes on a more holistic, predictive form. I believe we will see more companies begin to leverage meaningful analytics to address various issues (i.e. physical security, fraud/waste/abuse, workforce efficiency, consumer habits, etc.) across sectors where they are only just emerging or non-existent. It’s exciting to see companies build new solutions and new companies enter markets. The constant change and transformation happening around the Beltway gives us the opportunity to be storytellers sharing insight on the good, bad, and ugly.