NTT DATA has moved one step closer to becoming the world’s fifth-largest systems integrator.
In late March, the systems integration company, which currently ranks No. 6 in the world, announced plans to acquire Dell Services, accelerating the company’s ascent as a global IT services partner.
“When you look at what this [Dell Services acquisition] does for us – in the U.S. alone we are projected to be a $5 billion IT services company, part of a Top 10 Global IT services business,” says Tim Conway, president, public sector for NTT DATA.
The acquisition, when complete, will benefit federal customers, says Conway, noting they typically see acquisitions focused, in a series of federal pure plays, on where government IT needs currently stand. NTT DATA plans a different approach, says Conway.
“What we can do, and what we are putting together, is to provide the services, the innovation, and to a large degree, the re-imagination that’s necessary to take the government to where it is going in the future,” says Conway.
That goal includes addressing ever-mounting needs in healthcare and cybersecurity, of course – and leading with innovation driven by the commercial sector.
“If you think of topics such as ‘digital disruption,’ ‘cloud ecosystems,’ and ‘operational effectiveness’ – those are really being driven out of commercial IT and investments that commercial companies are making in technology,” says Conway.
While Apple naturally comes to mind, NTT DATA doesn’t plan to be far behind.
“If you look at the investments we can make, as NTT Group, we already spend about $2 billion a year in R&D and we recently opened an innovation/applied R&D center [NTT Innovation Institute] in Silicon Valley that’s available to support our client’s emerging needs,” says Conway.
While integration, on the heels of the pending Dell Services acquisition, is still a ways off – “we’ve got to get through all the regulatory and closing activities before we really get to the integration point,” says Conway— the acquisition speaks to a larger growth strategy the company has been executing for more than 10 years.
With roots dating back to 1967, NTT DATA has steadily risen from its early days as a data communications business to one of the world’s largest IT services companies, headquartered in Japan.
Over the past decade, especially, the company has grown at a rapid clip, acquiring a series of diverse companies worldwide.
Laying the groundwork, the company widened its worldwide IT expertise reach by obtaining BS 7799 certification, an international information security standard, in 2001. That was followed, in 2008, by the acquisition of the German-based IT, consulting and professional services firm Cirquent.
More acquisitions followed, in 2010: First, with the Boston-based IT services firm Keane, followed by the Bangalore-based company FirstApex (thereby expanding NTT DATA’s presence in the insurance industry through enterprise-wide software solutions), and with the U.S.-based Intelligroup, an enterprise software implementation firm with a substantial presence in India.
Subsequent acquisitions, between 2011 and 2015, continued NTT DATA’s pace of growth. Now comes Dell Services.
“Dell Services is the next chapter of our strategy,” says Conway, noting the unique nature of the acquisition.
“Oftentimes in acquisitions you see a fair amount of overlap,” adds Conway. In this case, he notes, the new level of offerings is tangible.
“When you look at what we are at our core – we hold strong depth of experience in advisory services and application innovation, as well as some infrastructure services – all those capabilities are bolstered by Dell Services, which holds tremendous depth in secure infrastructure, cloud services and DTO (data transfer object) services,” says Conway.
The end result, he adds, is expected to be the ability to give “end-to-end IT systems integration offering that is ‘best of breed’ in the market – from that perspective, we are really excited.”
Those benefits extend to NTT DATA’s work in the U.S. government marketplace (the company also works with public sector clients in Latin America, Europe, the Middle East and Asia Pacific).
To date, NTT DATA Federal Services has secured prime contract vehicles with agencies such as the General Services Administration, the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security.
With the Dell Services acquisition, NTT DATA gains a new roster of federal customers. Currently, Dell Services has a strong presence with a wide variety of agencies, including the Center for Disease Control (CDC), the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission and defense agencies.
“They [Dell Services] also do quite a bit of healthcare in the federal space, while our healthcare footprint is small, by comparison,” says Conway.
That complementary pairing, adds Conway, will be a boon for federal customers.
“If you think of healthcare, if you think of cyber terrorism, and the events going on – that’s where the investments that we are making will really resonate,” says Conway.
So what’s next?
While the Dell Services acquisition is still months away from completion, one thing’s certain: Conway’s public sector unit plans to meet customers at the intersection of now and tomorrow, in one very specific place: where the future of government is going.