Vietnamese tech firm FPT buys majority stake in US consultancy

18 July 2018

Vietnamese tech firm FPT has picked up a majority stake of US-based consultancy Intellinet in a deal worth up to $50 million.

In a move to expand its offerings, FPT Corp, which is one of Vietnam’s largest tech firms operating in the ICT services, retail, telecommunications and education sectors, has bought a 90 percent stake in the US-based tech-focused management consulting firm Intellinet – in a base-line deal worth $30 million and up to $50 million depending on performance.

The acquisition reflects the ever-increasing landscape of one-stop strategy consulting and implementation service providers in an era of technological transformation, which is seeing consultancies significantly beef up their tech lines and vice a versa, with FPT highlighting its goal on its website to be a pioneer in digitisation through ‘development, application and transfer.’

“(Having become) a technology partner of global enterprises in the Fourth Industrial Revolution, we realise that there exists a huge demand in digital transformation consultancy and implementation services,” FPT’s chairman Truong Gia Binh said. “By making a strategic investment in Intellinet, FPT is now more than ready to provide comprehensive digital transformation solutions for top companies, elevating Vietnam’s position on the global technology map.”Vietnamese tech firm FPT buys majority stake in US management consultancy“We are thrilled to join the FPT family” Mark Seeley, Intellinet’s CEO said in turn. “By combining our business acumen, industry expertise, and technology execution, our teams can deliver more innovation and transformational solutions that will truly make a measurable impact on our clients’ businesses.” Intellinet’s Founder & Chairman, Frank Bell, added; “I am excited to be a part of this transaction and the opportunity it creates to grow Intellinet into the global technology leader we have always believed it had the potential to become.”

With a current staff of around 150 advisors across five offices in the US, and 2017 revenues of $30 million, Intellinet will be able to tap into FTP’s established global network, which includes a headcount of 32,000 employees with nearly 14,000 tech specialists providing services in 33 countries – generating revenues of nearly $2 billion, while FTP will be able to expand its suite of complementary services to include expertise in strategy and management consulting – as well as open a larger gateway to the US; it’s second-largest software market.

Under the strategic equity agreement, Intellinet will continue to operate as an independent unit while leveraging its major shareholder’s strengths, with its 90 percent $30 million cash price-tag potentially extending to $50 million depending on the performance of its business consulting practice in the coming three years. Founded in 1993, Intellinet has in the recent past been considered one of the fastest growing tech advisories in the US based on revenues.

Beijing and Tokyo emerge as serious tech hub rivals to Silicon Valley

12 April 2019

As Silicon Valley struggles with a number of institutional issues, the location of the world’s top tech-hub may ultimately change – with Beijing and Tokyo emerging as serious contenders according to a survey conducted by KPMG.

Now into its seventh edition, KPMG’s Technology Industry Innovation Survey quizzed over 700 global tech executives on their thoughts on the future industry landscape – revealing that for the first time more than half of the respondents (58 percent) believe Silicon Valley will no longer be the technology innovation center of the world in just four years from now, with Beijing and Tokyo seen as two possible usurpers.

“Many factors affect a city’s perception as an innovation hub, including favorable government policies and incentives, accelerators, tech parks, corporate investment, state-of-the-art infrastructure and, in all cases, at least a few highly successful and wildly popular success stories,” said Peter Laco, an Executive Director at KPMG in Slovakia, of the previous survey.Top contenders for the next world-leading technology innovation hubWhile New York remains the most touted hot-spot among respondents, Beijing and Tokyo landed in the second and third spots as likely contenders for the global tech-hub crown, with seven Asian cities featuring among the top dozen; Shanghai (in equal 5th, but overtaken by Beijing), Taipei (in joint-5th as a notable riser), Singapore and Seoul (at 7th and 8th) and Hong Kong, which rounded out the top dozen. Shenzhen, meanwhile, has dropped outside the top 20.

With access to talent and quality infrastructure remaining key attributes for a successful hub, the report states that, despite all the positive business factors present in Silicon Valley, “an escalating cost of living, questions about diversity and corporate cultures, high business taxes, an overmatched infrastructure, and even increasing scrutiny into data privacy and other business practices are contributing to the perception that Silicon Valley may not continue to dominate.”

Still, the US (which also featured seven cities among the top 20) as a whole is still considered the country expected to produce the most disruptive technologies in the coming years, maintaining its top spot ahead of China despite a narrowing of the gap by two percentage points on last year (to 23 percent against 17 percent). The UK meanwhile has gained some separation on Japan in fourth, while Singapore, South Korea and India appear among the top ten.Countries that show the most promise for disruptive technologyTo gain further insight into the likelihood of a burgeoning tech-hub reaching the peak of the global pecking order, KPMG analysed the results of the survey against a range of other city indices, including A.T. Kearney’s 2018 Global Cities report and Mercer’s Quality of Living rankings – identifying Singapore as the most consistent Asia Pacific performer across the board, with Tokyo, Seoul, and Hong Kong lagging in a variety of areas.

“The belief that Silicon Valley will be displaced as the leading hub underscores the continuing decentralisation of technology innovation, spurred by investment in other cities and regions globally, as well as contributing factors in Silicon Valley,” says Tim Zanni, KPMG’s global technology sector leader. “Even when faced with pressing issues that call for funding, cities and countries are carving out significant investment to become a technology innovation hub due to an expected broad economic impact.”