Information Technology

Software, hardware and technology service businesses present unique management challenges. On one hand, new markets and competitors continue to emerge, driven by innovation around seven general themes:

  • IT architecture shifts (e.g. “thin” client, peer-to-peer, virtualized resources)
  • Emergence of new computing and communication platforms (e.g. smartphones)
  • Pure technical innovation (e.g. public key encryption, page rank algorithms, ATM switching)
  • New business models (e.g. software as a service, ad-sponsored search)
  • Emergence of new ways to communicate (e.g. IM, SMS, VoIP)
  • "Accessory" opportunities created in the wake of platform success, such as platform specific utilities
  • New applications generated by business processes or consumer activities shifting to IT – supported models (e.g. service parts logistics)

The examples change every year – and in some industries more frequently – but the themes are perennial, and change is constant. In general though, the new supplements rather than supplants the old, resulting in an increasingly complex landscape. In parallel to this continued innovation, many "older" swaths of the high-tech industry are maturing, following the same classic patterns seen in other industries:
  • Increasing competitor concentration
  • More incremental product innovation
  • Increasing customer segment specialization
  • Globalization
  • Migration to lower-cost channels
  • (De)regulation
  • Architectural, platform, format and business model shifts
  • Growing role of private equity firms in restructuring industry segments facing growth challenges

We work with clients in computer software and hardware, semiconductor, IT services, storage, components and peripherals segments.