June 08, 2018
Accenture to Expand Industry X.0 Capabilities with Acquisition of Designaffairs to Create Smart Products and Services
KRONBERG and MUNICH; June 8, 2018 – Accenture (NYSE: ACN) has entered into an agreement to acquire designaffairs, a strategic design consultancy headquartered in Germany. The acquisition will bolster the capabilities of Accenture Industry X.0 to design smart products and services that are ready for manufacturing – complementing its offerings around smart products, smart services, platforms, and new business models for the digital reinvention of industrial companies.
Founded in 1997, designaffairs today employs more than 100 professionals in studios in Munich and Erlangen (Germany), Shanghai (China) and Portland, Ore. (United States). The firm offers services comprising industrial, user interface, and material design; interaction innovation; mechanical and usability engineering; prototyping; design research, and brand strategy.
The acquisition of designaffairs will bolster the capabilities of Accenture Industry X.0 to
design smart products and services that are ready for manufacturing
Examples of designaffairs’ client work include the Hyundai Driver Information System with its three-dimensional touch interface, Siemens’ Somatom Force CT scanner, and Nescafé’s Milano cloud coffee machine. Designaffairs’ work has been recognized with 300+ awards to date including the prestigious iF Design Award and Red Dot Design Award.
By joining Accenture’s Industry X.0 practice, designaffairs will become part of Accenture’s growing network of studios. Accenture studios, which are part of the Accenture Innovation Architecture, specialize in the ideation, design, and prototyping of digitally-enabled smart products, smart services, and customer experiences, which are at the heart of Accenture’s Industry X.0 value proposition.
Frank Riemensperger, senior country managing director, Accenture Austria, Switzerland, Germany, and Russia, said, “Designaffairs excels at helping clients reinvent products and the product experience, which is the prerequisite for building new business models and creating growth from digital. Their expertise, track record and market presence will strengthen our capabilities around industry digitization – especially in Germany and in China, two key markets for Industry X.0.”
Andrew Smith, managing director and Accenture Industry X.0 Austria, Switzerland, Germany, and Russia lead, said, “The acquisition of designaffairs will complement the other investments we have made to build our innovation, design, and product development capabilities. We continue to make significant progress with building a world-class service organization that can deliver large industry digitization projects end-to-end.”
Following completion of the acquisition, designaffairs CEO Nico Michler will continue to lead the business along with Prof. Michael Lanz, managing director and Munich studio lead, Gerd Helmreich, managing director and Erlangen studio lead, as well as Lidan Liu and Moritz Ludwig, who lead the Shanghai studio.
Nico Michler said, “At designaffairs, we take pride in designing and delivering award-winning connected products and intelligent services that improve the way humans work and live. Our people define themselves as explorers that strive to make a real impact for our clients. Becoming a part of Accenture and its Industry X.0 business will allow us to take our creative work to the next level and together deliver ready-made smart products and services for a range of industries.”
Accenture’s Industry X.0 vision has been recognized by leading industry analyst firms, most recently in Everest Group’s IoT Services Peak Matrix.
The acquisition is subject to customary closing conditions. The terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Accenture is a leading global professional services company, providing a broad range of services and solutions in strategy, consulting, digital, technology and operations. Combining unmatched experience and specialized skills across more than 40 industries and all business functions – underpinned by the world’s largest delivery network – Accenture works at the intersection of business and technology to help clients improve their performance and create sustainable value for their stakeholders. With approximately 442,000 people serving clients in more than 120 countries, Accenture drives innovation to improve the way the world works and lives. Visit us at www.accenture.com.
Accenture Industry X.0 helps businesses master the digital reinvention of industry when they use advanced digital technologies to transform core operations and unlock new revenue streams and business models. We support every aspect of our clients’ multi-phase transformation including workforce, customer experience, R&D, engineering, manufacturing, business support and ecosystems. Visit www.accenture.com/industry-x0.
Except for the historical information and discussions contained herein, statements in this news release may constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Words such as “may,” “will,” “should,” “likely,” “anticipates,” “expects,” “intends,” “plans,” “projects,” “believes,” “estimates,” “positioned,” “outlook” and similar expressions are used to identify these forward-looking statements. These statements involve a number of risks, uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied. These include, without limitation, risks that: Accenture and designaffairs will not be able to close the transaction in the time period anticipated, or at all, which is dependent on the parties’ ability to satisfy certain closing conditions; the transaction might not achieve the anticipated benefits for Accenture; Accenture’s results of operations could be adversely affected by volatile, negative or uncertain economic and political conditions and the effects of these conditions on the company’s clients’ businesses and levels of business activity; Accenture’s business depends on generating and maintaining ongoing, profitable client demand for the company’s services and solutions including through the adaptation and expansion of its services and solutions in response to ongoing changes in technology and offerings, and a significant reduction in such demand or an inability to respond to the changing technological environment could materially affect the company’s results of operations; if Accenture is unable to keep its supply of skills and resources in balance with client demand around the world and attract and retain professionals with strong leadership skills, the company’s business, the utilization rate of the company’s professionals and the company’s results of operations may be materially adversely affected; Accenture could have liability or Accenture’s reputation could be damaged if the company fails to protect client and/or company data from security breaches or cyberattacks; the markets in which Accenture operates are highly competitive, and Accenture might not be able to compete effectively; Accenture’s profitability could materially suffer if the company is unable to obtain favourable pricing for its services and solutions, if the company is unable to remain competitive, if its cost-management strategies are unsuccessful or if it experiences delivery inefficiencies; changes in Accenture’s level of taxes, as well as audits, investigations and tax proceedings, or changes in tax laws or in their interpretation or enforcement, could have a material adverse effect on the company’s effective tax rate, results of operations, cash flows and financial condition; Accenture’s results of operations could be materially adversely affected by fluctuations in foreign currency exchange rates; Accenture’s business could be materially adversely affected if the company incurs legal liability; Accenture’s work with government clients exposes the company to additional risks inherent in the government contracting environment; Accenture might not be successful at identifying, acquiring, investing in or integrating businesses, entering into joint ventures or divesting businesses; Accenture’s global delivery capability is concentrated in India and the Philippines, which may expose it to operational risks; as a result of Accenture’s geographically diverse operations and its growth strategy to continue geographic expansion, the company is more susceptible to certain risks; adverse changes to Accenture’s relationships with key alliance partners or in the business of its key alliance partners could adversely affect the company’s results of operations; if Accenture is unable to protect its intellectual property rights or if Accenture’s services or solutions infringe upon the intellectual property rights of others or the company loses its ability to utilize the intellectual property of others, its business could be adversely affected; Accenture’s ability to attract and retain business and employees may depend on its reputation in the marketplace; if Accenture is unable to manage the organizational challenges associated with its size, the company might be unable to achieve its business objectives; any changes to the estimates and assumptions that Accenture makes in connection with the preparation of its consolidated financial statements could adversely affect its financial results; many of Accenture’s contracts include payments that link some of its fees to the attainment of performance or business targets and/or require the company to meet specific service levels, which could increase the variability of the company’s revenues and impact its margins; Accenture’s results of operations and share price could be adversely affected if it is unable to maintain effective internal controls; Accenture might be unable to access additional capital on favorable terms or at all and if the company raises equity capital, it may dilute its shareholders’ ownership interest in the company; Accenture may be subject to criticism and negative publicity related to its incorporation in Ireland; as well as the risks, uncertainties and other factors discussed under the “Risk Factors” heading in Accenture plc’s most recent annual report on Form 10-K and other documents filed with or furnished to the Securities and Exchange Commission. 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