Booth’s bulletpoint bulletin
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Booth’s bulletpoint bulletin

ICT industry consultant Paul Booth keeps you abreast of the deals and developments in the local and international space 

 
International deals
 
Accenture has agreed to purchase Maihiro, a German-based CRM consulting firm; the Apis Group, an Australian consultancy providing digital design and delivery services to government organisations; and Bow & Arrow, a UK-based digital ventures consultancy. Accenture has also entered into an agreement to acquire Symantec’s Cyber Security Services business from Broadcom as well as Clarity Insights, a US-based data science, AI and machine learning consultancy.
 
Adobe plans to acquire Oculus Medium, a VR tool created in Facebook’s Oculus division that allows users to sculpt, model and paint in a VR environment.

Amazon bought Health Navigator, a digital health technology company.
 
American Tower has closed its previously announced $1.85 billion acquisition of Eaton Towers.
 
Apple bought UK-based startup Spectral Edge, which has developed technology to improve photos taken on iPhones, and Xnor.ai, an AI company, for $200 million.
 
Broadcom bought Bay Dynamics, a cyber risk analytics software provider.
 
Check Point Software has purchased Protego, a serverless security company, and Cymplify, an IoT security vendor.
 
Cisco acquired Exablaze, an Australia-based company that designs and builds advanced networking gear based on field programmable gate arrays.
 
ConnectWise bought Continuum, another MSP (both owned by Thoma Bravo), and ITBoost, maker of a documentation tool.
 
Dell-owned Boomi has agreed to acquire Unifi Software.
 
DXC Technology purchased Australia-based Blueliner, a CX consulting company, and the outstanding shares of Virtual Clarity, a provider of IT-as-a-Service transformation advisory services.
 
F5 Networks has agreed to purchase Shape Security, a privately held cyber security company, in a deal worth $1 billion.
 
Facebook has agreed to buy Beat Games, developer of the VR rhythm game Beat Saber, and has bought PlayGiga, a Spanish cloud gaming startup, and Packagd, a small video shopping startup.
 
Fortinet purchased CyberSponse, a security orchestration, automation and response platform provider, and enSilo, an advanced endpoint security company.
 
Google has acquired AppSheet, a no-code application development platform; CloudSimple, a provider of secure, high-performance, dedicated environments to run VMware workloads in the cloud; and Canada-based game developer Typhoon Studios. It also intends to acquire Pointy, a retail startup that lets brick-and-mortar retailers list inventory online. Google has also entered a definitive agreement to acquire Fitbit, the wearable device maker for $2.1 billion.

Hitachi Vantara has agreed to buy Waterline Data, a startup developer of intelligent data cataloguing technology.
 
Insight Partners will buy data management and backup specialist Veeam in a transaction valued at about $5 billion.
 
Insight Partners will also buy Armis, a cyber security firm, for $1.1 billion.
 
Intel bought AI chip startup Habana Labs for $2 billion.
 
Microsoft bought Canada-based Mover, a cloud file migration company.
 
Mimecast acquired Segasec, a provider of digital threat protection, and DMARC Analyzer, a SaaS-based solution provider.
 
NTT Data Services purchased Flux7, a small AWS premier consulting partner.
 
Open Text has agreed to purchase Carbonite, a provider of dataprotection services, for about $1.42 billion.
 
Panasonic will sell its loss-making semiconductor business to Taiwan’s Nuvoton Technology for $250 million and will also divest three Japanese chipmaking facilities of TowerJazz Panasonic Semiconductor, a joint venture with Israel's Tower Semiconductor.
 
Sage Group has entered into an agreement to sell its Sage Pay business to Elavon Financial Services for £232 million.
 
Samsung Electronics bought US-based TeleWorld Solutions, a network services provider, and alongside the UAE government, led a $55 million investment in US quantum computing startup IonQ.
 
ServiceNow has agreed to acquire Loom Systems, an Israeli startup that uses AI to predict and prevent IT problems.
 
Siemens bought Intel-backed startup Pixeom’s edge computing platform, in a deal that includes Pixeom's assets and employees, but not the business itself.
 
Sonos purchased Snips SAS, an AI voice control platform for connected devices.
 
Tech Mahindra acquired the Born Group, a commerce and CX agency, in a deal worth $95 million.
 
•  Trend Micro purchased Cloud Conformity, an innovative cloud security posture management company.
 
Veeam has sold its N2WS business, which it acquired less than two years ago, in response to US government concerns.
 
VMware plans to buy Nyansa, an AI-based networking startup backed by Intel Capital.
 
Workday has agreed to buy Scout RFP, a cloud-based platform for sourcing and supplier engagement, in a deal worth $540 million.
 
Xerox Holdings and Fujifilm Holdings have agreed to end a 57-year-old joint venture, with the former selling its 25% stake in the venture, Fuji Xerox, to Fujifilm for $2.2 billion.
 
 
International developments
 
Intel has filed an anti-trust lawsuit against a SoftBank Group-owned investment company, alleging the firm stockpiled patents to hold up technology companies with numerous lawsuits.
 
China has, for the first time, included the internet industry in an envisioned overhaul of its anti-monopoly laws, potentially giving regulators the power to rein in the country’s increasingly dominant technology giants. China has also set up a new national semiconductor fund of $28.9 billion, as it seeks to nurture its domestic chip industry.
 
Symantec has rebranded as NortonLifeLock.
 
US trade regulators will investigate wearable monitoring devices, including those made by Fitbit and Garmin, following allegations of patent violations by Koninklijke.
 
US regulators have labelled Chinese telecommunications firms Huawei and ZTE a ‘national security threat’ and voted to ban them from a federal subsidy programme.
 
 
Big tech
 
Alphabet has joined the $1 trillion market valuation milestone, joining Amazon, Apple and Microsoft.
 
• Several dozen attorneys-general investigating advertising practices at Alphabet's Google are planning to expand their anti-trust probe into the unit's flagship Android business.
 
Amazon has filed a lawsuit in a federal US court contesting the US Defence Department's decision to award a $10 billion cloud computing contract to Microsoft.
 
Apple faces more regulatory woes in Europe, as EU antitrust regulators ask online sales companies whether they have been told to use the former’s mobile payment service instead of rival services.
 
Australia announced that technology giants such as Facebook and Google will have to agree to new rules to ensure they don’t abuse their market power and damage competition.
 
The European Data Protection Supervisor announced Microsoft’s contracts with European Union institutions do not fully protect data in line with EU law.
 
Facebook has agreed to pay a £500 000 fine for breaches of data protection law related to the harvesting of data by consultancy Cambridge Analytica.
 
Sonos accused Google of stealing its technology and infringing on its patents.

• A US federal regulator has initiated an investigation into a cloud computing deal between Google and Ascension Health, which would give Google access to detailed health information of millions of patients.
 
The US is investigating whether Google has abused its power, including it being the biggest broker of digital advertising sales across the web.
 
 
Local deals
 
Altron acquired Ubusha Technologies, a next-generation IT security services provider, for R360 million.
 
• Cape Town-based coding project codeX will receive half of the $1 million Google has committed to non-profits and social enterprises in SA.
 
CipherWave has agreed to purchase Rain’s Broadlink telecommunications business.
 
Dimension Data has sold its head office, The Campus, to a black women-owned company.
 
EOH Abantu has entered into an agreement with Afrocentric Health for its shares in Dental Information Systems Holdings for R250 million.
 
Five Elms Capital, a US-based software investor, is investing $30 million in Skynamo, a South African field sales app and management platform provider.
 
Kerlink, a specialist in IoT solutions, has expanded into SA with a distribution agreement with IoTdc.
 
Link Africa, a wholesale fibre telecommunications network provider, bought additional nationwide fibre-optic network infrastructure from Internet Solutions, giving it more than 400 points of presence across SA.
 
SBA Communications acquired Atlas Tower’s South African tower portfolio for R2 billion.
 
 
Local developments
 
• Kenyan internet provider BRCK will launch its free internet service in SA, having become the largest supplier of public WiFi in Sub-Saharan Africa.
 
Datacentrix is involved in a dispute with its black economic empowerment partner, The IT Advantage, which accuses Datacentrix of anti-competitive and corporate bullying practices.
 
Dimension Data MEA has launched a new security services subsidiary, Dimension Data Security.
 
• Communications and digital technologies minister Stella Ndabeni- Abrahams announced administrators for SITA and USAASA for a period of 24 months; the merger of Sentech and Broadband Infraco into a new state infrastructure company; and the merger of ICASA, the Film and Publication Board and the ZA Domain Name Authority.
 
• Ireland-based Openet, which provides digital business support systems to telcos, has set up an office in Johannesburg.
 
Yekani Manufacturing, a R1 billion smart factory in the Eastern Cape, is facing liquidation.
 
 
African developments
 
Angola Cables and Nokia have collaborated to provide a direct optical connection between Africa and North America.
 
Egypt has launched its first communication satellite into orbit.

Liquid Telecom has launched a terrestrial telecoms link to connect East and West Africa.
 
Orange has opened its African HQ in Morocco. It has also completed its sale of its Orange Niger division to Zamani Com SAS company.
 
Orange will launch a new fibre backbone network in West Africa, comprising both terrestrial and subsea infrastructure to dramatically boost connectivity in the region.
 
Nigeria’s attorney general has dropped its $2 billion tax demand on MTN.
 
Vodafone Ghana acquired Vodacom Group's entire stake in Vodacom Business Ghana.
 
Xiaomi has set up a business headquarters in Africa.
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