EMERGING TECHNOLOGY

IBM to Acquire Octo

IBM | December 08, 2022 | Read time : 04:00 min

IBM to Acquire News
IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced an agreement to acquire Octo, a U.S.-based IT modernization and digital transformation services provider exclusively serving the U.S. federal government, including defense, health, and civilian agencies. IBM's acquisition of Octo establishes one of the largest digital transformation partners to the federal government. Upon the close of the acquisition, Octo's approximately 1,500 employees will join IBM Consulting's U.S. public and federal market organization.

Octo will be IBM's eighth acquisition of 2022. Since Arvind Krishna became CEO of IBM in April 2020, IBM has acquired more than 25 companies, bolstering its hybrid cloud and artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities. Today's news builds on prior IBM Consulting acquisitions, including Dialexa, Neudesic, and Taos. 

Federal government agencies face significant challenges including technology skills shortages, rebuilding of U.S. domestic supply chains and more demand for citizen services. To address these complex challenges, agencies need an industry partner to help them navigate a scalable path to IT modernization with the power to leverage emerging technologies and applications, optimize costs and operational efficiencies, and improve security. The convergence of new hybrid cloud and AI technologies enables government to deliver rapid improvements and adapt to unprecedented challenges.

The acquisition of Reston, Va.-based Octo will complement IBM's existing strengths in IT modernization and digital transformation, enhancing its ability to support federal agencies with a flexible, modern approach to digital transformation and growing IBM Consulting's public and federal market organization to 4,200 highly-skilled employees. With a proven track record of enabling rapid IT modernization and seamless citizen engagement, Octo also brings deep federal mission experience, as well as certifications in the technologies most used across the federal government.

"Governments require agility and resiliency to meet the evolving needs of citizens directly and in real time," said John Granger, Senior Vice President of IBM Consulting. "The combination of Octo's highly qualified and respected team with IBM's consulting expertise, technical capabilities and strategic partner ecosystem will enable federal clients to transform faster and better serve citizens."

Building on a shared commitment to co-creation, oLabs, Octo's 14,000 square foot innovation center with in-house computing capability, expands IBM's ability to work collaboratively with federal agencies to rapidly prototype emerging technology solutions – enabling greater impact for federal agencies and the people they serve.

"Octo was founded on the belief that digital transformation could be delivered at scale to modernize the federal government's approach to today's most pressing challenges – from public healthcare to national security, to defense and intelligence," said Mehul Sanghani, Chief Executive Officer of Octo. "Today, we are excited to join forces with IBM to continue to deliver these digital transformation capabilities with greater reach and scale."

IBM's acquisition of Octo from Arlington Capital Partners is expected to close in the fourth quarter of this year and is subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory clearances. Financial details of the deal were not disclosed.

About IBM
IBM is a leading provider of global hybrid cloud and AI, and consulting expertise. We help clients in more than 175 countries capitalize on insights from their data, streamline business processes, reduce costs and gain the competitive edge in their industries. More than 4,000 government and corporate entities in critical infrastructure areas such as financial services, telecommunications and healthcare rely on IBM's hybrid cloud platform and Red Hat OpenShift to affect their digital transformations quickly, efficiently and securely. IBM's breakthrough innovations in AI, quantum computing, industry-specific cloud solutions and consulting deliver open and flexible options to our clients. All of this is backed by IBM's legendary commitment to trust, transparency, responsibility, inclusivity and service. Visit www.ibm.com for more information.

Spotlight

For the first time in 17 years, the government is partially shutdown until Congress can reach a budget deal. Although the government has shut down, some important services, like mail delivery and military protection, are still getting done. But hundreds of thousands of federal government employees, including those that conduct science research or run the nation's national parks and monuments, are furloughed. That means they have to stay off the job, their pay withheld, until a deal is reached. Above, watch a video from TIME to get answers to some of your questions about the government shutdown.

Spotlight

For the first time in 17 years, the government is partially shutdown until Congress can reach a budget deal. Although the government has shut down, some important services, like mail delivery and military protection, are still getting done. But hundreds of thousands of federal government employees, including those that conduct science research or run the nation's national parks and monuments, are furloughed. That means they have to stay off the job, their pay withheld, until a deal is reached. Above, watch a video from TIME to get answers to some of your questions about the government shutdown.

Related News

CYBERSECURITY

UK Government Approves Nine Entrust Solutions for G-Cloud 13 Program, including nShield as a Service

Entrust | November 08, 2022

Entrust, a global leader in trusted payments, identities and digital infrastructure, has had nine of its cloud and associated support services approved for the G-Cloud Framework. This platform enables public bodies in the UK to procure commodity-based, pay-as-you-go cloud services on government-approved, short-term contracts through an online catalogue called the Digital Marketplace. This streamlined procurement process supports the UK government’s ‘Cloud First’ policy and is a key component in the government's ambition to operate a cloud-native digital architecture. The Entrust services that are available on the latest iteration of the framework, G-Cloud 13 are as follows: Entrust nShield as a Service – cloud Hardware Security Modules Public Key Infrastructure (PKI), as either: Managed PKI – A bespoke & dedicated PKI without the need for in-house expertise PKI as a Service (PKIaaS) – Cloud based turnkey PKI SSL Certificates (through our partner Conosco) Identity as a Service (IDaaS) – Identity & Access Management with a broad array of authenticators Managed Certificate Hub – Certificate Lifecycle Management for public and private Certificate Authorities in your enterprise Managed Root Certificate Authority – high assurance Root of Trust for your PKI Managed Microsoft PKI – A managed bespoke and dedicated PKI within Azure Cloud support consultancy – design, onboarding, cryptography and PKI health checks for Entrust G-Cloud services The need to authenticate the identity of people, systems and things is challenging and growing. With the launch of G-Cloud 13, and the inclusion of these nine services from Entrust, government departments and agencies in the UK Public Sector can leverage these solutions to enable secure transactions. As an annually revised platform, G-Cloud 13 will go live on 9 November 2022 and is due to end at 23:59 on the 8 November 2023. Specifically, the addition of nShield as a Service to this roster facilitates UK public sector organizations moving their infrastructure into the cloud while maintaining control of their data security with master keys protected in a hardware security module (HSM), as is best practice. “The UK Government G-Cloud program is a way for public sector organisations to purchase cloud based IT solutions from approved, secure providers. Many of these organisations are looking to move as much of their infrastructure into the cloud as possible and need many of the Entrust cloud solutions to support the security requirements. With Entrust cloud solutions, we give you the capability along with the comfort that, strong controls and governance are consistently applied.” -Robert Hann, Vice President of Centre of Expertise for Entrust Digital Security Solutions. Entrust delivers UK Public Sector organisations G-Cloud approved solutions that ensure that you have a robust, secure and scalable combination of solutions to meet your data protection requirements. This cloud-native framework can help customers who are seeking to reduce their on premises data centre footprint and have more flexibility by replacing big capital outlay with a more predictable and flexible subscription payment model. Furthermore, with a selection of managed and “as-a-Service” solutions from Entrust, customers who are lacking the in-house expertise to manage their identity management or data protection solutions can safely leave it to the experts at Entrust.. About Entrust: Entrust keeps the world moving safely by enabling trusted experiences for identities, payments, and digital infrastructure. We offer an unmatched breadth of solutions that are critical to enabling trust for multi-cloud deployments, mobile identities, hybrid work, machine identity, electronic signatures, encryption and more. With more than 2,800 colleagues, a network of global partners, and customers in over 150 countries, it’s no wonder the world’s most entrusted organisations trust us.

Read More

CYBERSECURITY

WalkMe Joins UK Government's G-Cloud Digital Marketplace

WalkMe | November 09, 2022

WalkMe Ltd. (NASDAQ: WKME), a leading provider of digital adoption solutions, today announced its approval to join the G-Cloud Digital Marketplace by the Crown Commercial Service of the UK government. WalkMe is now a part of the G-Cloud 13 initiative, a centralized hub for the streamlined procurement of cloud-related IT services and technologies by public sector organizations such as central and local governments, non-profit organizations, education, defense, and emergency and health services. The G-Cloud Marketplace reduces the complex requirements to purchase IT by centralizing the vendor qualification process. There is an urgent need to deliver more and better services quicker with tighter budgets in the National Healthcare Service (NHS) and across the British government. WalkMe's digital adoption platform (DAP) provides customised on screen guidance and automation to realise the promise of digital technology while improving the employee and end user experience as well as overall programme efficiency. WalkMe's DAP not only increases the adoption of digital technologies, but also levels the playing field for citizens with varying degrees of digital dexterity making for more equitable access to government services. The platform can identify usage inefficiencies so that solutions can be deployed to improve adoption and overall user experience while providing unprecedented data insights to continuously improve. Improving the adoption of digital technologies in the public sector will make services more accessible, reduce pressure on contact centers as end users opt for on screen help and automation, and lower staff attrition as employees can use their digital tools more easily and efficiently. "We are honored to join the G-Cloud Digital Marketplace and do our part to strengthen government-citizen relationships through enhanced user experience and accessibility, We look forward to playing a role in the improvement of the digital citizen experience across the UK and to discover the innovative ways public sector organizations will use WalkMe technology to drive efficiency, save money, and elevate the experience for end users across the board." -Simon Blunn, Senior Vice President & General Manager EMEA, WalkMe. About WalkMe: WalkMe's cloud-based digital adoption platform enables organizations to measure, drive and act to ultimately accelerate their digital transformations and better realize the value of their software investments. Our code-free platform leverages our proprietary technology to provide visibility to an organization's Chief Information Officer and business leaders, while improving user experience, productivity and efficiency for employees and customers. Alongside walkthroughs and third-party integration capabilities, our platform can be customized to fit an organization's needs.

Read More

GOVERNMENT BUSINESS

U.S. Department of Defense Awards $50 Million Contract to Kodiak Robotics for Autonomous U.S. Army Ground Reconnaissance Vehicles

Kodiak Robotics | December 07, 2022

Kodiak Robotics, Inc., a leading self-driving trucking company, today announced it has been awarded a $49.9 million, 24-month United States Department of Defense (DoD) agreement to help automate future U.S. Army ground vehicles led by the Army's Robotic Combat Vehicle (RCV) program. This effort will be in support of vehicles designed for reconnaissance, surveillance, and other high-risk missions. Through this award, which started in October 2022 and was awarded by DoD's Defense Innovation Unit (DIU) on behalf of the Army's RCV program office, Kodiak will leverage its commercial self-driving software to develop, test and deploy autonomous capabilities for driverless vehicles that further strengthen national security. Kodiak will develop autonomous vehicle technology for the Army to navigate complex terrain, diverse operational conditions and GPS-challenged environments, while also providing the Army the ability to remotely operate vehicles when necessary. Wartime is extraordinarily complex with high-risk challenges that often result in troops operating near or behind enemy lines. Deploying autonomous vehicles to perform such critical and dangerous tasks has the potential to significantly reduce the risk to troops, while giving them greater access to the information they need in the field. Additionally, the remote driving capabilities Kodiak will develop for the Army will increase the flexibility of these autonomous vehicles, while further reducing risk for soldiers. The project will also provide a technical pipeline that will enable the rapid development and deployment of new autonomous vehicle technologies as they become commercially available. "I started Kodiak because I believe autonomous technology can save lives, and helping the U.S. Army develop driverless vehicles for the most challenging operating environments fits perfectly with that goal, We are proud to have the opportunity to leverage our cutting-edge self-driving technology for defense applications, and believe our work with DIU and the U.S. Army will both help strengthen national security and hasten our path to commercial deployment. We owe a debt of gratitude to the servicemen and women who step into harm's way to keep us safe; keeping them safe in return is an honor we take seriously." -Don Burnette, founder and CEO, Kodiak Robotics. Kodiak Robotics was the only autonomous vehicle company initially selected for this award out of 33 submissions, thanks to its proven leadership in autonomous systems development and commercialization, as well as its intense focus on safety. In the first year of this effort, Kodiak will build upon its core competency by applying its robust autonomous software stack for Army specific use cases, including future Army vehicles. In year two, the company will implement its autonomous driving system on off-road vehicles capable of traversing complex terrain and operating remotely in unpredictable and austere conditions. DIU focuses exclusively on adopting and scaling technologies developed by commercial partners to help strengthen U.S. national security by solving critical field challenges faced by the U.S. military. DIU works to identify innovations in six key technology areas where the commercial sector is operating at the leading edge: artificial intelligence, autonomy, cyber, energy, human systems, and space. While Kodiak Robotics will continue to focus on its core business of building autonomous trucks for use in commercial applications, this project serves as an important extension that helps to propel its innovations forward. This project shows that Kodiak's core technology has multiple use cases, laying the groundwork for future expansion beyond long-haul trucking. About Kodiak Robotics, Inc: Kodiak Robotics, Inc. was founded in 2018 to develop autonomous technology that carries freight forward — so people, partners, and the planet thrive. The company is developing an industry-leading technology stack purpose-built specifically for long-haul trucks, making the freight industry safer and more efficient. Kodiak's unique modular hardware approach integrates sensors into a streamlined sensor-pod structure that optimizes for perception, scalability, and maintainability. The company delivers freight daily for its customers across the South, operating autonomously on the highway portions of the routes.

Read More