Mergers and Acquisitions, Enterprise, Mergers and Acquisitions, SI, Content

IBM Acquires Adobe Workfront Consultancy Amid Kyndryl Spin-Out

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IBM continues to acquire technology consulting businesses even as it prepares to spin out the Kyndryl managed infrastructure services business before 2022.

The latest deal involves IBM acquiring the Adobe Workfront consulting unit and assets from Rego Consulting Corporation. Headcount figures and financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

This is technology M&A deal number 653 that ChannelE2E has covered so far in 2021.

Reinventing IBM?

This deal is the latest piece in Krishna’s effort to pivot IBM toward multi-cloud software and related consulting services that drive business automation.

The latest consulting acquisition focuses on Adobe Cloud, Creative Cloud and Document Cloud projects. The deal represents the 17th overall acquisition for IBM (and the ninth acquisition in cloud and AI services) since Krishna took over as IBM CEO in April 2020, the company said.

The acquired Adobe-focused consulting team will tuck into the Adobe practice within IBM iX -- which is the customer and experience transformation group of IBM Consulting. IBM iX offers integrated consulting services for marketing, sales and service capabilities.

IBM Acquires Adobe Consulting Expertise: Executive Perspectives

In a prepared statement about the deal, Mark Foster, senior VP of IBM Consulting, said:

"Reinvention with cloud and AI is happening at an unprecedented scale and pace, and enterprise marketing is no exception. The ongoing investments IBM is making in consulting services with acquisitions like this one cement IBM as the partner of choice that clients turn to for their digital business transformation."

Added Tony Sanders, senior director, Americas Partner Sales at Adobe:

"IBM and Adobe have had a strategic partnership for over 20 years, and enterprise marketers are embracing digital transformation with us. With today's announcement, IBM gains even deeper marketing domain expertise and consulting capabilities in the fast-growing work management space."

Concluded Dan Greer, president of Rego Consulting:

"Work management is an important and often overlooked part of the vision to deliver impactful customer experiences. Our Adobe Workfront management solutions will find a natural home within IBM iX as it enables the world's largest companies to navigate their digital work transformations."

IBM Spinning Off Kyndryl: MSP Business Details

Meanwhile, IBM is on track to spin out Kyndryl as an independent managed infrastructure services provider (MSP) business before 2022. IBM and Kyndryl will certainly partner, but the companies may also compete on some fronts, ChannelE2E believes.

Arvind Krishna, CEO, IBM

Indeed, some of IBM’s recent acquisitions under CEO Arvind Krishna involve cloud migration services and some form of managed services. Those recently acquired services will remain with the IBM business portfolio, while Kyndryl also focuses on six global managed services practices. Those Kyndryl practices include:

  1. Cloud
  2. Applications, Data & AI
  3. Security & Resiliency
  4. Core Enterprise & zCloud
  5. Network & Edge
  6. Digital Workplace

In some ways, IBM Consulting also focuses on several of those services.

Joe Panettieri

Joe Panettieri is co-founder & editorial director of MSSP Alert and ChannelE2E, the two leading news & analysis sites for managed service providers in the cybersecurity market.