10.04.2008 |

S&T: IMG takeover a success

Integration successfully concluded – new impetus for the DACH region

With the absorption of IMG, S&T, the Vienna Stock Exchange listed IT consulting company and service provider, has successfully concluded the largest acquisition and integration in the company’s history. After the closing of the takeover at the beginning of April 2007, IMG, founded in 1988 as a spin-off from the University of St. Gallen and with around 650 employees and 27 branch offices in Central and Eastern Europe, Asia and the United States, was transferred in its entirety to the S&T Group. Christian Rosner, CEO S&T: “The integration was a considerable organizational and financial challenge for us, but the units responsible have handled this task superbly. We have already harvested the first fruits of the takeover with the record results of 2007.”

IMG, which specializes in the preparation and implementation of international, cross-company business models in processes and systems, was and is the optimal complement for S&T, particularly in three strategic areas:

a) Strengthening and expanding of the geographical footprint

IMG, with its branch offices in Russia, Poland and Romania, offered a strengthening of the already successful S&T presence. S&T was able to expand its activities in two of the most attractive markets in Asia - Japan and especially China. And in the DACH region S&T, together with IMG, achieved a highly successful re-entry into the Swiss market and a significant strengthening of the small S&T branch in Germany. In Austria, IMG’s addition of the important segments of management and technology consulting, as well as ERP services, optimally expands the portfolio of services offered by S&T Austria.

b) Complementing the S&T service portfolio

With the integration of IMG, S&T realigned its core business area of Business Solutions and thus promoted the IT and ERP/SAP consulting business even more strongly. With a joint total of around 1,200 SAP consultants, of which 400 are in the DACH region, S&T is one of the leading SAP consulting companies in Europe. Experienced, multinational teams, with comprehensive industry and technology expertise, quickly convinced customers after the takeover of the skills and capabilities of the expanded company: sales in IT consulting and solutions increased by 59% in the 2007 financial year. “We are aiming to double our business in IT consulting, solutions and services by 2010. IMG provides excellent support in the realization of this goal. In 2007 this business area accounted for already 45% of overall sales”, explains Rosner.

c) Customer demographics and target industries link to each other perfectly

With IMG, S&T now services more than 3,000 customers internationally. The optimal market positioning of IMG, as well as its excellent reputation, strengthen the already high competitiveness of S&T. Many customers (e.g. Andritz AG, OMV, Bilfinger and Berger) that had received service from both companies before the takeover now enjoy the benefits of "one" contact person for all challenges along the IT value creation chain, as well as profiting from the additional services and the synergistic advantages provided by the merger. In its target industries, IMG strengthens above all the S&T focus on the manufacturing industry and financial services, and also brings with it new areas of focus, such as the important retailing industry.

New positioning of the DACH region

Most significant is the integration of IMG in the DACH region. All IMG and S&T branches in Germany, Austria and Switzerland were consolidated at the beginning of 2008 into one organization. Around 800 employees, of whom 500 are experienced consultants and 300 infrastructure experts, service large and medium enterprises in these three countries. From management consulting and the optimization of industry-specific business processes, with a focus on SAP, to the operation and optimization of infrastructure,

S&T DACH offers its customers the whole spectrum of IT services. “We combine the strengths of both companies and see ourselves as the one-stop IT shop for upper mid-size customers in the areas of manufacturing, trade, car trade, banking and insurance. The IMG takeover has given the DACH region a new impetus, which we now want to actively utilize", explains Georg Komornyik, Regional General Manager of S&T DACH. To this end, S&T continues to make selective use of the good image value of the IMG brand – as a sub-brand for the area of Business Solutions - "IMG - consulting services of S&T", thus combining the high profile and strengths of both brands.

S&T boosts the strategic value of IT

S&T’s Business Solutions, in which IMG experts are also integrated, is clearly geared towards establishing the customers’ IT as an important part of the value creation chain in the company. IT must implement business strategy and support it as well as promoting the core commercial activities of the customer. Moreover, IT today makes a strategic contribution to growth and competitive strengthening in practically every company.

“We know from our own experience how important it is that IT reacts quickly and efficiently in order to plan processes and implement them, to fulfill the requirements of the core business”, says Rosner. “S&T is a partner who is not only a specialist in strategic IT-Management but as well in the realization of the strategy. Combined with our industry and technological expertise we are able to master the IT challenges facing our customers in a goal-oriented way and thereby support them in clearly realizing the valuable contribution that IT can make.”