Steria

THE SCOOP

A brave new world

Created in 1969 by Jean Carterton, the Société d'Etude et de Réalisation en Informatique et Autonomisme (or Steria, as it is thankfully known today), started life as a software development and programming outfit providing advice to French companies embracing the scary and futuristic new wave of computer technology in the 1970s.  Fast forward to over 40 years later and the firm is still helping out French companies; the only difference is that it is now one of Europe's largest providers of IT business services focussing on consultingâ€"or "transformation services" as the company calls itâ€"operational services, and industrial deliveryâ€"or outsourcing to you and me.  The "transformational services" include process and IT transformation, application development, business intelligence, Oracle and SAP services.  

Although the consultancy is French in origin and derives most of its revenue from its business dealings in Europe, it has made a happy home across the Channel; the United Kingdom is now the IT specialist's most important market, pulling in 43 per cent of annual revenue.  Steria provides end-to-end services to clients like El Corte Ingles, Tesco, BT, Boots, Royal Mail and the French Ministry of the Economy, Finance and Industry, developing and then operating their information systems from beginning to end.  The firm offers its services to a broad clientele involved in financial services, manufacturing, retail, transport, telecommunications and the media, health care, the public sector and utilities, through its 19,000 staff in 16 countries across Europe, North Africa, India and Asia Pacific.

From national treasure to European powerhouse

Throughout the 1970s, Steria was the darling of the French technology sector with an ambitious desire for expansion.  Opening branches all over the country, reporting steady growth and buying out as many companies as it could manage, the firm was reporting a growth rate of 80 per cent year on year by 1976, and was already employing 550 people across France.  By 1990, it had moved into the German, Swiss, Spanish and Belgian markets, and could boast work on some of the most prestigious international projectsâ€"including the computer automation project of Central Bank of Saudi Arabia in 1986 and the creation of a driverless train for Paris' RER A line two years later.  

Despite that proud history, it wasn't until 1998 that the consultancy suddenly unlocked its real potential, when the then 38-year old François Enaud took over the reins as CEO.  Change wasn't long in following the youthful new leader, who oversaw the opening of subsidiaries in the UK and Singapore, as well as the firm's initial public offeringâ€"an event that provided enough cash for the firm to go on something of a spending spree.  While a number of purchases were made in 2000 alone, it was the acquisition of troubled French computer group Bull in 2001 that helped Steria become one of the top-10 IT service companies in Europeâ€"an elite position that it maintains to this day.

Crossing the Channel

Another major coup de force for Steria came when it struck a deal to purchase UK outsourcing firm Xansa for £456 million in 2007.  That move greatly expanded the firm's presence in the UKâ€"particularly in the public and financial sectorsâ€"and in global outsourcing markets.  Included in the deal were delivery centres in Noida, Chennai and Pune, along with Xansa's 5,000-strong Indian workforceâ€"assets that greatly improved Steria's outsourcing capabilities and that came preloaded with contracts to provide back-office functions for UK organisations of the stature of Threshers, the BBC and Lloyds TSB.


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Steria


46, rue Camille Desmoulins
Issy-Les-Moulineaux 92782
Phone: 33 1 34 88 60 00
Fax: 33 1 34 88 69 69
www.steria.com

STATS


  • Employer Type: Public
  • Stock Symbol: RIA
  • Stock Exchange: Euronext Paris
  • Chairman & CEO: François Enaud
  • 2009 Employees: 19,000

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