Welcome to the final news round-up for the month of February, 2011. There shall never be another.
Shall there ever be another LECG? The firm reserves special mention on today's round-up, as it announced the sale of five key practice groups to rival consultancies. Spring is all about rebirth, a notion that LECG will have to embrace big time if it's to stay afloat. Before that can happen though, further divestment could yet be in the cards.
Are you poor, bored, and desperately yearning to own an iPad? Good news! The Boston Consulting Group, global experts on seemingly everything, published a consumer report this weekend on the future of tablet computers and other high-tech gadgetry that predicts falling prices for the devices over the next few years. The study, which examined pricing points of Apple's iPad, Motorola's Xoom, and e-readers like Amazon's Kindle and Barnes & Noble's Nook, warns manufacturers that prices will have to plummet in order for iPad-like devices to go mass-market. The consultancy surveyed roughly 14,000 consumers in 16 countries, who indicated that while not increasingly likely to spend on one of the aforementioned gadgets, they were far more familiar with their brand than in 2010. The survey's key finding, though, was about pricing. The Financial Times reports that Apple currently sells the iPad for anywhere between $500 and almost $1,000; its younger competitor, the Motorola Xoom, can be pre-ordered for a cool $800—both represent major expenditures more befitting of a desktop computer than a book-sized tablet. The "sweet spot", BCG's term for the ideal intersection of price and consumer demand, will actually be under $200, the firm says. Obviously, there's a huge discrepancy between the "sweet spot" and the not-so-sweet cost in 2011; BCG consultants see this as both a big opportunity for smaller players to break into a more frugal consumer demographic and a major challenge to top manufacturers like Apple. "It sets up a huge battle for value creation over the next 12 months between different tablet manufacturers, component manufacturers and the content industry," said John Rose, top BCG media exec.
BearingPoint announced today that it had struck up a "strategic consulting alliance" with Asian outfit ABeam Consulting, forming a union that spans two continents. After BearingPoint sold its North American and public sector practices to PwC and Deloitte respectively, it has sought to rebuild its global presence (it only operates in Europe now) through similar alliances. Both firms will recommend clients to the other's services and even "rely on each other's infrastructure and resources" (i.e. BearingPoint can use ABeam's Asia offices and vice versa). "Asia is a strategically important market for us," said BearingPoint's Peter Mockler, stating the obvious. "This agreement is another milestone for us. Since our management buyout in 2009, expanding our global reach to serve clients around the world has been one of the key elements of our firm's strategy."
For more information:
ABeam Consulting and BearingPoint Announce Strategic Consulting Alliance
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