Welcome to the penultimate news round-up of this, the third week in March. This morning, amidst freezing rain in New York City, I spotted some daffodils standing tall against the onslaught. I saw this as an omen of positive things to come here at Consult THIS. With any luck, tonight's round-up will be a testament to that prophecy.
Capgemini made news this week on several fronts: women and airports. Christine Hodgson, Chairman of Capgemini UK, was named Everywoman's Woman of the Year for 2011 at a tech conference that recognizes female contributions to industry. The conference/awards gala is hosted by Everywoman, a networking utility for women in business, and a pair of similar (also British) organizations, Connecting Women in Technology and womenintechnology.co.uk. Hodgson won top prize in the event and another Capgemini lady, Billie Major, took home the Team Leader of the Year prize. Major runs a small Capgemini IT unit in England. Firm CEO Paul Hermelin congratulated his charges: "We are proud of our record in promoting equality of opportunity at every level and we hope that these two outstanding women will inspire others to join our industry and appreciate its many exciting career opportunities," he said. Now, let's talk airports. BAA, the "airport company" behind London Heathrow and at least five other airports in the UK, has decided to outsource its IT operations to Capgemini. BAA took a lot of heat in 2010, when a bit of snow caused Heathrow to serve as a makeshift refugee camp for stranded travelers. The company will be hoping Capgemini can improve the facility's organization and efficiency initiatives. The contract lasts for five years and is worth approximately €100 million.
Canadian consultancy CGI's stock valuation impressed Forbes enough to command a spot on the publication's trading blog yesterday. Analysts recommended that traders buy CGI shares as the price of its stock hit an all-time high. The firm offered an explanation for the run in the form of a 22.7 percent revenue increase from Q1 of last year, an increase that Forbes attributes to "increased client project activity." Fair enough. Now bringing in more than $1 billion per quarter, CGI is predicting an extremely profitable FY 2011, and Wall Street is clearly jumping on the horse.
News from desolate Wisconsin: Huron Consulting Group has earned a contract with the University of Wisconsin-Madison to evaluate how the school could be saving more time, energy, and crucially, money. UW-Madison is staring down the barrel of a $125 million cut in state funding, so the engagement is pretty much a necessity; while efficiency and organization will be on the Huron consultants' minds, it's really all about cutting costs. The university released some interesting numbers on what it's paying the Huron consultants, by the hour: analysts command $175 per hour, associates $225, and project managers $227. $175 an hour for an analyst? Woof. The school also notes that Huron is being investigated by the SEC for "misrepresenting its finances"—an interesting development indeed, though one that UW-Madison claims won't affect this engagement.
For more information:
Capgemini UK Chairman Christine Hodgson is Woman of the Year
Heathrow's Owner BAA Outsources IT to Capgemini
Wisconsin State Journal
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