Acquisitions will bear
fruit, says HP

13 Jul 2005

Hewlett-Packard (HP) said today it anticipates substantial growth in the Irish business continuity marketplace and aims to leverage solid returns on the back of its acquisitions of its recent acquisitions of Synstar and the Irish division of Schlumberger Business Continuity Systems (BCS).

In October of last year, HP acquired approximately 92pc of the issued share capital of Synstar for €236m with the remainder acquired in November. Some 70pc of Synstar’s revenues are made in Ireland and the UK, where it operates a business-continuity facility in Swords.

This was followed up in March with the acquisition of the Irish division of Schlumberger BCS for an undisclosed sum.

It is understood the acquisitions have enabled HP to offer the Irish SME and corporate customer services that will keep the businesses running in the event of a disaster.

Today, the company integrated both acquisitions into its Irish BCS division, which has seven sites around the country, with five in Dublin and one each in Belfast and Cork. These offer a combination of data centres and duplicate dealing rooms that businesses can use to duplicate their IT requirements in the case of a disruption to their usual IT infrastructure.

In some cases, firms can react to a catastrophic failure in IT simply by switching over to a fully duplicated and replicated resource housed in a data centre provided by HP BCS. In the case of damage or impairment to a business premises, clients can choose to move their employees to an alternative site provided by HP BCS that will contain hot desks, an identical IT infrastructure and, where appropriate, access to dealing rooms and news information feeds.

Mary McGee, HP business continuity services manager, explained that factors driving growth in the BCS market are the growth of electronic commerce with its dependence on continuous IT availability, the requirement for audits of a company’s ability to cope with disruption, and compliance legislation regarding transparency and access to historical business data.

“We have continued to grow in our traditional target market for BCS with two major deals signed while we were in the process of integrating our acquisitions into a single business unit,” McGee explained. “But we also see opportunities for growth among smaller companies for whom round-the-clock IT uptime is becoming a mission-critical issue. With the experience and breadth of services we now have, we see HP BCS as being in an ideal position to take advantage of this growth.”

By John Kennedy