The digital business week

26 Mar 2012

A digest of the top business and technology news stories from the past week.

The internet economy is a US$4.2trn opportunity

The internet economy will reach US$4.2trn in G-20 economies by 2016 as the world’s internet population will reach 3bn, a new study by Boston Consulting Group claims.

According to Boston Consulting Group, if the internet were a national economy, it would rank in the world’s top 5, behind only the US, China, Japan, and India, and ahead of Germany.

Across the G-20, it already amounted to 4.1pc of GDP, or US$2.3trn, in 2010 – surpassing the economies of Italy and Brazil.

According to the report, the UK’s internet economy will represent 12.4pc of GDP by 2016. In 2010, the internet economy represented 8.3pc of the UK’s GDP – making it the G20’s most web-dependent country.

According to Boston Consulting Group, the internet is contributing up to 8pc of GDP in some economies, powering growth, and creating jobs.

Game Group to enter administration

Video-games retailer Game Group will enter administration, saying its discussions with stakeholders and other parties “have not made sufficient progress” to make the business viable in the short amount of time needed to do so.

In a statement, Game Group said it had been in talks with stakeholders to try and offer “a realistic prospect for a solvent solution for the business.” However, it said it has not made enough progress to do so in time.

As a result, its board has filed a notice of intention to appoint an administrator for the business. Game Group’s GAME and Gamestation stores will continue to trade in the short term and it will continue discussions with lenders ‘under the protection of the interim moratorium.’

HP restructure will see printer group subsumed into PC group

Technology giant HP is undergoing a reorganisation that will see its Imaging and Printing Group merge into its Personal Systems Group, it has been reported.

According to All Things Digital, the combined business group will report to executive vice-president Todd Bradley. The VP in charge of the printing group VJ Joshi will leave the company, it has been reported.

The reorganisation is part of a drive by CEO Meg Whitman to simplify structures at HP aimed at being more responsive to changing customer needs.

Netwatch makes US headway in car dealership space

Carlow-headquartered protection services company Netwatch is fast making inroads in the US since the opening of its Boston HQ. Falmouth Toyota in Cape Cod has just come on board as its latest customer, as the company aims to take a chunk of auto dealerships space in Massachusetts.

The company is on a mission to help such customers up their security systems and combat car thefts. Netwatch has already taken on Bernardi Honda of Brockton and Natick and Copeland Toyota of Brockton. CEO David Walsh said the combined automotive contracts are valued at US$500,000 over three years.

Set up by Walsh and Niall Kelly in 2003, Netwatch was one of the first companies in Ireland to combine specialist video transmission technologies with satellite communications to provide protection solutions for clients. It provides real-time remote security monitoring to businesses and private residences in Ireland and internationally.

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