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Fujitsu strategy may rewrite evolutional theory of global IT services market

Peter Clarke | April 13, 2009
Fujitsus thinking is based on the theory that each global geographic IT market will not evolve to the same point, let alone at the same pace.

Ovum has been told by Philip Oliver, Fujitsus Global Marketing Manager, that Fujitsus restructuring is about building the Fujitsu name as a global brand and backing the global image with a truly global organisation. Regional trading entities will be expected to work in each others geographies if required, to build critical mass in markets.

Product is added to service in Europe to enrich offer

Ovum logoPhilip Oliver has told Ovum that product is being added to service to enrich Fujitsus offer in Europe. Fujitsus go-to-market strategy will not simply be product led. Product-led sales will become an additional route to market, with or without services. Fujitsu will also go to market in Europe with services and consulting. Fujitsu believes that some customers will want to buy product, others will want product wrapped around with service, yet others will want service wrapped around another manufacturers product, whilst some will want consulting and services. Fujitsu sees itself serving all these customers but now with a wider range of offerings. Product will include server, PC and laptop hardware and the offerings of Fujitsu Telecommunications.

Oliver explained that Fujitsu has taken the opportunity of the restructuring provoked by the absorption of the Fujitsu-Siemens Computers business to develop Fujitsu as a global brand. Services will continue to dominate Fujitsus offer in the UK and Ireland.

This message is more pleasing to the UK audience than that delivered on 30 March from Tokyo. Soothing as Olivers interpretation is, however, it surely cannot just mean business as usual otherwise how will Fujitsu UK and Ireland contribute to the development of the global brand?

A different take on the evolution of the global services market

Fujitsus thinking is based on the theory that each global geographic IT market will not evolve to the same point, let alone at the same pace. This thinking runs contrary to the popular theory of geographic evolution of the IT services market, which sees IT services and managed services businesses starting in the US and then moving to the UK and the rest of the Europe before gradually spreading east to become a global phenomenon. According to this theory, IT markets evolve through a series of stages: firstly customers acquire hardware and software products, then add services to assist their in-house operations, before finally moving to outsourcing and managed services. This theory envisages that markets will evolve at different paces but predicts that it is only a matter of time before a fully fledged IT services market opens in all global geographies.

Fujitsu does not believe this will happen. It is easy to understand the thinking: in Japan, for example, managed services are fully integrated with a total solutions focus a single vendor typically provides all elements of a solution, including software and services. In contrast, product leads in China and Eastern European markets. Fujitsu believes that the best way to build market share in these emerging markets is to deliver what the market demands rather than offering what it thinks the market requires. Services will dominate in a very mature market such as the US or UK. The strategy and targets for each of Fujitsus regions will reflect the nature of the market they serve.


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