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The biggest enterprise technology M&A deals of 2020

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The enterprise software and services landscape has continued evolving, even as the pandemic has rumbled on, with startups in new product categories disrupting established vendors, and well-known names combining to stay on top of the market. Cloud services in particular is a market that has been changing rapidly of late, both in terms of the software that runs in the cloud and the hardware that powers it.

For CIOs, mergers and acquisitions (M&As) in the tech space can be disruptive to strategic rollouts, spell a need to pivot to a new solution, mean the potential sunsetting of essential technology, provide new opportunities to leverage newly synergized systems, and be a bellwether of further upcoming shifts in the technology landscape. Keeping on top of activity in this area can help your company make the most of emerging opportunities and steer clear of issues that often arise when vendors combine.

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The biggest enterprise technology M&A deals of 2021

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The first half of 2021 saw some of the largest merger and acquisition (M&A) deals of the past five years in the technology, media, and telecommunications sector, according to PwC, although nothing quite rivaled AMD’s $35 billion bid last year for Xilinx, or Salesforce.com’s now-closed $27.7 billion acquisition of Slack.

The number of deals this past quarter has continued apace, with smaller firms merging or being swallowed up to extend the functionality offered by the giants of enterprise software and services. Mega-mergers, however, have slowed of late, and one reason for this may be a fear of government intervention.

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Greenhouse gas emissions: The next big issue for CIOs

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CIOs have a significant role to play in helping enterprises report and reduce greenhouse gas emission — and it goes way beyond switching to energy-efficient cloud computing or turning off the office PCs at night.

That’s the message coming out of recent customer events put on by software and IT services vendors including SAP, Salesforce, and Google, which this week is making sustainability a big feature of its Next 21 cloud computing event.

Enterprises are increasingly expected — by their customers and, in some cases, by government — to report on their greenhouse gas emissions, typically by following standard measurement methodologies such as the Greenhouse Gas Protocol.

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UiPath partners with CrowdStrike to secure SaaS workflow automation

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UiPath is expanding its robotic process automation (RPA) platform with new features it hopes will put it on CIOs’ radar, including better security, a cloud-native delivery model, and the ability to automate through APIs as well as the UI.

The security component comes through a partnership with CrowdStrike, while the API automation is the fruit of UiPath’s acquisition of Cloud Elements in March 2021.

A recent survey by IDG Research found that many IT organizations are showing no interest in RPA, even as the appetite for business process management and workflow automation is growing. UiPath’s move up the stack toward more sophisticated API automation capabilities — and workflow automation platform ServiceNow’s partnering with process mining specialist Celonis — are a sign that automation vendors are seeking to address CIOs’ broader concerns.

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