Accenture acquires NA health practice

Accenture acquires NA health practice

ACCENTURE HAS AGREED to acquire IT services and business consultancy Capgemini’s North American health practice, expanding the range of capabilities Accenture offers to the full spectrum of public- and private-sector health and life sciences organizations. The acquisition will combine Accenture’s capabilities in health plans, life sciences companies and government organizations with Capgemini’s hospital services and health systems.

Accenture will pay the purchase price of $175 million in cash. Other terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

Following the acquisition, approximately 600 Capgemini professionals, including approximately 70 clinicians, will join Accenture’s Health & Life Sciences practice in North America, bringing the total number of Accenture professionals serving health and life sciences clients in the region to more than 4,600.

“This agreement underscores our commitment to helping our clients improve the quality, affordability and accessibility of health care,” said Thomas K. Spann, managing partner of Accenture’s Health & Life Sciences practice in North America. “Through this combination of industry leaders, Accenture will be even better positioned to serve the rapidly growing health market. We welcome Capgemini’s team of talented industry experts, as we clearly share a culture focused on delivering value for each client and making a positive difference for health care in North America.”

Accenture’s clients in the private and public health sectors include integrated health care providers, health insurers, managed care organizations, public health organizations and pharmaceutical, biotechnology and medical products companies. Accenture’s services to health and related entities in the public and private sectors accounted for more than $800 million of Accenture’s net revenues in fiscal 2004.

EU rules on electronic comms, launches infringement proceedings

THE EUROPEAN COMMISION has launched legal proceedings against 10 EU Member States to remedy infringements of EU rules on electronic communications. It points to defects in national laws, and incorrect practical application of EU rules, in Germany, Italy, Latvia, Malta, the Netherlands, Austria, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia and Finland.

The opening of these proceedings follows concerns identified in the Commission’s Implementation Reports on the electronic communications sector, the most recent of which was published at the end of 2004. In opening these proceedings, Information Society and Media Commissioner Viviane Reding reiterated the importance of implementing the EU rules fully and correctly.

Ineffective implementation of these rules threatens the goal, which is vital to EU productivity and growth, of building a competitive electronic communications sector within the EU. Following the first decisions of the Court of Justice against Member States that have not yet fully transposed the EU regulatory framework for electronic communications into their national laws, the Commission is now determined to highlight — and press Member States to remedy — defects in national law and practical implementation. Of prime concern is national regulatory authorities are given the full range of powers provided for under the EU rules, in order to ensure that competition is effective and that consumers are protected.

Scottish Enterprise’s massive telecom infrastructure project

SCOTTISH ENTERPRISE AWARDED Alfred McAlpine the contract to build its telecom infrastructure project, ATLAS. The economic development agency’s multimillion telecommunications initiative will provide high quality, cost effective advanced broadband and telecom services to more than 300 businesses initially in six business parks around the country. The landmark project was given approval by the European Commission in 2004.

“The decision by the European Union gave us the green light to work constructively with the telecom industry to provide Scottish businesses with a world class telecom infrastructure,” said Scottish Enterprise’s director of e-business, Frank O’Donnell.

Alfred McAlpine has wide experience designing and building telecom infrastructure with clients such as North Lanarkshire Council, BAA, Baillie Gifford and BNP Paribas. This infrastructure will be owned by Scottish Enterprise but will be open to all telecom companies to sell services over.

The new links into the parks will be capable of carrying much more information, more quickly than anything currently widely available. This will help establish Scotland as a location for industries requiring state-of-the-art telecommunications such as; the games sector, digital media, life sciences and software development.

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