Cisco to invest US$1 billion in KPMG
Networking vendor Cisco Systems Inc. announced earlier this month that it will invest more than US$1 billion in U.S. accounting and consulting firm KPMG LLP, to form a venture that advises companies on how they can take advantage of the Internet. In a deal which the companies expect to complete in September, Cisco and KPMG LLP have agreed to form KPMG Consulting. Cisco is taking a share of slightly less than 20 per cent in the new venture, with KPMG LLP taking the remainder, confirmed George Ledwith, a spokesperson for KPMG. Although U.S.-based, the company will serve customers worldwide. The companies have signed a letter of intent, and KPMG’s board of directors has approved the move, according to a joint statement. The agreement calls for KPMG to create six technology centres, where some 4,000 Internet consultants will develop Internet-based data, voice and video services for Cisco customers. For its part, Cisco will provide the hardware to develop these products and services, and will use its sales force of 6,000 people to market them. KPMG in the United States already has a long-standing alliance with Cisco. One part of that alliance is the Cisco Resource Network, which offers mid-sized businesses access to Internet-based applications. For more information, see www.kpmgconsulting.com.