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cognizant: Cognizant to buy advisory firm Thirdera to focus on workflow solutions


Software services provider Cognizant has agreed to acquire two-year-old Thirdera, a global pure-play advisory firm, as part of its focus on emerging enterprise workflow products.

US-headquartered Cognizant plans to absorb 940 people from Thirdera into its ServiceNow business group, its channel partner which has a team of 1,500 people. The ServiceNow business group will be run by Jason Wojahn, CEO and cofounder of Thirdera, Cognizant said in a statement.

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Wojahn previously served as president of the ServiceNow business unit at Cloud Sherpas which was acquired by Accenture in 2015.

Cognizant and ServiceNow are currently building a $1 billion combined business focused on AI-driven automation. The addition of Thirdera, which brings an on-and-near-shore global presence for the Cognizant ServiceNow Business Group, will build on that business.

The acquisition is expected to close in January 2024. Financial details of the deal were not disclosed.

According to data firm Tracxn, Cognizant has spent over $3.04 billion towards acquisitions with the most recent being an IoT software engineering services firm Mobica, bought out in January this year, just weeks after Ravi Kumar S was appointed as Cognizant CEO.

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In February 2021, Cognizant had acquired Linium, a cloud transformation consultancy group specializing in the ServiceNow platform.”ServiceNow is leading a market shift toward customer, employee, and creator products. I believe the combination of Cognizant’s deep industry, AI, and platform expertise paired with Thirdera’s leading-edge offerings in enterprise transformation will position Cognizant at the forefront of thought leadership and innovation in the ServiceNow ecosystem,” said Ravi Kumar S.

“We estimate the deal could contribute at least 50 bps of annualized inorganic growth upon closure. This supports CTSH’s ambition to scale its dedicated ServiceNow practice to $1 billion+ as it leans into an attractive enterprise SaaS ecosystem and higher-value services,” said Bryan Bergin, managing director at US-based TD Cowen’s equity research group.

Based in Colorado in the US, Thirdera was formed in 2021 as part of a 3-company roll up (all ServiceNow channel partners) by its private equity sponsor, Sunstone Partners. It specializes in advisory, implementation and optimisation solutions.

As part of the acquisition, Thirdera’s ServiceNow training platform, Thirdera University – one of the world’s largest – is expected to play a central role in credentialing resources to fulfill growing demand in the ServiceNow ecosystem, the statement further said, adding that the acquisition will create a combined Cognizant ServiceNow Business Group with more than 2,400 specialists and 14,000 certifications – together creating one of the largest accredited ServiceNow partners globally.

“This is a pivotal moment for redefining customer engagement and operational efficiency… We aim to transform the fabric of our clients’ work environments, creating substantial value and offering our employees significant opportunities for professional growth and learning,” said Jason Wojahn, CEO and Co-Founder of Thirdera.

Thirdera, which claims to be the largest independent global pure-play ServiceNow consultancy, has its ServiceNow consultants based in North America, Spain, Colombia, the Netherlands, and Australia, among other locations.

In India, Cognizant is also reevaluating its entire real estate portfolio and has given up rented properties in some geographies.

This week ET reported that Cognizant intends to sell its office assets in Hyderabad and Chennai as part of its strategy to become asset-light and capitalise on non-core real estate. It also has plans to make further divestments in the space.

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