An Indian Civilizational Perspective

IBM to provide R&D expertise as a Service to its Clients

Another news item about IBM.. and how it is going to use its vast expertise in R&D to help other companies in making their R&D processes better.

IBM is selling its experience running research programs to other companies as it expands its consulting business, it said on Wednesday.

International Business Machines Corp. said the new business will help companies manage their research and development departments more efficiently and more profitably.

IBM estimates the research and development consulting market is worth about $8 billion and growing 13 percent annually. The business will help companies run their research units but won’t provide the research itself, IBM said.

For potential customers, "it’s about taking new ideas and turning them into commercial opportunities," said Mel Weems, head of the new consulting unit, in an interview. Research and development "is seen as one of the last real ways that companies can drive organic growth."

Weems said IBM consultants from various parts of the company will assess clients’ research and development business models and suggest ways to make them more profitable. IBM said it would soon launch the program in the Americas and Asia-Pacific region, expanding to Europe later in the year.

The new unit is part of an effort by IBM, of Armonk, New York, to sell consulting services that carry higher prices and are more profitable than more routine technical services that care also offered by competitors. IBM, in part, has done this by taking what it does internally and selling it to other companies, such as supply chain management, which IBM started selling as a service last year.

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