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IBM expands in the digital agency space

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IBM has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Aperto, a digital agency with headquarters in Berlin.
Upon completion of this transaction, Aperto will to join the IBM Interactive Experience (IBM iX) team, supporting IBM’s growth in the largest economy in Europe.
Aperto’s 300-plus employees will continue to serve its roster of clients, which currently includes companies such as Airbus Group, Volkswagen and Siemens.
IBM iX is the largest global digital agency, according to the Ad Age Agency Report – 2014 & 2015, providing clients a unique fusion of services spanning strategy, analytics and systems integration for scalable digital, commerce, mobile and wearable platforms – including consumer apps for the Apple Watch. Its consultants co-create solutions clients including Nationwide, Jaguar’s Landrover, Citi and Wimbledon in 25 global IBM Studios.
“IBM iX is a global market leader in experience design, which is emerging as an essential element in all business strategy,” says Paul Papas, global leader for IBM Interactive Experience. “We’re honored to be joining forces with Aperto and look forward to reshaping the future of business and digital innovation with our clients in Germany and beyond.”
“We pride ourselves on remaining at the forefront of the digital revolution. After 20 years in the industry, we’re proud to join forces with IBM iX, the largest global digital agency, to continue doing just that,” says Dirk Buddensiek, CEO of Aperto. “Between the talent sitting within the iX team, and IBM’s transformative work in the cognitive space, as well as leadership in cloud, mobile and analytics, this opportunity will open many doors for both our team and clients.”
IBM has identified a critical and growing need for digital, strategy and design skills at the leading edge of business strategy. Demand for experience design is expected to accelerate as clients in all industries seek to deliver more consumer-like experiences to their customers and employees, and integrate the power of cognitive computing and analytics platforms.
This is IBM’s second creative and digital agency acquisition in a matter of days. It follows Thursday’s announcement of IBM’s intent to acquire US-based agency Resource/Ammirati, and demonstrates continued investment in Germany. In December 2015 IBM launched its global headquarters for the Watson Internet of Things (IoT) unit in Munich.
The transaction is expected to close in the first quarter of 2016 and is subject to applicable regulatory review and customary closing conditions. Financial details were not disclosed.