Ricoh’s Acquisition Of DataVision Bolsters Its Competitive Positioning In The Growing Workplace Systems Integration Market
On September 1, 2020, Ricoh announced it had acquired workplace systems integrator DataVision, headquartered in Germany. The deal provides Ricoh with 100 new staff based in Germany and 1,300 new customers. DataVision was founded in 1995 and it has built out expertise in implementing workplace technologies, including audio visual (AV) systems, digital signage, and software for meeting room management. Ricoh plans to leverage the acquisition to support its growth across Germany and mainland Europe.
Ricoh – best known for its printing and photocopier services – has been steadily building out its digital workplace services capabilities. For many years it has been a key implementor of Condeco’s meeting room management software, as well as iOFFICE's integrated workplace management system (IWMS). It has also built out capabilities to help firms improve their utilization of workplaces with space occupancy sensors and digital panels for meeting room booking. Ricoh believes the acquisition of DataVision will make it amongst the largest workplace systems integrators in Europe.
In recent years, demand for workplace systems integration has been growing rapidly. As firms transition to agile workplaces where staff do not have fixed desks, legacy space booking systems are often not able to handle the new complexities of desk sharing. Firms need to deploy new software solutions that can show real-time desk availability (often drawing on sensor data) and provide staff with convenient tools, such as mobile apps and workplace kiosks, to book spaces on the go.
But this attractive market has been getting increasingly competitive. Real estate consultants, global IT services firms, master systems integrators and ‘Big Four’ accounting firms are frequently coming head-to-head for the large workplace systems integration deals. More recently, facility services firms have been staking out offerings, such as Sodexo’s ‘Wx’ division, which offers consulting and technology services to support the transition to smart and flexible workplaces. Success will depend on firms building on their existing customer relationships to win these projects and competing at the right price point. All that said, Ricoh, with its large customer base and relationships in place with office managers, has a strong starting point.
To learn more about the changing opportunities for systems integrators in the smart workplace, tune into our upcoming webinar Smart Building Systems Integration: Key Trends And New Opportunities, taking place on Thursday 17 September.