Accenture enhances Industry X.0 capabilities; buys hardware engineering firm Mindtribe, announces intent to acquire embedded company Pillar

Accenture made this week two major moves to expand its Industry X.0 practice. The company acquired hardware engineering firm Mindtribe and entered into an agreement to buy smart embedded software company Pillar Technology. The two acquisitions will boost Accenture’s ability to help companies redefine smart connected software and physical products as the lines blur between the physical and digital world.

Accenture Industry X.0 helps industrial, high-tech, software, automotive, energy and utility companies address the shift to digital products and services, transform their engineering, manufacturing and field operations, and digitize their enterprises.

Founded in 1998, Mindtribe provides expertise and services in areas including mechanical and electrical engineering, embedded software development, product realization and rapid prototyping. Steve Myers and his leadership team will continue to lead Mindtribe’s business and take on additional responsibilities for Accenture Industry X.0 in North America.

The Mindtribe team will work hand in hand with Accenture’s Industry X.0 team and professionals from Accenture Interactive’s San Francisco Fjord studio, which received a talent boost with Fjord’s acquisition of design & innovation firm MATTER last year. Mindtribe and MATTER have previously collaborated on the invention of Well, a smart home water conservation system.

Pillar Technology, founded in 1996, offers rapid and agile development and testing of enterprise-grade applications, software products and platforms associated with physical products, and digital services engineering for hardware products. Upon closing, Bob Myers will continue to be responsible for the Pillar Technology business. In addition, he will lead Accenture Industry X.0’s smart products and embedded solutions practice. His team is expected to continue in their roles and support Pillar Technology’s integration into Accenture Industry X.0.

The Mindtribe acquisition has been completed. Completion of the acquisition of Pillar is subject to customary closing conditions. Financial terms for both transactions were not disclosed.

“Products are no longer simply physical things – they are evolving to be connected platforms that are powered by artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, and cloud and edge computing,” said Mike Sutcliff, group chief executive, Accenture Digital. “With our Industry X.0 capabilities, we are helping our clients create the products of the future with the required expertise in digital technologies, software development, product engineering, as well as user experience and product design. These acquisitions will fuel our drive to become a leader in developing connected products and services.”

“Our investment in innovation is an investment in our clients,” said Julie Sweet, Accenture’s chief executive officer, North America. “These acquisitions follow the opening of our new Industry X.0 innovation hub in metro Detroit, further expanding our capabilities to help companies across a range of industries rapidly co-create, prototype and launch connected products and services to unlock new revenue streams and business models.”

Mindtribe has a team of 40 professionals and is based in San Francisco. It creates innovative connected hardware tightly integrated with digital services. Having pioneered the use of agile techniques for hardware, the team can deliver user value faster and shorten development cycles. It has created class-leading technology products for many iconic brands and high-tech companies.

Headquartered in Columbus, Ohio, Pillar Technology has a team of 320 people and offices in Des Moines, Iowa, Ann Arbor, Michigan, and Palo Alto, California. It possesses more than 20 years of experience in the rapid/agile development of high-quality and user-friendly embedded software used in smart, connected products such as autonomous vehicles.

Pillar Technology fuses elegant physical products with digital services that increase the benefit for end users and offer new ways to attract and serve customers. It has worked on reinventing the concept of hardware products with many iconic brands and high-tech companies.

“Mindtribe has always sought to build groundbreaking connected products and services, and we are proud to be behind some of the world’s most high-profile product successes,” said Steve Myers, CEO of Mindtribe. “Now, 20 years after the foundation of Mindtribe, the most exciting part of our journey is still ahead of us, and we are looking forward to moving ahead as part of the Accenture Industry X.0 team.”

“Our ambition is to provide the best possible software — embedded or connected – at lightning speed,” said Bob Myers, CEO of Pillar Technology. “We focus on value and fast feedback loops that puts user experience at the forefront. Joining Accenture‘s Industry X.0 practice will allow us to bring this focus on speed-to-value to even more clients. We’re excited to be a part of how Industry X.0 will help clients reach new heights in the U.S. and globally.”

As an area that represents significant growth opportunities for clients, Accenture is focused on strengthening its capabilities in Industry X.0 globally. For example, Accenture recently launched a new Industry X.0 innovation hub in metro Detroit, acquired Boston-based product design and innovation firm Altitude, and completed its acquisition of strategic design consultancy designaffairs.

Mindtribe’s San Francisco office and team offer all interdisciplinary skills and physical hardware engineering equipment that clients need to build connected products from concept through production.

Pillar Technology will add a unique approach, called “The Forge,” that brings together business strategists, creatives, developers and clients to collaborate on solving business problems in a no-constraints, innovative environment.


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