UK sets the pace as outsourcing deals soar

The value and number of IT outsourcing contracts in Europe, the Middle East and Africa shot up during the second quarter of 2007

The total value of outsourcing deals in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) shot up during the second quarter of 2007, with the UK leading the way.

According to Forrester Research, the total value of outsourcing deals increased by €1bn (£700m), while UK-based companies closed 36 percent of all deals signed in EMEA, worth nearly €2bn.

The research looked specifically at IT outsourcing deals worth more than €10m, with leading outsourcers claiming to have closed 84 deals in the period — 19 more than in the same quarter in 2006.

There was also growth in the actual number of deals, with a seven percentage point increase compared to the second quarter of last year.

IT infrastructure deals, such as IBM's 10-year deal with Royal & Sun Alliance — worth €371m — made up 45 percent of all outsourcing contracts.

"Service bundles" also increased, with 63 percent of all deals including more than one service; as opposed to 52 percent in the same period 12 months earlier.

Helpdesk and support services grew 44 percent, while desktop services deals grew by 31 percent. The business sectors that saw the strongest outsourcing growth were financial services and insurance, the analyst house said.

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