A few thoughts about Akka’s 2018 results
During its presentation of its 2018 results, Akka provided some light on key its priorities. Here is a summary of these priorities.
About PDS Tech and North America
Akka does not intend to transform PDS Tech away from staffing to its core ER&D business but wants to use PDS Tech as a go-to-market for cross-selling. Akka is seeing cross-selling opportunities across its own client base (mostly aerospace with Bombardier and Airbus) for staffing services and across the client base of PDS Tech, mostly Boeing in Seattle, WA and in Charleston, SC), and also German OEMs with factories in South Carolina.
With EUR 279m in net debt (representing a 2.2 leverage), Akka believes it still has room for acquisitions. The company is looking in priority at the US and Germany, and overall, in all countries where it has a presence.
In the past, the strategy of Akka has been to gain scale through inexpensive but large acquisitions (with MBTech having cost approximately USD 100m), and complementing them by tuck-in and specialized firms.
About its organizational transformation
Akka has moved from a local delivery-only model to a CoE-based model, where its CoEs provide specialized services to the local delivery capabilities. Akka has 21 of these CoEs, and we assume its largest ones are the aerospace one in Toulouse (2.5k employees) and the automotive one in Stuggart (where Daimler has its headquarters). As far as we can tell, Akka has one CoE by capability (e.g., systems engineering, mechanical engineering, process engineering, support engineering, digital, embedded systems and electronics, information systems, design, and consulting) and by vertical (e.g., automotive, aeronautics, suppliers, life science, energy, services, railway, defense).