Global Activities of NTT Group


Imran Sayeed, Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer (CTO)
Vivek Mehra, Senior Vice President, Architecture & Innovation


On January 1, 2012, NTT DATA, Inc. integrated several companies under its brand name, including Keane, Intelli-group, MISI Company, The Revere Group, and Vertex. This move is aimed at enhancing the global brand the company has established in the markets of the United States, Europe, and India. This article presents the business fields in which the company is involved and shows case studies for them.


1. Introduction

NTT DATA, Inc.’s present structure was formed by integrating multiple firms under its brand name. The first was Keane, which had been a wholly owned subsidiary of NTT DATA [1]. Then we integrated Intelligroup, MISI Company, The Revere Group, and Vertex. The largest of these firms was Keane, which had a business history of over 40 years. The amalgamation and reorganization of these firms was completed on January 1, 2012, but the official founding date of the restructured organization was April 1, the first day of the fiscal year in Japan.

These firms had all been focusing on different business fields. Specifically, Keane had specialized in application development and outsourcing, Intelli-group in supporting solutions from SAP AG and Oracle Corporation, MISI in staffing, The Revere Group in providing services to small-to-midsize firms, and Vertex in providing services mainly to Japan. Since none had been competing against each other, they are still able to use their respective strengths effectively. The complementary skills and locations of these companies give NTT DATA, Inc. a complete end-to-end consulting services catalog, with onsite/onshore, near-shore (Canada), and offshore global delivery capabilities (multiple delivery locations in India).

Geographically speaking, these firms have different strongholds. Within the United States, Keane’s strongholds are the East and West Coasts and MISI’s the Midwest. Vertex’s home turf is Pune, India, and Keane also operates in India—in Delhi, Bangalore, Pune, and Chennai.

2. Business content

Our main lines of business include application development, business process outsourcing (BPO), testing, SAP* and Oracle packages, cloud services, and mobile computing services. Sales volume is highest for application development and BPO and SAP related areas. Sectors we specialize in include financial services, insurance, health care, civil service, and the commerce and manufacturing sectors. We present some case studies for these below.

2.1 Business process outsourcing (BPO)

Business process outsourcing is one of our strong points. Compared to other companies, in our outsourcing we have the advantages of being industry focused and multi-shore, and so are able to support a very large customer base. We focus on various industries and rely on platform automation to provide an extremely consistent experience for our clients. Our current industries include financial services and insurance, healthcare, travel & hospitality, as well as retail and foods.

2.2 SAP

Another area we are strong in is SAP, which is the global standard for backbone systems. Our SAP solutions have industry specific accelerators that improve the speed and quality of implementations, and we can offer them to a great many clients including major enterprises. For example, around 2003 we provided SAP solutions to Honeywell, a major American conglomerate involved in manufacturing and the aerospace industry. In February 2011 we announced the start of the SAP Global One Team Initiative [2] to apply the SAP related resources of the NTT DATA Group on a global scale. By sharing SAP know-how in this way, the group is contributing to the realization of “one step support”. This includes a common methodology, standards, toolkits, and accelerators for a consistent delivery mechanism across the globe. Furthermore, in 2012 we developed a mobile system for the approximately 16,000 taxis in New York City (Fig. 1). The system involves inspectors making the rounds of the city and checking such things as whether the taxi drivers are violating traffic rules or whether their cabs have any broken lights. If they see any violations they input the taxi’s license number and the nature of the violation into a mobile device. When they do so, they get the driver’s history of violations and can use it to assess the appropriate fine for the latest violation. This has been evaluated as a major improvement over the old system of pulling the drivers over and giving them traffic tickets. Another feature of the system is that it can support multiple devices.

Fig. 1. Mobile system for recording taxi drivers’ traffic violations.

2.3 AMO/Gamification

NTT DATA, Inc. is constantly striving to develop a wide range of solutions and technologies. As an example, two years ago we developed an application management outsourcing (AMO) solution called DynAMO. Our gamification technology that makes a game out of the teaching materials for our in-house training provided by e-learning has been covered by such publications as the Harvard Business Review [3], and helped us to make the Information Week’s list of the 500 most innovative corporate users of business technology (Fig. 2).

Fig. 2. Screenshot of gamification technology that helped NTT DATA, Inc. make the Information Week’s list of the 500 most innovative corporate users of business technology.

The Ignite Gamification Platform that provides these functions comprises open source software and links corporate activities, social media, and mobility to enable development of a great variety of games for business purposes. In our solution for the Girl Guides Victoria, an Australian organization similar to the Girl Scouts, we used the Ignite Platform to create a customized social media platform (Fig. 3). This was in response to their desire to have a social media platform that the girls and their leaders could safely learn on together.

Fig. 3. Customized example of Ignite Gamification Platform.

2.4 Other

We also offer a high quality system development life cycle (SDLC), with design from testing to operation provided on demand. Our Testing Catalyst solution provides cloud services at low cost. Our agile software development model is easily applicable to the exacting standards of the U.S. federal government, and so we are able to provide its agencies and branches with high quality RAX software through NTT DATA Federal Services’ hybrid software development process (Fig. 4). These and other efforts enable us to offer cloud services to an extremely large customer base. Within the context of these various efforts, it may be said that our distinctive character as a company makes us especially noticeable in the areas of SAP, outsourcing, and gamification.

Fig. 4. RAX software development model.

* SAP is an acronym of a German software company that generally stands for Systems, Applications, and Products in Data Processing.

3. Future prospects

The source of our ideas and drive lies both within and outside the company. Within the company we have organized the CTO (Chief Technology Officer) Executive Council that solicits ideas from all divisions in the firm, and since CTO Sayeed is also a Senior Lecturer at MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology), he can get ideas from others in that capacity as well. Ideas also come from the NTT DATA Group in Japan. As an example, we set up a work group for Japan, and exchanging opinions with its highly motivated members brings forth new proposals and suggestions.

At present, we have a translation problem facing us. Since the NTT DATA Group’s intellectual property is in Japan, it takes considerable time to translate it for the benefit of U.S. clients. Furthermore, in the future we hope to concentrate on other areas, that is to say, to emphasize collaboration among Japan, Europe, and countries in the Asia-Pacific region. The Global One Team that NTT DATA organized in Japan in 2012 brings together participating group firms from the U.S., Europe, Japan, and the Asia-Pacific region; through such activities, we hope to solve the translation problem and enable the team to become a gateway to globalization. Among the technologies we retain, those we sincerely desire to introduce in Japan are our highly distinctive DynAMO and Testing Catalyst solutions.

4. Expectations of the NTT Group

I feel that a very favorable synergistic effect has been produced as a result of our coming into the NTT DATA Group. The extreme dedication the people in NTT DATA and the NTT Group show in their research and development (R&D) efforts in the areas of big data, cloud services, and mobile computing services makes us realize the benefits to be gained by being able to effectively utilize these R&D resources.

Many of the people who are developing technology solutions at our facilities in the U.S. and India were posted there from NTT DATA in Japan. And since, as I mentioned, Vertex provides services mainly to Japan, a substantial number of its employees speak Japanese.

We have very close ties with NTT Holding Company in the fields of cloud services, mobile computing services, and security. Since the NTT Group has invested heavily in R&D, we can look forward to further expansion in these fields.

We are also an active participant in the new R&D center NTT Innovation Institute, Inc. (NTT I3) established on April 1 this year. With the establishment of this organization we can anticipate further expansion of our R&D activities in the United States.

Looking over how things have gone since we came into the NTT DATA Group, I’m quite satisfied with the way this unique restructuring has enabled us to provide IT services. Our new tier-one global status will enable us to compete strongly to win larger deals in North America and will position us well as a younger, yet trusted provider comparable to other large onshore, as well as off-shore heritage firms. The U.S., Europe, and India all have their own different competitive environments, but with the global brand we’ve established in their markets I feel confident we can expect continuous growth in the future.


[2] NTT DATA, Inc., 2011 News.
[3] I. Sayeed and N. Meraj, “How a Game Got Our Global Employees to Collaborate,” Harvard Business Review.
Imran Sayeed
Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer, NTT DATA, Inc.
He came to NTT DATA through its acquisition of Keane, where he led a 7,000-person technology consulting organization. Before that, he founded netNumina, a boutique technology strategy and consulting firm that he grew from a 15-person startup to one of Computerworld’s Top 100 emerging companies and Inc 500’s fastest growing businesses. Previously, he was a founder of Open Environment, where he grew the company from a 10-person startup to an initial public offering (IPO). He is also part of the Entrepreneurship and Innovation faculty at the MIT Sloan School of Management. He holds a patent on Internet technology he jointly developed with Citibank, and he was named by Computerworld as one of the Premier 100 IT Leaders for 2013. He attended Brown University, where he majored in engineering, and Harvard University, where he did post-graduate work in business, marketing, and product development.
Vivek Mehra
Senior Vice President, Leader of Architecture & Development and the Solutions & Innovation group, NTT DATA, Inc.
He is a member of the NTT DATA CTO Council and has over 20 years of experience in technology innovation, IT services marketing, business development, IT strategy, systems integration, and data architecture. He has consulted for large corporations in multiple industries including financial services, insurance, healthcare, pharmaceuticals, automotive, and government. Previously at Keane, he was head of Global Financial Services and Insurance. Earlier, he served in business and IT leadership positions at Wipro/Nervewire, Pioneer Investments, State Street Global Advisors, and Cambridge Technology Partners, leading teams in Ireland, Germany, India, the UK, and the USA. He received the M.S. degrees in physics and computer science from the University of Massachusetts and the University of Georgia respectively; a Graduate Certificate in Administration & Management from Harvard University, and executive management certificates from MIT’s Sloan School of Management.