CGI history

CGI history

Our history F ounded in 1976, CGI is a leading end-to-end IT and business consulting services provider. Our 40-plus years of continuous profitable g...

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Our history


ounded in 1976, CGI is a leading end-to-end IT and business consulting services provider. Our 40-plus years of continuous profitable growth is a testament to the confidence our clients place in us, to the commitment of our members, and to the sound business model and sustaining principles on which we were founded.

1976-1986 Serge Godin founded CGI in Québec City, Canada, in June 1976. A few months later, André Imbeau joined him and together they committed themselves to build a company based upon a shared dream: "To create an environment in which we enjoy working together and, as owners, contribute to building a company we can be proud of." The name “CGI” is the French acronym for “Conseillers en gestion et informatique,” which means information systems and management consultants. In English, the acronym stands for “Consultants to Government and Industry.” In CGI’s first 10 years, the growing team of highly qualified professionals joining CGI helped craft the company’s principles and beliefs. These have since been documented within the CGI Constitution, which encompasses our dream, mission, vision and values. CGI’s business strategy was, and remains today, tightly linked to the following: helping our clients achieve success, sustaining long-term growth, and providing fulfilling career opportunities for our professionals. This strategy requires creating a financially sound environment in which all key stakeholders—clients, members and shareholders—prosper. From the outset, a performance-based management and monitoring system for all functions was put in place to ensure that opportunities could be identified and addressed quickly. Strong and accountable leaders with the right level of empowerment allowed the company to expand rapidly. During this period, the IT services market was in its infancy. Demand for IT services evolved to include new types of requirements, including fixed-price and systems integration contracts. CGI evolved from a consulting company to a consulting and systems integration company. Near the end of this decade, our targeted clientele began to consider and, in many cases, chose to outsource their IT functions. CGI responded by preparing a strategy to enter the emerging outsourcing market. 1986-1996 In 1986, CGI began to acquire outsourcing companies. At that time, CGI’s annual revenue was $25 million, and the first acquired company (BST) had an annual revenue of $8 million. To finance the transaction, CGI became a public company, issuing 800,000 Class A subordinate voting shares at an opening price of $6.50. With this acquisition, CGI was in a position to offer the full continuum of IT services—technology and management consulting, systems integration and IT outsourcing. © NOVEMBRE 2017 CGI GROUP INC.

A few years later, client consultations with CEOs, CFOs and operation leaders identified two key trends: business processes services (BPS) and globalization. CGI responded by expanding into geographies where clients’ operations were located and by developing strategies to grow and acquire BPS operations. In 1992, the initial version of the CGI Management Foundation was created to serve as the backbone for all management frameworks, policies and guidelines. The CGI Management Foundation ensures the alignment of management principles and decision making to achieve balance between the interests of CGI’s key stakeholders. This allowed CGI to make sound business decisions and to continue to grow healthily. Throughout our evolution, CGI has maintained a steadfast focus on delivering quality services to our clients. To demonstrate this commitment, we sought external recognition of our quality assurance efforts. In 1994, CGI became the first IT consulting firm in North America to comply with the internationally recognized ISO quality standard. CGI earned ISO 9001 certification for our project management framework. This certification has since evolved to include all management frameworks pertaining to CGI’s partnership with key stakeholders. Management attention was concentrated on growing and consolidating the capabilities of the company while remaining financially healthy. By the end of fiscal 1996, CGI’s annual revenue had grown to $122 million. 1996-2006 By this period our target clientele was comprised of the world leaders of their respective industries. To help these clients succeed required local critical mass in key regions, a deep knowledge of their business sectors, proven solutions and specialized practices. CGI continued to evolve to respond to these business demands. With the IT industry rapidly maturing, globalization and consolidation became key characteristics of this period. Faithful to a commitment to long-term, independent viability, CGI was positioned to be one of the IT and BPS industry consolidators. Executing on CGI’s “Build and Buy” growth strategy became the focus during this period of expansion. That strategy, which continues today, aims to meet client requirements and achieve growth targets through the following: • •

Build: Growth through new business generated from existing and new clients Buy: Growth through acquisitions that are strictly contingent on strategic fit, synergies and a positive financial contribution

The following are the major acquisitions that significantly changed CGI’s size and presence in key geographies: • • •

In 1998, CGI’s merger with Bell Sygma led to the signing of the largest Canadian outsourcing contract of that time, nearly doubling the size of the company. In 2001, CGI acquired IMRGlobal to add Indian operations to our portfolio, providing clients with expanded global delivery options. In 2004, CGI acquired American Management System (AMS). This transaction doubled the size of CGI in the United States and tripled the size of our presence in Europe.

From an IT industry point of view, two significant events known as the “Y2K bug” and the “Internet bubble” influenced the business dynamics of this period. Anchored on ethical and sound business principles and values, CGI continued to grow steadily and profitably throughout these events and more importantly in their aftermath. By the end of fiscal 2006, CGI’s annual revenue reached $3.5 billion. © NOVEMBER 2017 CGI GROUP INC.

2006 – Present This decade marks a continued commitment to the fundamentals that help all of CGI’s stakeholders succeed, and the fulfillment of CGI’s strategic objective of doubling the size of the company. In 2010, CGI acquired Stanley Inc., including Stanley’s subsidiary operations Oberon and Techrizon. The acquisition nearly doubled the size of CGI’s U.S. operations. In addition, the combination of talent and capabilities created further opportunity for growth in the key U.S. federal market, particularly in the defense and intelligence sector. Two years later, we made our largest acquisition to date, merging with the Anglo-Dutch business and technology services company Logica. The acquisition increased the size of our staff from 31,000 to 68,000 professionals and offered greater presence, service capabilities and expertise for our clients across the Americas, Europe and Asia. With this acquisition, we became the world’s fifth largest independent IT and business consulting services firm in the world. Today, with a presence in hundreds of locations worldwide, strong industry expertise and end-to-end IT services, CGI is able to meet our clients’ business needs anywhere, anytime. We continue to strive to be recognized by clients, members and shareholders as a world class IT and business consulting services leader. While remaining true to our Constitution, CGI continues to adapt to best respond to changes in the IT market, the local and global business climate of clients, and to our professionals’ and shareholders’ expectations. The future… As demonstrated by our performance, CGI is focused on running a sound and stable business for the long term. For CGI, global growth is not an option; it is a necessity. As markets globalize, so do our clients. We are dedicated to growing and expanding our capabilities to serve our clients as they increase their size and reach. As demonstrated by our history, CGI is committed to helping clients succeed; providing our professionals with rewarding careers; and offering shareholders superior returns over time.

For more information, please contact us at [email protected] or visit © NOVEMBER 2017 CGI GROUP INC.