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Detecon Success Story: 40 Years of Digital Change Made in Germany

Telekom's technology management consultancy turns 40 years young

Major anniversary celebration in Cologne looks back on digital success stories "Made in Germany

Foundation of new technology centers announced

A “hidden champion” of digitalization: Detecon International, leading German management and technology consultancy, headquarters in Cologne, celebrated into its 40th anniversary (founded: 7/7/77) with a grand jubilee celebration on 6 July. Telekom Group’s own management consultancy guides national and international clients through the process of digital transformation.

So it is no surprise that the dominant theme of the evening, attended by about 1,000 guests and employees in Cologne’s Halle Tor 2, was digitalization and its challenges; clients, employees, and a number of contemporaries shared personal memories, but also looked at the present and future of the digitalized world depicted in the latest technologies and trends as well as the displayed exhibits and project examples.

In keeping with the theme of “40th Summer of Digitalization”, the panel discussions described the many examples of success, making it clear “that Germany is anything but a digital developing country,” as Detecon CEO Heinrich Arnold declared. Special emphasis was placed on the viewpoint that the future is to be found above all in the cross-sector ecosystems that are now springing up; they require cross-industry partnerships so that the opportunities of digital technologies that are today still undreamed of can be exploited. Otherwise, companies will merely create new “islands” of individual digitalization projects, even on the Internet of Things, that will not be able to develop more than limited impact. Among the panel members taking part in the discussions were digitalization experts such as Uli Huener (CINO EnBW), Dirk Müller (CIO Haniel and CEO Schacht One), Mario Pieper (CDO Bosch and Siemens Hausgeräte), Nils Stamm (CDO Deutsche Telekom), and Peter Klingenburg (managing director T-Systems Multimedia Solutions).

Establishment of a Digital Engineering Center announced

“Now that Internet technology is propelling digital transformation across all sectors, it is important to have supporters who can provide effective help during the construction of digital prototypes and the subsequent implementation and not just in the development of strategies for new business models,” emphasized Arnold in pointing out the added value offered by corporate consultancies such as Detecon. Detecon also announced on this evening the establishment of a crossover Digital Engineering Center for Cyber-Security, Data Analytics, and Co-Innovation that will buttress digital consulting topics in future even more solidly with profound technological expertise. The Center is scheduled to be opened at the new Detecon location in Berlin on 7 September. Using virtual collaboration, employees at Cologne headquarters as well as at all other offices around the world will be able to contribute to the innovations in the Engineering Center.

Inventor of the text message was a Detecon project manager

Technology transformation and its potential have been the focus of Detecon’s work right from the very beginning. Established in 1977, even before the German Postal Service [Bundespost], as “Deutsche Telepost Consulting” with the objective of offering consulting services related to telecommunications around the world, the business field quickly expanded to encompass computer science, mobile services, and digitalization. The year 1992 was a very special highlight of the company’s history. As part of the Detecon project “Digital Mobile Communications”, the pan-European GSM standard in mobile technology was defined and Telekom’s digital D1 mobile network was launched. Within the framework of this project, the team headed by Detecon project manager Friedhelm Hillebrand also invented the text message (SMS).

“Just as Detecon at that time served as the incubator, so to speak, for the later T-Mobile, we start working today at a very early stage with digital technologies that are ahead of their time. They also include hybrid solutions merging digital business services and analog products. Our goal is to anchor product-oriented business models so firmly on the Internet that they will continue to be successful even in the middle and long term,” summarized Detecon CEO Heinrich Arnold.

The management consultancy Detecon is represented by offices all around the globe today. More than 1,100 employees work for the company worldwide, over 900 of them in Germany. Germany realized revenues of €223 million in 2016, the best fiscal year in the company’s history.

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