IT services provider Cognizant has launched its Digital Business Collaboratory in Melbourne.
The space brings together technology, managed innovation processes and a team of experts that can help customers design, prototype and build digital solutions with Cognizant and its partners.
The Collaboratory is expected to create more than 100 jobs over the next three years.
Philip Dalidakis, small business, innovation and trade minister for Victoria, cut the digital ribbon with a virtual reality lightsabre.
"Cognizant’s new Collaboratory opening in Victoria is a huge vote of confidence for our local tech sector and the growing talent pool we have here," Dalidakis said.
During the opening ceremony, US-based Cognizant demonstrated the potential of the space by providing a snapshot of Melbourne in the year 2030 through innovative applications of technology. This included:
- Making data about Melbourne’s people, places, services and events available on a single platform to Melbournians;
- Creating a safe and eco-friendly network of autonomous vehicles that can understand each other’s location, speed and intent by using broadcast signals from beacons and other vehicles;
- Making customer purchases available across a wider array of cafés to expand the ‘pay it forward’ initiative, where customers pay for an extra coffee or meal with their purchase to help a homeless person.
John Burgin, Cognizant's head of digital business Asia-Pacific and Middle East, said: "Our Collaboratory in Melbourne will bring the internet of things to life and apply artificial intelligence to deliver brand new experiences for people. The Collaboratory integrates these elements in a practical creative space that will help our clients and partners innovate securely and quickly."
The space includes a showcase of new technologies in action, a fabrication space for prototyping, tools for collaboration and configurable workspaces for innovation.
Through the Collaboratory, clients will have access to the end-to-end managed innovation offerings of Cognizant Digital Business. The Melbourne Collaboratory will connect into Cognizant’s global network of digital solution facilities, allowing business leaders access to shared perspectives, prototypes, and experiences.
In December 2016, Cognizant announced it had entered an agreement to buy Sydney consultancy firm Adaptra.
The company had previously been criticised by activist technology investment fund Elliott Management for being slow to use cash to strengthen its digital footprint.
Adaptra specialises in the insurance vertical and works with five of the top 10 insurers in Australia and New Zealand.