1. Analysis
March 7, 2022

Filings buzz: tracking internet of things mentions in the tech sector

By Verdict Staff

Mentions of the internet of things within the filings of companies in the tech sector were 2% higher between October 2020 and September 2021 than in 2016, according to the latest analysis of data from GlobalData.

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When tech companies publish annual and quarterly reports, ESG reports and other filings, GlobalData analyses the text and identifies individual sentences that relate to disruptive forces facing companies in the coming years. The internet of things is one of these topics – companies that excel and invest in these areas are thought to be better prepared for the future business landscape and better equipped to survive unforeseen challenges.

To assess whether the internet of things is featuring more in the summaries and strategies of tech companies, two measures were calculated. Firstly, we looked at the percentage of companies which have mentioned the internet of things at least once in filings during the past twelve months – this was 75% compared to 71% in 2016. Secondly, we calculated the percentage of total analysed sentences that referred to the internet of things.

Of the 50 biggest employers in the tech sector, China Mobile Ltd was the company which referred to the internet of things the most between October 2020 and September 2021. GlobalData identified 61 internet of things-related sentences in the Hong Kong-based company’s filings – 1.9% of all sentences. Vodafone Group Plc mentioned the internet of things the second most – the issue was referred to in 1.3% of sentences in the company’s filings. Other top employers with high internet of things mentions included China Communications Services Corp Ltd, Atos SE and Huawei Investment & Holding Co Ltd.

Across all tech companies the filing published in the third quarter of 2021 which exhibited the greatest focus on the internet of things came from Far Eastone Telecommunications Co Ltd. Of the document’s 1,428 sentences, 60 (4.2%) referred to the internet of things.

This analysis provides an approximate indication of which companies are focusing on the internet of things and how important the issue is considered within the tech sector, but it also has limitations and should be interpreted carefully. For example, a company mentioning the internet of things more regularly is not necessarily proof that they are utilising new techniques or prioritising the issue, nor does it indicate whether the company’s ventures into the internet of things have been successes or failures.

GlobalData also categorises internet of things mentions by a series of subthemes. Of these subthemes, the most commonly referred to topic in the third quarter of 2021 was ‘automated home’, which made up 27% of all internet of things subtheme mentions by tech companies.

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Verdict deals analysis methodology

This analysis considers only announced and completed artificial intelligence deals from the GlobalData financial deals database and excludes all terminated and rumoured deals. Country and industry are defined according to the headquarters and dominant industry of the target firm. The term ‘acquisition’ refers to both completed deals and those in the bidding stage.

GlobalData tracks real-time data concerning all merger and acquisition, private equity/venture capital and asset transaction activity around the world from thousands of company websites and other reliable sources.

More in-depth reports and analysis on all reported deals are available for subscribers to GlobalData’s deals database.

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