The more than 30-year government contracting veteran is a certified public accountant and earlier consulted and audited government contractors with Arthur Andersen, focusing on federal acquisition and cost accounting standards compliance.
Alan Hill, Serco’s vice president for corporate communications, told GovCon Wire Wednesday that Shankman is joined at the firm by Chris Sullivan, who assumed the chief information officer position also on Jan. 1.
Sullivan brings more than 25 years in information technology sector experience to the role and previously served as VP and CIO of Computer Sciences Corp.‘s North American public sector.
As CFO, Shankman now holds responsibility for all corporate finance and accounting functions, and Hill said he will play an important role in the company’s strategic planning.
“He has a lot of focus on strategic planning and M&A, ” Hill said. “We have a track record in the past of acquiring companies and we will continue looking at acquisitions.”
Shankman’s executive roles with Arthur Andersen included head of mergers and acquisitions. “The government contracting industy is very different and his vast experince in the GovCon industy is going to be a asset for us, ” Hill said.
Hill added that Sullivan will oversee the strategic direction of all of Serco’s IT systems and work to improve the IT infrastructure’s ability to support growth in new directions.
One critical component will be leveraging the accounting and finance operations and systems necessary to grow a contractor.
Hill emphasized that Serco sees great potential in the two executives’ experience driving growth at companies larger than Serco, particularly as Serco looks to own a larger percentage of the U.S. government healthcare and other growth markets.
“These are tougher times than we’ve seen in the past and we’re taking a very hard look at areas in the market where customers and where the budgets are growing, ” Hill said. “We’re also looking at areas where there are growth opportunities in the future.”
Sullivan was responsible for operations that generate around $6 billion and employ close to 30, 000 workers at CSC, Hill said, while SAIC’s defense segment generates around $4.6 billion in annual revenue and employs around 14, 000 individuals.
Serco North America’s around 8, 500 employees and $1.3 billion revenue form part of Serco Group’s around 120, 000 worldwide employees and $7 billion of annual revenue.
“North American growth is a priority of ours, ” Hill said. “We have a plan and vision for being a much larger company.”