Building the ultimate business incubator

KPMG helped Qualcomm leverage cloud-based architecture and develop a process library so that new businesses can “plug and play” from a standing start.

Business model and enterprise architecture transformation
  • Client challenge
  • Benefits to client
  • Approach
  • KPMG insights

Client challenge

As a world leader in next-generation mobile communications, innovation has been a fundamental pillar of Qualcomm’s corporate strategy. The company acquires and incubates businesses that design, develop, and market products that sell to consumers, through channel partners, and to other businesses.

Historically, each new business operated autonomously, but Qualcomm found that it was spending too much time and money on the deployment of internal support functions instead of focusing on go-to-market strategies. Qualcomm needed a common set of processes and an enabling IT architecture that would support various e-commerce business models so new businesses could adopt them quickly and easily.

Benefits to client

With valuable help from KPMG and a core set of cloud service providers, Qualcomm and its new businesses now focus on their corporate strategy and continue to innovate without having to build a new infrastructure with each launch. Benefits include:

  • a blueprint for enabling its emerging businesses to get to market faster and at a lower cost
  • a library of processes that immediately enables new businesses to operate efficiently and effectively 
  • a cloud-based SaaS architecture that is modular, scalable, and can be deployed as needed to support new businesses.


In a situation that called for breakthrough thinking, KPMG helped Qualcomm develop a transformative business model. By removing the burden of building an internal support organization for each of its new businesses, we enabled teams to focus on strategy, markets, and growth. Our approach included:

Process design: To speed time to market for new solutions, we designed and documented a set of processes to support the e-commerce and back-office operations of Qualcomm’s emerging businesses.

Architecture design: We designed a reference IT architecture to support the company’s e-commerce, back-office process, and functionality requirements. We helped the company define a 100 percent cloud-based software-as-a-service architecture encompassing hundreds of core business processes that help it incubate start-up firms and empower them to enter the market faster and at a lower cost. 

Technology selection: We helped Qualcomm source and select cloud and SaaS vendors to support the end-toend architecture design.

Proof-of-concept deployment: Our team conducted a proof of concept with several SaaS vendors to demonstrate the enabling architecture and its interoperability with core processes and technologies.

Education: We hosted a series of meetings to facilitate Qualcomm leaders' and managers' understanding of key aspects of using, building, and delivering cloud services and solutions. The sessions included discussions about privacy and security when  using the cloud, e-commerce and mobile-payment models, customer experience management, and control.

KPMG insights

Agility is the overarching goal of every business model transformation initiative

Whatever agility means in your organization’s context, you can’t view it through a single lens such as processes or technology. Instead, you need to approach your transformation program from an end-to-end value chain perspective, considering how every component of the value chain will benefit from greater agility.

Flexibility is the watchword when designing a business model transformation

Resolute alignment to a particular technology, vendor, or way of doing things may not be in your best interest. Instead, you should start by defining your anticipated business outcomes, and then explore the opportunity with a range of providers, including lesser known companies willing to invest in bringing to life a solution that addresses your unique needs.

A 100% cloud-based modular, scalable SaaS architecture helps the company's start-ups stay focused on go-to-market strategy.