Applied artificial intelligence leader Dr. JT Kostman joins Grant Thornton


ISELIN, N.J. -- JT Kostman, Ph.D., an internationally recognized leader in cognitive computing, applied artificial intelligence, and data strategy, has joined Grant Thornton LLP as managing director of applied artificial intelligence. In this new role, Kostman will lead the development and delivery of artificial intelligence, machine learning, IoT, blockchain, and advanced analytic solutions and services for the firm and Grant Thornton clients. He will be based in the firm's Iselin, N.J., office and will report into National Managing Principal of Innovation Kevin Baril. Kostman is a data scientist, mathematician and psychologist renowned for his expertise in applied artificial intelligence and cognitive computing. He boasts an impressive pedigree – having served as chief data officer and a member of the executive committee for Time Inc., chief data scientist for Samsung, and chief data scientist and big data psychologist for Aptus Insights.

Grant Thornton collaborates with Microsoft and Hitachi Solutions


CHICAGO -- Grant Thornton LLP is collaborating with Microsoft and Hitachi Solutions to turn information into foresight. The collaboration uses artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) to help Grant Thornton identify its clients' nascent business needs. Grant Thornton can then design solutions to address its clients' challenges before they balloon. As one of the nation's largest accounting, tax and consulting firms, Grant Thornton works with clients to overcome all manner of hurdles, from financial and operational to technological and risk-related. "We focus on staying ahead of our clients' needs," explains Nichole Jordan, Grant Thornton's national managing partner of Markets, Clients and Industry.

Philippine firms asked to embrace artificial intelligence


Companies in the Philippines need to adopt technologies like automation and artificial intelligence to get rid of repetitive and redundant processes, a partner of business advisory firm Grant Thornton says. Grant Thornton partner Depender Kumar Depender Kumar, in his presentation during the 8th P&A Grant Thornton Business Forum in Manila, says Philippine companies, including business process outsourcing providers, are slow to embrace automation and struggle to change. "To be honest, if they [BPOs] don't change the way they do things, they will pay locally for the disruption. Most of what is done by the BPOs are repetitive. You don't need a lot of intelligence to do the work that is with you.

CFOs betting big on AI, machine learning, robotics process automation as business goes digital


CFOs have increased their bets on artificial intelligence, machine learning, robotic process automation, analytics and blockchain as they are looking automate to boost savings, efficiency and agility, according to a Grant Thornton survey. Grant Thornton and CFO Research surveyed 378 senior finance executives from companies with revenue between $100 million and more than $20 billion. The findings reveal that CFOs are ready to invest heavily in emerging technologies as well as digital transformation. The digital transformation journey will also require CFOs to alter their mindset when it comes to technology investments. CFOs must be willing to experiment--and incur failures along the way--or risk falling behind.

Gourmet Burger Kitchen plans to close 17 stores to stay afloat

BBC News

Gourmet Burger Kitchen (GBK) says it has earmarked 17 restaurants for closure after running up millions of pounds of losses. The chain, owned by South Africa's Famous Brands, has filed for a Company Voluntary Arrangement - an insolvency process that allows struggling firms to close unprofitable stores. It warned 250 jobs were at risk under the plan, which still needs approval. GBK operates about 80 restaurants in the UK and employs 2,000 people. Earlier this month, Famous Brands said GBK had booked a £47m loss amid tough trading conditions.