The year 2014 is an extraordinary year for A.T. Kearney and McKinsey & Company in Germany. Exactly 50 years ago they opened their first offices in our eastern neighbouring country, coincidentally both in the city of Dusseldorf, Germany. In the honour of reaching this marvelous milestone a special event was organised for approximately 250 executives, entrepreneurs and media representatives in the city of Berlin. Attention was drawn to the history of these two consultancy firms and the advisory market’s future trends.
Mckinsey & Company was founded by an accountancy academic in the year 1926 named James Mckinsey. MicKinsey was advising clients in the field of management. The consultancy branche was merely 40 years old at the time (Arthur D. Little was founded in 1886). It was a niche market in which consultants were primarily focused on mapping cost structures. Marvin Bower 'the father of modern management consultancy' (as stated by Harvard business school) joined McKinsey in 1933. During the thirties and forties this consultancy firm made huge progress under his guidance. Gradually the United States’ market was penetrated. As a result internationalization followed in the fifties. In the year 1959, the first office outside of the United States was opened in London.
In the year 1964, another company was founded in Dusseldorf. Since then McKinsey & Company has grown to become the largest strategy consulting firm in the world with 7.500 consultants working in offices in over 50 countries. By estimation this company also has yielded over 27.000 alumni.
According to A.T. Kearney, their company was founded in 1926. It wasn’t only up until 1947 that the name A.T. Kearney had been made official. Founder Tom Kearney renamed his firm from ''McKinsey, Kearney & Company'' to A.T. Kearney. In 1929 founder James McKinsey hired Ander Kearney becoming the firm's first partner. After the unexpected death of James McKinsey in 1937, the partners had disagreements over how to run the company. As a consequence McKinsey was divided into three firms, namely: Scovell, Wellington & Company (accounting practise), McKinsey, Kearney and Company (Chicago office; led by Andrew Kearny) and McKinsey & Company (New York office; led by Marvin Bower). In the year 1947, Bower purchased the exclusive rights to the name McKinsey & Company from Tom Kearney, who renamed his firm A.T. Kearney.
In 1964 A.T. Kearney opened its first international office in the German city of Düsseldorf. Within a few years offices followed in Milan, Paris, and London. The Amsterdam office of A.T. Kearney was opened in the year 1980. Following a 11-year spell period under the flag of IT-service company EDS, which nearly led to its downfall, since 2006, after an MBO, A.T. Kearney operates again as an independent consulting firm. In the year 2014 A.T. Kearney is listed in the top-5 strategic consultancy firms in the world, having 3.500 consultants, working in 59 offices spread over 40 countries.
German consultancy market
The German management consulting market has an estimated market value of €22,3 billion. With an approximate 600 million turnover, McKinsey & Company is the biggest management consultancy firm in the country. For more information check out this article ‘Top 8 management consultancy firms in Germany’.