Roland Berger Strategy Consultants has appointed Stefan Schaible and Tijo Collot d'Escury as Deputy CEOs. Schaible will lead the German businesses and the Central Europe region of the global strategy consultancy, while Collot d'Escury will head the Dutch, Northern Europe, UK and US regions. Both Deputy CEOs will report to Charles-Edouard Bouée, the recently appointed CEO.
Founded in 1967, Roland Berger Strategy Consultants is regarded by analysts as one of the top five global strategy consulting firms, and the only with a European origin. Following a few challenging years*, the company’s partner team end of last year recommitted themselves to operating as an independent consulting firm. Since Roland Berger has launched a new strategy, and implemented a number of changes to optimise its footprint, office profitability and internal efficiency. The firm currently has 2,700 employees working from 51 offices in 36 countries.
One of the agreements from the new strategic plan was to refresh the company’s top leadership. In June the first change was announced, with the appointment of Charles-Edouard Bouée as the new CEO, succeeding Roland Berger veteran Burkhard Schwenker, who moved to a position in the Supervisory Board. Bouée is the first non-German to head Roland Berger, following previous reigns by Schwenker (2003 to 2010 and 2013 to 2014) and Martin Wittig (2010 – 2013)**.
Following his appointment to the new role, Bouée presented his ideal leadership team to the Supervisory Board, and two months later, the decision has been ratified by Schwenker and his co-members. The global leadership team – known as the Global Executive Committee (GEC) – consists of the CEO (Bouée), two Deputy CEOs (Schaible and Collot d'Escury) and four other members. An overview:
Both new Deputy CEO’s are long-serving Roland Berger partners. Schaible started his career in 1997 at Roland Berger in Hamburg and was elected Partner in 2001. Following several leadership roles, he now has been given the responsibility for the business in Central Europe, which encompasses Germany, Switzerland, Central and Eastern Europe and the CIS states. In addition, he serves as CEO of the German operations of Roland Berger. Collot d'Escury began his career with Arthur D. Little in The Netherlands, and in 2002, following the turmoil within the American consultancy***, he joined Roland Berger in 2002 as Managing Partner of the Dutch office, which he built up from the very start. Between 2003 to 2010 he was a member of the Supervisory Board and later he also served as a member of the Executive Committee.
“Our new set-up highlights our firm's great potential of excellent leaders. I do look very much forward to working with them", says Bouée. According to Schwenker, with the new leadership structure and team in place Roland Berger is better equipped to further build its market share and footprint. “We have chosen a very efficient set-up that allows us to fully focus on our clients and markets.”
* Roland Berger was nearly acquired by Deloitte Consulting in 2010, yet the deal feel through at the last moment, following a last-minute capital injection by founder Roland Berger. Last year Roland Berger announced that it was considering its strategic options, which sparked the interest of several rival consulting firms, including the Big 4 players. At the end of the line EY came closest to poaching the firm, yet comparable to the previous time the partners choose to remain independent.
** In May 2013 Martin Wittig stepped down as CEO to focus on his health.
*** In 2001 Arthur D. Little (ADL) came in acute financial difficulty following large losses in its US practice. In The Netherlands the ADL team disintegrated into among others a team of seven that joined Roland Berger (under the leadership of Collot d'Escury) and a team of fifteen that founded a new firm named Quintel Strategy Consulting, which was acquired by A.T. Kearney early 2011. At the time, several consulting firms showed interest in buying Arthur D. Little – including Monitor, PA Consulting Group and Mercer – yet after those negotiations fell through it was in 2002 bought by French Altran. In 2012 it decided to regain its independence through a buy-out, and since the firm is under the leadership of Ignacio García Alves returning to growth.