Australian NBN spent quarter of a billion on advisory

06 October 2014

Australia’s National Broadband Network has spent almost a quarter of a billion on external advisors in the past four years. Of the $50.5 spent in fiscal year 2014, the Boston Consulting Group claimed the highest percentage with almost $14 million.

NBN Co, an in 2009 established company to design, build and operate Australia’s National Broadband Network, has reportedly spent around $50.5 million on consulting firms in fiscal year (FY) 2014. The company has hired several consulting firms, spending the biggest portion of the budget on The Boston Consulting Group (BCG), that received $13.49 million in return for providing the company with a review of its rollout options of several services. Other consulting firms claiming considerable shares are KordaMentha that received $4.05 million for a review of NBN Co's Directors and Corporate Governance, and Deloitte that earned $3.27 million.


The massive spending of NBN Co on external advisory services can no longer be called a surprise. In the past two years, the company spent over $140 million on ‘external service costs’, with $73.05 million in FY13 and $67.8 in FY12. In the four years until June 30, 2013, the total fees for consultants and lawyers amount to almost a quarter of a billion. “The total sum spent on consultants and legal costs for the four-year period from July 1, 2009 to June 30, 2013 was $224.4 million,” state NBN Co.

Australian spending
With a total spending of more than $4.2 billion on consultants in 2013, Australia is according to analyst firm Source the second largest spender on consultants in the world, relative to GDP, after the UK.