Slalom Consulting expands into Canada with Toronto office

20 May 2016 Consultancy.uk

North American consultancy Slalom Consulting has recently expanded into Canada with the opening of an office in Toronto, its 22nd hub globally.

With nearly 4,000 consultants, and revenues of more than $550 million, Slalom Consulting is one of the larger management and technology consultancies in North America. The advisory firm, founded in 2001 in Seattle, spent the first 13 years of its life growing its ranks in the US – by the start of 2014 the firm had grown its revenues to around $480 million. In the summer of 2014 the consultancy for the first time went international, and set foot on UK soil, opening an office in London. Run by Alex Qatsha, a former consultant of Unisys, Accenture and Deloitte, the London operation has enjoyed a growing track record across the UK and European clients and industries.

In January this year the US consultancy expanded its wings into its third market outside the US, with Canada the somewhat closer to home destination. Slalom's recently opened Canadian office is based in Toronto (8 King Street East) and led by Saskatchewan native Wayne Ingram, who joined the firm in the summer of 2015 from Accenture and has managed the setup and growth of the office. In his latest role at Accenture, Ingram served as a Managing Director, and throughout his 25+ years with the firm he held various leadership roles in Canada, Europe and the United States. Latterly, Ingram worked as Global Managing Director for Enterprise Architecture and Application Strategy, and prior to that he led Accenture’s Technology Practice in Canada.

Slalom Consulting opens office in Toronto

Over the past months Slalom Consulting has seen its team in Toronto take off in size, on the back of a rapidly expanding base of Canadian clients. Ingram says the consulting firm today boasts a team of around “60 highly skilled consultants”, and adds that the Toronto venture expects further growth in the second half of 2016 in step with a variety of engagements that are set to kick off in the period. Asked for what he believes is the recipe behind the firm’s ability to stand out from the consulting crowd, Ingram says: “In a global market where innovation is increasingly important to keep and stay ahead of the competition, Canadian companies need to quickly develop solutions and bring them to market. Slalom helps clients accelerate this process with an agile approach to problem solving and a proven ability to innovate and execute.”

The consultancy can in particular leverage its business and technology experience in the US, he says, and build on award-winning partnerships with solution providers like Amazon Web Services, Microsoft, Salesforce, and Tableau.

Looking further ahead, Ingram says Slalom has set its sights on further penetration in Canada, highlighting Vancouver, Calgary, Ottawa and Montreal as the key targets for following office openings. “Slalom has the agility, energy, and culture of a start-up combined with the resources, reach, and scale of a global company, allowing us to think big, act fast, and see results,” he comments. “I believe it is critical to drive innovation here in Canada. I know what we are capable of and that is why I am passionate about the freedom Slalom gives to its employees and brings to its clients to not only solve a problem, but implement the solution.”

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Newcastle consulting firm opens Baghdad office

05 April 2019 Consultancy.uk

A Newcastle-based consultancy has announced it will open its first office in Iraq. The news comes despite warnings that the area remains “high risk” for businesses.

16 years after the start of Operation Iraqi Freedom, the nation remains a shadow of its former self. The continued chaos wrought by the Iraq War – which eventually played a role in the rise to prominence of Daesh, further destabilising the region – means that even now, the nation’s capital is deemed to have the lowest quality of living in the world. According to a recent survey from Mercer, Baghdad ranked last overall – immediately below Bangui of the Central African Republic and Damascus in Syria – despite the other two being determined as the worst cities on the planet for personal safety.

However, as with the wider Middle East, the oil-rich state presents a lucrative destination to businesses willing to take the risk. To that end, a Newcastle recruitment consultancy has announced the opening of its first presence in Iraq’s capital city. Samuel Knight has taken the decision to open its Baghdad locale in order to grow its business in the Middle East.

Newcastle consulting firm opens Baghdad office

While businesses remain wary of the region, Samuel Knight specialises in recruiting talent in the energy and rail sectors, and in a release it said the new office would continue to focus on these areas. It will also allow the firm to make sure it abides by local compliance laws. The new location will be headed up by Haider Kadhim, Samuel Knight’s Iraq country manager, who will work as the first point of contact for clients and candidates. Representatives from the Department of Trade Industry are expected to attend a launch event for the office, which will be held this month.

Commenting on the new office,  a spokesperson for Samuel Knight said, “We probably don’t see it as a risk, but more of an opportunity, as we operate in the Middle East extensively already. We have contacts in place in the country location and with the consultants we have. We felt it was a great opportunity to expand into a country we are already doing work in. It means we have an on-the-ground team to help our clients. From our perspective, it is that we are looking to expand into new territories, but we are also supporting countries that are starting to redevelop after years of warfare.”

Steve Rawlingson, CEO at Samuel Knight, said, “Our aggressive five-year growth plan is manifesting at  an impressive rate, taking the company to exciting new territories. The team is working diligently to surpass expectations set out in the plan, and to ensure Samuel Knight is cemented as the leading global energy and rail recruitment specialist. Our Baghdad office will give us a distinctive edge over our competition and allow for more exciting business opportunities. Once the office becomes more established and client acquisition develops, we will certainly be adding more consultants and manpower in the city.”