Accenture Interactive acquires 'Game of Thrones' visual effects team Mackevision

11 January 2018

Global consulting firm Accenture has revealed that it has entered into an agreement to acquire Mackevision. The international producer of 3D-enabled and immersive product content, perhaps best known for its work with ‘Game of Thrones’, will join Accenture’s expanding Interactive agency.

Mackevision, the award-winning visual effects team of HBO hit series ‘Game of Thrones,’ is set to break new ground as part of Accenture Interactive’s content practice, as it adds the capacity 3D visualisation, animation and visual effects capabilities to the rapidly growing agency. The group earned global acclaim for its work on HBO’s current flagship series, winning an Emmy for Outstanding Visual Effects along the way. Other high-profile clients include automotive industry players Audi, Jaguar, Mercedes-Benz and Porsche, among others, as Mackevision has achieved its most notable success in the automotive industry, where CGI-based and ‘digital twin’ visualisation has experienced some of its earliest adoption.

Accenture Interactive acquires Mackevision

Since its founding in 1994, Mackevision has built a team of more than 500 employees spread across is headquarters in Stuttgart, as well as fellow German offices in Munich and Hamburg, as well as in the United States, United Kingdom, China, South Korea and Japan. The company’s high-end creative and visual effects capability is especially relevant in the growing field of extended reality, where life-like models and environments are considered critical to creating fully-immersive experiences.

Accenture has spent the last 12 months pursuing an aggressive expansion strategy for its digital and design agency Accenture Interactive, and the deal for Mackevision follows hot on the heels of its latest addition – that of Cannes Lions winning agency Rothco. Both acquisitions have strengthened Accenture’s visualisation capacities, with Mackevision bringing state-of-the-art capabilities to the agency’s digital services portfolio. The addition of the 500 professionals with the group will further bolster Accenture’s digital arm, and its ability to create compelling, next-generation customer experiences and industrial, extended reality applications. The acquisition is subject to customary closing conditions, while financial terms of the transaction have not been disclosed.

Virtual Reality (VR) services have already burgeoned into a $1 billion industry, and Accenture hold an early leadership position in the Augmented Reality (AR) and VR services markets, having delivered consumer and enterprise experiences for clients such as BMW (a shared client of Mackevision) and Jeep in recent years, as well as having launched an Extended Reality (XR) practice. The acquisition of Mackevision will help Accenture significantly accelerate its ability to envision, create and operate XR solutions at scale for its clients and help drive the future of the XR market.

Jamie Posnanski, global content practice lead, Accenture Interactive, said of the acquisition, “This is truly a one-of-a-kind opportunity for us. Mackevision has a deep roster of highly-relevant creative and technical talent in emergent capabilities, and operates with mature offerings on a global scale. It’s rare to find this combination in the market.”

Brian Whipple, head of Accenture Interactive, added, “Mackevision’s capabilities will add a whole new dimension of content innovation to our portfolio of services. The ‘digital twin’ concept has massive implications not only from a scaled media production and marketing standpoint, but also for our broader vision of helping clients render the most compelling experiences possible.”

“With our more than 20 years’ experience in 3D visualisation, our visionary technology and our efficient Single-Source Publishing (SSP) approach, we create relevant, inspiring product and brand experiences with lasting impact,” said Mackevision CEO Armin Pohl. “ We have moved from being a content provider to providing relevant end-to-end solutions for our clients, and we’re looking forward to collaborating on creating meaningful client experiences on a global scale under Accenture Interactive.”


Royal HaskoningDHV buys UK firm to boost digital flood services

25 April 2019

Royal HaskoningDHV has acquired Ambiental to accelerate its growth of flood-related digital services. The UK-based professional services firm is a provider of actionable intelligence from data, which can be used to help protect people, property and capital from flooding and climate change.

In recent years the UK has been routinely stricken by flooding, with former forests and wetlands across the country having become susceptible to flooding, with few measures to soak up ground-water from heavy rainfall. Notably, 2007 floods along the River Don caused major social and economic damage to Lower Don Valley, while elsewhere in the UK, winter floods in 2013/2014 affected thousands, and killed 17. The following winter also saw considerable flooding across the UK from Storm Desmond, Storm Eva and Storm Frank, among other heavy storms, costing the nation billions of pounds in the process.

With a growing number of other incidences spread across the country, professional services firms are increasingly being tapped to help deal with flooding in the future. Founded three years ago, Ambiental Environmental Assessment was created to support the growing UK development industry with its flood risk assessment needs. Since then, it has worked on over 3,000 projects, including supporting the redevelopment of St Paul’s School, Richmond (EIA project), National Rail developments, gas-fed electricity generator compounds, solar farms, and the housing developments of over 400 properties.

Royal HaskoningDHV buys UK firm to boost digital flood services

In 2018 alone, natural disaster events across the world led to economic damage of $225 billion. With demand for flood risk assessment remaining high, Ambiental quickly attracted the attention of larger consultancies for acquisition. As a result, Royal HaskoningDHV has announced a deal to purchase Ambiental. The deal strengthens the Dutch consultancy's position in the insurance market, providing clients with data-driven software and services that complement its extensive engineering and advisory knowledge. The acquisition also enhances the firm’s flood resilience and environmental consultancy profile in the UK.

Ambiental, meanwhile, will considerably enhance its global presence and footprint with the deal. As a result, Ambiental hopes its combined unique data analytics, human resources and engineering expertise will allow it to improve its product offering and associated customer support. It will also mean the firm can further develop and scale its solutions in data products, software and associated services for improved risk pricing, risk selection, accumulation control, actionable intelligence and portfolio modelling.

Commenting on the deal, Royal HaskoningDHV CEO Erik Oostwegel said, “We are excited to welcome the Ambiental team with their high-precision, productised analytics and data solutions. Together we can help our clients to better understand and reduce risks from flooding and other natural hazards using digital services and market-leading intelligence. Ensuring that money spent on flood risk modelling and management delivers the greatest possible impact on communities, corporates and infrastructure.”

Ambiental CEO, Justin Butler, added, “Ambiental is very pleased to be joining Royal HaskoningDHV. We deliver many complementary solutions, and together with Royal HaskoningDHV and their new partners, we will be able to offer even more compelling value propositions, and broader solutions using predictive analytics, data science, machine learning and computational risk modelling to an expanding global customer base.”