Sia Partners acquires British boutiques Inzenka and SKT Consulting

28 September 2018

Sia Partners has bolstered its presence in the UK with the acquisition of London-based consulting firms Inzenka and SKT Consulting. The deals adds around 30 consultants to Sia Partners’ UK team, taking the firm’s headcount to 80 partners and consultants.

Commenting on the pair of bolt-ons, Sia Partners’s founder and CEO Matthieu Courtecuisse said “I am delighted to welcome Inzenka and SKT Consulting to Sia Partners. The UK has become our third most dynamic market reflecting companies’ increasing need of guidance to prepare for Brexit. Reinforcing our UK teams makes us better able to serve our clients at this critical time and through their strategic changes.”

The two acquisitions come two years after Sia Partners bought London-based management consultancy Molten, a move that at the time doubled the firm’s headcount and established the consultancy as a serious player in UK’s £9.8 billion consulting industry. Building on the ramp-up following the Inzenka and SKT Consulting additions, Courtecuisse said that Sia Partners has set out the ambition to accelerate its growth, targeting 20% annual growth over the next three years. “The objective is to reach over 150 consultants in the UK by 2020 or before.”

Inzenka is a consulting firm that specialises in growth and innovation consultancy. “We identify, build and launch commercially successful new ventures and propositions for the world’s biggest and most exciting companies. We specialise in harnessing disruptive innovation and we deliver growth. Over the past 12 years, we’ve developed and launched more than a 100 new propositions,” explained Larry Zentner, Inzenka’s founder. The London-based consultancy for instance helped Philips, Pfizer, AstraZeneca and NHS with launching innovations in healthcare, Royal Mail was advised on designing its evening delivery, while in the retail space Inzenka worked for among others Danone, Unilever, P&G, Reckitt Benckiser, SAB Miller, Pernod Ricard and Sainsbury's. Other major names that shine on the firm’s client roster include Alcatel Lucent, Airbus, BAE Systems, Barclays, BT, Reed Elsevier and Vodafone.

Currently, Inzenka generates revenues of £3.5 million and counts 20 consultants. Prior to establishing the firm in 2004, Zentner, who holds a BA from the University of York and a MBA from Cranfield School of Management, worked for Edengene, Atos Consulting and KPMG Consulting. “Sia Partners is a game changing global management consultancy,” he said, pointing at the firm’s ‘Consulting 4.0 strategy’ launched earlier this year.

Sia Partners acquires British boutiques Inzenka and SKT Consulting

Founded in 2011, by former UBS banker and Accenture consultant Elliot Newsome, SKT Consulting concentrates on regulatory consulting for wealth management and corporate banking. The firm’s portfolio spans the full regulatory spectrum including Basel II, SM&CR, Sarbanes Oxley, IFRS 9 and MiFID II – its consultants have delivered more than 100 engagements for (global) financial institutions since inception. The management consultancy today generates revenues of £1.5 million and counts 10 consultants.

Ambition: a tier-1 consulting firm in the UK

As part of the integration, Zentner will join the Executive Team of Sia Partners UK, alongside Irene Molodtsov and Rory Colfer – the two founders of Molten. The trio together lead the firm’s operation of around £12 million in the country. “These two acquisitions reflect Sia Partners’ long-term commitment to become one of the tier-1 consulting firms in the UK,” commented Molodtsov and Colfer. According to a survey among 1,100 executives that have bought consultancy services in the past year, Deloitte Consulting, KPMG Advisory and McKinsey & Company are the leading management consulting brands in the UK, followed by many of the usual suspects, including the other Big Four firms, the two other MBB consultancies, as well as Accenture and A.T. Kearney.

Outside of the UK, Sia Partners has already muscled its way into the top-tier ranks of the consulting industry. A survey among consultants in Europe and Asia, conducted by US analyst firm Vault, placed Sia Partners among the top 20 consulting firms in Europe, while in Asia, the French-origin consultancy placed seventh amongst industry leaders.

The firm’s rapidly growing reputation comes on the back of a fast track expansion drive, lifted for a large part by a ‘buy-and-build’ strategy. In parallel with Inzenka and SKT Consulting, Sia Partners purchased a consulting firm in the Netherlands, Dicitas Consulting, taking its M&A total in the past twelve months to six deals. Companies that have been acquired in the past year are: digital marketing agency Fove in home market France, E3 in North America and ShiftIN Partners in the Middle East. Now, Sia Partners has over 1,200 consultants and staff across 20+ offices in over 15 countries.

Looking ahead, Courtecuisse said that further growth is anticipated. “Our Consulting 4.0 strategy marks the largest strategic shift since the company was founded in 1999. These latest acquisitions in the UK are in line with our strategy to accelerate our international expansion.”

Related: How Sia Partners is preparing for the future with its Consulting 4.0 strategy.


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SQW Group purchases property-based regeneration consultancy

19 April 2019

UK consulting firm SQW Group has completed its first acquisition since it completed a management buyout in January 2019. BBP Regeneration joins the company having collaborated with SQW for more than 20 years.

Established in 1983, SQW Group now operates all over the world. Comprising SQW, Oxford Innovation, Oxford Innovation Services – one of the UK’s leading innovation centre operators – and Oxford Investment Opportunities Network, the organisation’s origins can be traced to Britain’s two ancient university cities: Oxford, through Oxford Trust founders, Martin and Audrey Wood, and Cambridge, through SQW’s work in producing The Cambridge Phenomenon.

The consultancy specialises in public policy, working with entities from the public, private and voluntary sectors to research, develop, implement and evaluate social and economic development interventions. It now employs over 250 people across regional offices in London, Oxford and Edinburgh, and provides business support to over 4,000 entrepreneurs and small businesses each year. At the start of 2019, SQW secured its independence in a management buyout, advised on by M&A experts from Liberty Corporate Finance and Penningtons Manches.

SQW Group purchases property-based regeneration consultancy

SQW has strengthened its position as a provider of services across the business spectrum with the acquisition of BBP Regeneration. Founded in 1994, the consulting firm specialises in land and property-based regeneration and growth schemes, and is a leading social and economic development consultancy. 

The two firms first worked together over 20 years ago, when SQW and BBP collaborated to develop the first Regional Economic Strategy for the South East. More recently, they developed an economic strategy for Thanet and are now working together in locations stretching from Cwmbran via Oxfordshire to London.

With the addition of BBP, SQW can now provide an integrated advisory service for organisations developing property schemes which deliver economic benefit to their local area. By joining SQW, meanwhile, BBP hopes to further enhance its ability to support clients in delivering property and place-making ambitions. 

Speaking about the deal, SQW CEO David Crichton-Miller commented, “The UK more than ever needs solutions to the challenges of places – of high streets under threat, of meeting housing delivery targets, and of both economically over-successful and economically challenged towns and cities – and the combination of SQW and BBP is uniquely suited to developing those solutions. [This deal] brings together critical and complementary services relating to places to serve our clients with leading edge and practical advice.”

Andy Smith, Director of BBP Regeneration, added, “SQW shares with BBP the same values of seeking to provide outstanding, practical, real world advice that helps get buildings built and places developed.  We greatly look forward to the opportunities that come from joining our two organisations together.”