Forensics expert joins AlixPartners as Managing Director in London

27 November 2018 Consultancy.uk

International consultancy AlixPartners has appointed a new expert to its Investigations, Disputes & Risk practice in London. Gavin Williamson arrives from rival BDO to take up the role of Managing Director.

With fraud in the UK at an alarming high, the Serious Fraud Office completed some 30 raids on suspects in the last year, more than the past three years in total. With such crime on the rise in the UK, financial forensics has become an increasingly vital aspect of British auditing.

Financial forensics is a field which combines criminal investigation skills with financial auditing, in order to identify criminal financial activity coming from within or outside of an organisation. The heightened demand for these services has seen a number of large professional services firms bolster their forensic practices over the past year, particularly in the global financial hub of London.

Forensics expert joins AlixPartners as Managing Director

As AlixPartners similarly moves to better position itself to support the needs of clients, the global consulting firm has appointed corporate and financial investigations specialist Gavin Williamson as a Managing Director in its Investigations, Disputes & Risk practice. Specialising in complex, multi-jurisdictional fraud and corruption investigations, Williamson brings 19 years of experience in forensic accounting, asset-tracing and corporate governance to AlixPartners’ London office.

Before arriving at AlixPartners, Williamson was most recently a Partner in BDO UK’s forensic practice where he was responsible for the investigations service offering, delivering corporate investigations in the UK and internationally. Prior to this, he also spent time as a Director in the investigations leadership team of Big Four firm Deloitte’s Forensic wing. He holds a PhD in Civil Engineering from the University of Dundee, and is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales, and is a member of the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners.

Commenting on the appointment, Simon Freakley, CEO of AlixPartners said, “We are pleased to welcome Gavin to our team at AlixPartners. Gavin brings exceptional leadership and experience to our growing investigations and compliance services team, and his expertise in solving complex international cases will be of great value to our clients.”

Related: Top 10 consulting firms for fraud, forensic and investigation services (on Consultancy.org).

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Accenture's Rothco installs new Executive Creative Director

24 April 2019 Consultancy.uk

Jen Speirs is set to take over from Alan Kelly as the Executive Creative Director of Accenture Interactive-owned agency Rothco. Speirs arrives as Kelly takes up the role of Chief Creative Officer at the firm.

Rothco is a full-service creative agency based in Dublin. Founded in 1995, the firm contains more than 150 strategic, creative, technology, design, project management and production professionals located in Ireland’s capital city. The agency strategically plans, designs and produces powerful communications campaigns across Europe for numerous iconic brands, including Tesco, Heineken and Lyons. Internationally recognised for its prowess in the sector, Rothco notably found success at the Cannes Lions awards in both 2015 and 2016.

Such success inevitably drew the eye of Accenture during its extended spending spree to strengthen its digital design and advertising offerings, housed under the Accenture Interactive moniker. A year after purchasing Rothco, Accenture Interactive has since continued this push into the advertising space, acquiring New York and London-based agency Droga5 earlier this month, and adding illustrious clients such as HBO, Amazon and The New York Times to its roster of clients. Despite its purchase, Rothco has also been undergoing its own period of change, however.

With the news that long-term incumbent Alan Kelly had won a promotion from his position as Executive Creative Director (ECD), the agency commenced a hunt for his replacement. Kelly joined Rothco nine years ago as a Copywriter, and has now worked his way up to the role of Chief Creative Officer. Assuming that office, he will pass on his previous role to Jen Speirs, who exits BMF Australia, relocating half way around the world to fill the vacancy.

Accenture's Rothco installs new Executive Creative Director

Speirs was appointed BMF’s Deputy Executive Creative Director in March 2018, having joined BMF as a creative director in 2016 from her previous role at Foxtel, where she was a Freelance Creative Director. Following her arrival at BMF, she worked across brands such as McDonald’s, Carefree, Arnott’s, Berlei, TAL, Bonds, BWS, UN Women and the Workplace Gender Equality Agency, while her work has picked up awards at NY Festivals, Clio, AWARD, Cannes, Effies, Media Federation, Caples, and Spikes Asia. Speirs also worked at DDB Sydney as Creative Director for six years, with clients such as Telstra, Lipton and Johnson & Johnson.

Commenting on her new challenge, Speirs said, "When I look at a lot of Rothco's work, like JFK Unsilenced, the #takenotice breast cancer campaign on the Molly Malone Statue, Sleeping Flags – it all has that perfect combination of creativity, innovation and craft… So the opportunity to go and be a part of that, and work with the awesome people I’ve met so far, was far too good to say no to. I can’t wait to get over there and get stuck in.”

Remarking on Speirs’ arrival, Kelly added, "I am chuffed we have poached someone as incredibly talented as Jen Speirs. I think it’s a testament to the work we are doing in Rothco that we are attracting world-class talent like Jen to these shores. Jen is a super addition to the team as she is both gifted and decent, two qualities we always look for when we hire. I also may have told her that Dublin's weather is pretty much the same as Sydney's – hopefully, she hasn't fact-checked this yet."

Related: Accenture's push into the creative sector is an identity crisis.