Accenture buys Javelin Group, adds 160 retail advisors

19 May 2015

Accenture has acquired retail management consultancy Javelin Group. Approximately 160 professionals across offices in the UK and France will transfer to Accenture and be integrated into the firm’s Strategy business unit.

The retail industry is globally facing drastic change, ranging from intensifying competition and globalisation to new technologies that are disrupting strategies and value chains. As a result, retailers are massively reviewing their business models, and initiating large scale (digital) transformations to bring their operations back in line with the new reality. Recent research from Kurt Salmon for example shows that, in the UK, only 5% of retailers are truly omni-channel proof, implying that a massive 95% of the market still faces the challenge of transitioning to a better end-state.

Javelin Group - Strategic Retail Transformation

With change dominating the management agenda, demand for support from external experts, such as management consultants, is booming in the retail consulting sector. Currently valued at $9 billion globally, 10% of the global market, demand for advisory and implementation services is forecasted to grow by 12% this year, roughly double the rate of the second-best performing sectors (TMT, Healthcare and Financial Services). To capitalise on the growing revenue potential, consultancies are in an increasing rate organically beefing up their retail practices, as well as eyeing acquisition targets to accelerate the momentum.

In Accenture ‘s case, the pickup of Javelin Group represent an arguably giant-leap in bolstering its European retail offerings, not just in size, but more so in terms of high-end consulting capabilities such as strategy and management consultancy. Founded in 1997 in the UK, the firm has grown to a team of 160 retail consulting professionals, offering a wide breadth of retail strategy consulting and implementation services, including market assessments, performance improvement, omni-channel retail planning, retail analytics, supply chain fulfilment and operations, as well as technology consulting and systems implementation and support services. Javelin Group has offices in London (UK), Paris (France), and development centres in Sofia and Plovdiv (Bulgaria).

Accenture Strategy

With the move, Accenture significantly expand its capabilities in the retail arena, with a key focus on the UK and France markets, although knock-on effects are expected to be passed on to other pan-European Accenture countries. “The acquisition of Javelin Group will help Accenture Strategy reinforce our ability to deliver large scale transformation in the retail industry,” comments Mark Knickrehm, head of Accenture Strategy. "It will also strengthen the portfolio of industry knowledge and digital capabilities.” Chris Donnelly, Retail Industry Strategy lead at Accenture Strategy, adds: “Accenture anticipates continued strong demand for strategy services in the retail market as new technologies raise consumer expectations and transform the fulfilment of products and services across multiple channels.”

Tony Stockil, CEO of Javelin Group, says the firm will benefit from “Accenture’s global reach and digital transformation capabilities”, adding that the joining of forces will at the end of the line “bring new value to those businesses.”

Mark Knickrehm | Chris Donnelly | Tony Stockil | Richard Wolff

Earlier this year Accenture purchased Gaspo, a Brazil-based supply chain services and solutions provider. Transactions completed last year include Reactive Media (focus on digital), Hytracc Consulting (focus on oil & gas) and analytics software platform i4C Analytics. 

* Javelin Group was founded by Tony Stockil, CEO, and Richard Wolff, COO.



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.”