Heidrick & Struggles buys London based Co Company

16 October 2015 Consultancy.uk

Global executive search firm Heidrick & Struggles has acquired Co Company, a London-based advisory boutique that specialises in organisational performance services. As part of the integration, four senior Co Company advisors will join Heidrick & Struggles in the role of Partner, with Co Company Chairman Colin Price named the global lead of Heidrick & Struggles' Leadership Consulting practice.

With over 1,500 employees in 50+ locations globally, Heidrick & Struggles is one of the larger recruitment firms of the globe. The company, founded in 1953 by Gardner Heidrick and John Struggles, both alumni of Booz Allen Hamilton, supports clients with traditional recruitment services (headhunting, executive search), and to a lesser extent also with leadership consulting.

To boost its consultancy service portfolio in Europe, Heidrick & Struggles has purchased Co Company, a London-based firm that supports companies with leadership matters and human capital transformations. Co Company is led by Colin Price, a veteran in the consulting industry, and author of the book ‘Beyond Performance: How Great Organizations Build Ultimate Competitive Advantage’. Prior to joining the firm in the summer of 2014, he served as a Director at McKinsey & Company (15 years) and had a 14-year stint with Big Four giant PwC, in his last role as a Partner. At both consultancies he spent the majority of his time advising clients on organisational performance including team dynamics, performance management, leadership assessment, development and transformation.

Heidrick & Struggles

Co Company’s senior team also includes Cathy Powell, an experienced advisor with expertise in organisational behaviour and change management, TA Mitchell, who co-founded Co Company in 2007 and is an expert in programme- and change management, and Sharon Toye, a former Accenture consultant with expertise in the development of leaders.

According to Tracy Wolstencroft, President and CEO of Heidrick & Struggles, the acquisition marks an important step in the further development of the firm’s leadership advisory services. “The addition of Co Company provides a premium leadership and organisational development capability with tools that can scale globally. It will enhance our ability to work with senior executives around the world to accelerate individual, team and business performance." 

As part of the deal, Co Company will be integrated into Heidrick & Struggles' Leadership Consulting practice, with Powell, Mitchell and Toye joining the business as Partners. Price has been given the task to lead the practice globally, and in his role as Executive Vice President he will also serve as a member of the firm's Management Committee. “With a brand that garners respect from transformational leaders, Heidrick & Struggles has a global platform that will position us to work with C-Suite executives at many of the world's top companies to help them accelerate leader, team and organizational performance,” notes Price. 

Colin Price - Sharon Toye - Cathy Powell and TA Mitchell

Wolstencroft adds: “Colin has developed a strategic advisory firm combining data analytics with insightful, professional judgment to help teams succeed in unpredictable and rapidly changing operating environments," said. "The team will further develop and deploy this model at Heidrick & Struggles, leading the expansion of our Leadership Consulting services globally with a relentless client focus."

Recruitment meets consulting
The deal between Heidrick & Struggles and Co Company follows a growing trend towards convergence between traditional recruitment and human capital consulting. With clients increasingly demanding end-to-end human capital services, on the back of deep analytical rigour and forward-looking insights, the space between the two fields is merging. In recent years a number of large acquisitions have unfolded in the space, with the Korn Ferry and Hay Group merger agreed last month ($452 million deal) the latest example.

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SQW Group purchases property-based regeneration consultancy

19 April 2019 Consultancy.uk

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.”