Elixirr accelerates out of the pandemic with strong growth

07 October 2021 Consultancy.uk 4 min. read
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Over the last six months of 2021, Elixirr’s team has worked hard to deliver lasting change to its global clients, helping them harness innovation and technology to come out ahead of the curve in the post-pandemic recovery. This drive has contributed to a strong set of interim results for the firm, which suggest that annual revenue could hit £50 million by the end of the year.

Launched in 2009, Elixirr has since worked with clients across Europe, North America, Africa, Asia and Australia. Over the last decade, the company has rapidly diversified its client base by industry and geography, with a focus on forging long-term relationships with clients. In 2020, this saw the firm float its shares on the AIM market of the London Stock Exchange – something that helped lay the foundations for its current stellar growth.

Elixirr Founder and CEO Stephen Newton explained, “The IPO was initially teeing up a growth strategy that was two-fold: organic and inorganic. We are being fastidious in making sure that the foundation stones that we put in place for organic growth are maximised and capitalised on."

After engaging 42 new clients in the first half of 2021 via organic clients, it’s clear this strategy was a success for the firm. Newton went on, “We coupled that with inorganic growth so these two things are very complementary, and this is why we are seeing such great acceleration in our business.”

Over the first six months of the financial year, Elixirr has seen revenue totalling £24 million, while enjoying record revenue in five of the six months in that period. That represents a 77% increase on the revenue Elixirr brought in over the same period of 2020 – which was itself an 18% increase on 2019 levels. Illustrating Newton’s point about Elixirr’s hybrid growth strategy, 45% of its growth was organic, while acquisitions helped super-charge the rest. At the end of 2020, Elixirr added digital marketing firm Coast Digital to its group to its House of Brands, while in April 2021 it acquired transformation and procurement consultancy Retearn, and the two purchases added 32% to the group’s interim growth.

Another key driver for Elixirr’s success has been its booming hub on the other side of the Atlantic. On top of two new UK partners, Elixirr has added four new partners to its US wing this year. This has enabled the firm to enjoy a “particularly wonderful first half of the year,” according to Newton, who flagged up the fact that operations grew more than 100% in the first half of 2021.

Newton expanded, “The US is a market which is very open to disruptors, very open to entrepreneurial thinking, and is crying out for more creative consultancies. This is why our model is working so well there.”

Upgraded expectations

Not only does this show that Elixirr has successfully turned the challenges of the last two years into major opportunities, it also bodes well for the coming six months. With a strong pipeline of demand for the remainder of the year, Elixirr’s financial expectations have been upgraded for the second time in the 2021 financial year. The estimate now sits at between £47 million and £50 million in revenue, with an Adjusted EBITDA margin in the 30-32% range.

“It’s great when we do fantastic revenue,” Newton went on, “but it’s even better when we do great EBITDA, and I can say that’s what we’ve done this time. Consistent with last year, we’ve done a 33.8% margin, which translates to an £8.1 million number, which is 78% up on the same period last year.”

Looking ahead, Elixirr is determined to both achieve and exceed these projections, to truly disrupt the industry and its incumbents. While Newton confirmed that clients are already stating “our performance is second to none,” a long-term vision he has held since the launch of Elixirr still depends on maintaining its financial momentum.

He concluded, “My ambition for this company in a nut-shell is to build the best consulting firm in the world, and to do that I want us to be able to scale so we can legitimately claim that position. So I want us to be a billion-dollar organisation in market capitalisation – a services unicorn – and for the world’s best strategy consultancies to turn around and say, ‘Where the hell did they come from?’ Take them by surprise.”