Next 15 acquires the UK business of Engine Group

04 March 2022 2 min. read
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Business consultancy Next 15 has reached an agreement to acquire Engine UK, for an enterprise value of more than £77 million. Next 15 CEO Tim Dyson said the move will help the firm “execute our growth plan built on our model of independence, incentives and investment.”

A division of Engine Group Holdings, Engine UK has around 600 staff from a wide range of disciplines including creatives, brand expert, product and UX designers, editors, consultants, data scientists and technologists, healthcare specialists and communications experts. The firm operates across three core pillars: communications, creative and transformation work, with each specialism operating with its own management teams.

Each of the three pillars represents around one-third of Engine UK’s revenues, with the largest being the creative line. It accounts for 34% of Engine UK’s income, working with blue-chip clients including Cazoo, E.ON and Santander to provide digital brand experiences, integrated online and offline advertising and influencer marketing. Meanwhile, both representing 33% of revenues: the communications division delivers full-service strategic communications consulting to clients like AstraZeneca, and Coinbase; and the transformation wing primarily serves Britain’s public sector, delivering strategy, data and technology to client such as the Home Office, and the Department for Education.

Next 15 acquires the UK business of Engine Group

With such a wide-ranging client-base, and the demand for digital transformation, communications and creative consulting all spiking ahead of a post-pandemic recovery, Engine UK attracted the attentions of Next 15. The management consultancy has agreed to acquire Engine UK, at an enterprise value of £77.5 million, with £61.7 million paid on completion in cash.

The move is aimed at accelerating Next 15’s business transformation ambitions, in particular, adding significant scale and bringing new capabilities in the public sector, as well as an experienced management team.

Next 15’s Dyson added, “Acquiring this broad-based digital transformation, communications and creative business fits well with our track record and strategy of adding growth businesses which then contribute to our target of doubling the size of our business in the next three to five years. Its three businesses are home to great talent and strong client relationships and provide multiple opportunities to expand and further apply our growth consultancy services.”

Headquartered in New York, Next 15 employs over 2,000 people across 42 offices in 15 countries, incorporating 22 subsidiary agencies spanning digital content, marketing, PR, consumer, technology, marketing software, market research, public affairs and policy communications. The purchase of Engine UK also brings significant strategic communication capabilities, and brand strategy offerings, to the firm’s London office – enabling Next 15 to scale its UK wing to match its offerings in its native US market.