Consulting Sector M&A Deals for week beginning 9th March

businessman doing handstand on the beachHamptons International (USA) acquired ikon Consultancy Limited (UK)
Deal Size: Unspecified Industry: Business consulting Date: March 2015
Countrywide firm Hamptons International has acquired a consultancy that specialises in affordable housing and regeneration. The purchase of ikon, based in London, is for an undisclosed sum. Hamptons said that the acquisition forms part of Hamptons International’s strategic ambition to grow and strengthen its professional services offering, particularly in the public and affordable housing sectors. Ikon’s client list includes housing associations and local councils, and major projects include Greenwich Peninsula and residential development in the Olympic Park. Alyn North, chief finance and operating officer at Hamptons International and Countrywide, said: “We are hugely excited to be making such a key strategic acquisition and particularly one which is so complementary to our current development services offering. “We have been working with the team at ikon for a number of years with blue chip clients across all sectors of the property industry and this is a natural extension of what to date has been a tremendously successful association.” ikon Consultancy Limited provides consultancy services to residential and mixed-use properties for private, public, and housing association clients. The company offers housing and regeneration advice services. It also provides development, finance, and project delivery services.

National Financial Partners Corp. (USA) acquired Mackenzie Taylor Benefits Consultants Ltd (UK)
Deal Size: Unspecified Industry: HR consulting Date: March 2015
NFP, a leading insurance broker and consultant that provides employee benefits, property & casualty, retirement, and individual insurance and wealth management solutions, expanded the global presence of its Insurance Brokerage and Consulting segment with the acquisition of Mackenzie Taylor Benefits Consultants, Ltd. (MTBC). MTBC is a United Kingdom-based international consulting firm that provides global benefits management services to multinational employers and their local and expatriate employees. With a growing reach that extends over 30 countries, MTBC offers expertise in pensions, health care plans, voluntary benefits and risk benefits. The firm was founded in 2008 by Kishan Herriotts and Anna Feeney, both of whom will continue to lead operations from Birmingham, UK. Douglas W. Hammond, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of NFP, commented, “NFP is committed to providing international consulting services and high-quality products that meet the diverse needs of a rapidly expanding community of global citizens. The addition of MTBC allows us to strengthen the solutions we provide to multinational employers, particularly those that are opening overseas operations or making overseas acquisitions. We’re pleased to welcome them to the family.” Mackenzie Taylor Benefits Consultants Ltd. provides consulting services for employee benefits programs to corporations in the United Kingdom and internationally. National Financial Partners Corp., together with its subsidiaries, provides advisory and brokerage services to corporate and high net worth individual clients in the United States and Canada.

Opportune, LLP (USA) acquired Ralph E. Davis Associates LP (USA)
Deal Size: Unspecified Industry: Energy consulting Date: March 2015
Opportune LLP announced that it has acquired Ralph E. Davis Associates, LP, one of the industry’s more respected independent petroleum engineering firms. Established in 1924, Ralph E. Davis performs petroleum engineering and geological studies (both domestic and international), independently certifies reserve reports, provides acquisition/divestiture support, and prepares technical financial analyses for use in litigation and regulatory hearings. “Ralph E. Davis Associates, LP has stood for excellence in petroleum engineering for over 90 years,” stated David Baggett, Managing Partner of Opportune LLP. Mr. Baggett added, “We are excited to offer this new set of capabilities to our client base. Now Opportune, through Ralph E. Davis, can prepare independent reserve certifications and perform engineering and geological studies for field development, transaction due diligence, valuation or dispute resolution.” Allen Barron, President of Ralph E. Davis Associates, LP, said: “Our client-centric focus meshes well with Opportune, […] Our combination will provide us increased capabilities to assist our collective clients and more opportunities for our employees.” Ralph E. Davis Associates L.P. provides consulting services for the oil and gas industry. Opportune LLP operates as a consultancy that focuses on the energy industry. The company offers services in the areas of corporate finance, complex financial reporting, process and technology, strategy and organisation, dispute resolution, enterprise risk, tax, and outsourcing.

Lee Hecht Harrison, LLC (USA) to acquire Knightsbridge Human Capital Management Inc. (Canada)
Deal Size: Unspecified Industry: HR consulting Date: March 2015
Adecco Group has announced the acquisition of Knightsbridge Human Capital Solutions for an enterprise value of CAD 80 million. Knightsbridge is the market leader in Canada in career transition, talent and leadership development and recruitment services, with revenues of CAD 56 million in 2014 from these activities. Knightsbridge will be combined with Adecco subsidiary Lee Hecht Harrison, the global leader in career transition and talent mobility. “Knightsbridge joining forces with Lee Hecht Harrison will significantly benefit the clients of both organisations in Canada and around the world,” said Peter Alcide, President of Lee Hecht Harrison. “Companies today seek to partner with organisations that can globally deliver world-class talent development and career transition services seamlessly and consistently. The combined organisation in Canada will be co-branded and will enhance the market-leading services we offer companies to ensure they are best optimising their talent.” The combination of Lee Hecht Harrison and Knightsbridge establishes Lee Hecht Harrison as the market leader for Human Capital Solutions in Canada and reinforces Lee Hecht Harrison’s leadership position in key markets around the world. The acquisition also deepens the breadth of services available to both Knightsbridge and Lee Hecht Harrison clients globally.

Alchemy Systems, LP (USA) acquired Chilton Consulting, Inc. (USA)
Deal Size: Unspecified Industry: Business consulting Date: March 2015
Alchemy Systems, the global leader in food and workplace safety for the food industry, has acquired Chilton Consulting Group. Chilton is an industry-recognized consulting firm that helps food companies navigate complex food safety standards, improve regulatory readiness, and drive frontline employee performance. “The food industry faces tremendous operational, consumer, and regulatory pressures,” said Alchemy CEO Jeff Eastman. “Chilton’s deep capabilities in frontline safety and operations will enable us to make the food industry safer and more productive, from farm to fork.” Chilton will expand Alchemy’s service offerings for the Global Food Safety Initiative. In addition, the company plans to expand the implementation of its Total Operational Performance System (TOPS) to help clients optimise line performance and profitability. Chilton Consulting Group is Alchemy’s second acquisition in the past 18 months. “Smart food companies are recognising that better engagement with their frontline workers is an untapped opportunity to improve bottom line performance,” says Eastman. “We continue to build our capabilities through continued investments in innovation and acquisitions to serve the needs of the food industry.” Chilton Consulting, Inc. provides consultancy services for the development, verification, and implementation of food quality and process control systems. Alchemy Systems, LP provides a web-based training, coaching, and communication platform focusing on workplace injuries and food safety for the food industry.

Verisk Analytics, Inc. (USA) to acquire Wood Mackenzie Ltd (UK)
Deal Size: $2.8 billion Industry: Business consulting Date: March 2015
Founded in 1974 and currently owned by private equity firm Hellman & Friedman, Wood Mackenzie provides insights, data and analysis for the energy, chemicals, metals and mining industries, including analysis and advice on assets, companies and markets. The company uses predictive models and proprietary data to describe and value assets, forecast their future productivity and value, and provide clients with strategic advice. Operating from offices in Edinburgh, Dubai, Houston, London, Singapore and Sydney, the firm has about 1,000 employees worldwide, and for the year ended December 31st 2014 had revenue of £227m and EBITDA of £107m. Verisk says the acquisition will place it at the centre of the global energy market, while supporting its plans to expand internationally. As part of the deal, which is expected to close during the second quarter of 2015, Wood Mackenzie’s CEO Stephen Halliday will continue to lead the business, reporting to Verisk President and CEO Scott Stephenson. According to BBC Scotland, more than 200 Wood Mackenzie staff, who are company shareholders, will receive a £500k average pay out when the deal is concluded. Halliday comments: ‘This combination is a natural home for the business we’ve built over the years and a great opportunity for our customers and employees. Our teams stand ready to build on the strength of our existing solutions with the benefit of Verisk’s analytic expertise, customer relationships, and financial resources.’ Wood Mackenzie Ltd. provides research and consulting services. It provides objective analysis and advice on assets, companies, and markets. The company offers various research and consulting services in the areas of business environment, business improvement, business strategy, and transaction support. Verisk Analytics, Inc. provides information about risk to professionals in insurance, healthcare, financial services, government, supply chain, and risk management in the United States and internationally.

Element Materials Technology Holding UK Ltd (UK) to acquire TRaC Global Limited (UK)
Deal Size: $66.3 million Industry: Engineering consulting Date: March 2015
Element Materials Technology has announced that it has entered into a binding share purchase agreement with Bioquell PLC to purchase TRaC Global Ltd (TRaC). This is Element’s second major acquisition in the first quarter of 2015, having acquired Minneapolis-based Environ Laboratories in January. This acquisition significantly expands Element’s range of capabilities and capacities in the Aerospace sector, particularly within Europe, while contributing to Element’s global business strategy to become the recognised market leader for materials and product qualification testing services. TRaC has been active in the testing sector for more than 65 years and today employs 200 engineers, technicians and testing specialists at its six laboratories across the UK as well as in facilities in the US and China. The acquisition of TRaC builds on Element’s existing capabilities through the addition in Europe of an extensive range of product qualification testing services, including WMC (Electromagnetic Compatibility), Vibration and Environmental Simulation, Safety, Radio, Telecoms, Explosive Atmosphere Testing (ATEX), Finite Element Analysis (FEA) and Early Stage Qualification (ESQ). Charles Noall, President and CEO of Element, says: “We are delighted to have signed a binding agreement to add TRaC to the Element platform. This acquisition will significantly strengthen our presence in the European Aerospace
market and complement our current product qualification testing capabilities in Berlin, Germany, as well as in Jupiter, FL, Seattle WA, and Minneapolis, MN. In acquiring TRaC our headcount will increase to 1,800 and the number of Element laboratories to a total of 51, ensuring that we are well positioned to achieve our goal of becoming the world’s most trusted testing partner to the Aerospace primes and their supply chains.” TRaC Global Limited, a testing and certification company, provides product testing, regulatory, compliance, consulting, and certification services to rail, medical devices, marine, energy, electrical and electronics, defense, automotive, and aerospace sectors worldwide. Element Materials Technology Holding UK Ltd, through its subsidiary, owns and operates a network of laboratories that provide materials testing, product qualification testing, and failure analysis and consulting services.

Crosslin & Associates (USA) acquired Hickman & Associates, CPAs, P.C. (USA)
Deal Size: Unspecified Industry: Financial consulting Date: March 2015
Nashville accounting firm Crosslin & Associates has bought Hickman & Associates. The acquisition of the Nashville accounting and consulting firm will expand Crosslin & Associates’ tax and accounting services, the firm said in a news release. “In looking toward the future, Crosslin & Associates was ready to expand its base of tax and accounting services,” J. Dell Crosslin, the firm’s managing principal, said. “By acquiring Hickman & Associates, we will be able to add services and expertise while continuing to embody the same commitment to excellence and high quality service that both companies have delivered since inception.” Hickman & Associates provides accounting, tax planning and preparation, financial planning, bookkeeping services.

Publicis Groupe SA (France) acquired Expicient Inc. (USA)
Deal Size: Unspecified Industry: Marketing consulting Date: March 2015
Publicis Groupe has acquired Expicient Inc., a leading global omni-channel services firm with significant expertise in inventory and order management systems (OMS), a capability that clients increasingly need to manage inventory, pricing and offers across channels for today’s connected consumer who moves fluidly across digital and physical stores. Expicient will be integrated into the Publicis.Sapient platform under the Rosetta brand. “Today’s always-on consumer makes no distinction between devices and channels,” said Publicis.Sapient CEO Alan Herrick “as a result our retail clients are increasingly looking for us to build systems — inventory, supply chain, omni-channel commerce that enable the experience a 2015 consumer demands. Expicient joining Publicis.Sapient allows us to significantly strengthen our clients ability to integrate offer information, order information, inventory information and pricing information across channels, which is a significant change from a world where the on-line stores and physical stores operated separately.” Expicient Inc. develops and deploys omni-channel software products and solutions, and order management systems. Publicis Groupe SA provides a range of advertising and communications services worldwide. Darpan Seth, CEO and founder of Expicient, said: “The opportunity ahead of us, to create differentiated customer experiences is tremendous. We are living in an unprecedented time of connected consumers and commerce. For Expicient, combining forces with Publicis.Sapient will allow our teams to deliver a full range of marketing and commerce solutions while significantly expanding our global reach,” Publicis Groupe SA provides a range of advertising and communications services worldwide. Expicient Inc. develops and deploys omni-channel software products and solutions, and order management systems.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s