April 2017: Consulting M&A Update

By Ramone Param, Associate Director, Market Intelligence & Buyer Coverage, Equiteq.

SNC-Lavalin acquires Atkins

SNC-Lavalin is acquiring British engineering consultancy Atkins for £2.1bn ($2.6bn). The offer represented a c.35% premium to the undisturbed closing price of Atkins prior to acquisitions talks were announced. As highlighted in our January market update, CH2M had been rumored to be in discussions with Atkins about a possible merger earlier in the year.

The acquisition would boost the Canadian engineering and construction firm’s European revenue as it emerges from a self-imposed freeze on acquisitions in 2015. The deal is expected to expand SNC’s projects outside the energy industry, while oil prices continue to remain significantly below their 2014 levels.

In combination with John Wood Group’s acquisition of Amec for £2.2bn ($2.7bn) last month, the deal represents a consolidation of the UK engineering consulting market, a trend that we anticipated globally in our latest Engineering M&A Report.

CapGemini to acquire North American business of Ciber

CapGemini will acquire the operations of Ciber Inc. in North America for $50m. The transaction will be implemented through a sale of Ciber’s assets under Chapter 11 bankruptcy protections. The assets to be acquired include the majority of the North American business of Ciber generating revenue of c.$275m. These assets would become part of Capgemini’s Technology and Engineering Services business unit in the region.

Ciber experienced years of decline in its European market, which impacted its finances according to court papers. The deal with CapGemini follows a number of recent deals by the buyer in the U.S., which further strengthens the French technology firm’s presence in the region, as well as its relationships with blue-chip clients in sectors like automotive, telecoms and media. The deal is estimated to increase Capgemini’s workforce by 2,000 consultants in the U.S. and 1,000 in India.

The deal is expected to close by the end of Q2 2017.

Infor acquires Birst to strengthen its Business Intelligence capabilities

A notable deal for many services partners operating within the ERP and BI space was Infor’s acquisition of Birst for a rumored price tag of $100m. Infor specializes in accounting, finance, and manufacturing management software and is backed by Koch Industries. Birst’s business intelligence capabilities are considered to be complementary to Infor’s ERP portfolio. Furthermore, Birst works with various blue-chip clients like Kellogg’s, Citrix and Schneider Electric, which will better position Infor to compete against the likes of Oracle.

Equiteq advises DBM Consultants on their acquisition of customer experience specialist, NumberOneInsight

DBM Consultants is a leading independent market research agency in Australia. Blue-chip Australian companies, particularly in the financial services sector, use DBM’s insights to make better-informed business decisions. NumberOneInsight is a customer experience consultancy providing qualitative and quantitative evaluation and experience insights.

The merged team will be based at DBM’s Sydney office, strengthening the group’s presence across ANZ. The integration of these two complementary agencies adds fuel to a long-established DBM goal of transformation. The strategy of recent years has been to leverage strong client relationships and move towards a more digitized offering and scalable growth.

Selected Consulting M&A Deals in April: 

Note 1: Based on revenue estimates for sold assets.
Note 2: Based on 2016 LFY Revenue.

Important Notice: This article has been compiled using our daily activities in the industry that provide us with unique market intelligence, along with various third party information sources. In many cases, valuation metrics and other deal data has not been confirmed.

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