Australian consulting firm Projects Assured acquired by DWS

22 July 2018

DWS has acquired the strategy, management and IT consulting firm Project Assured for $43 million in a deal that asks for $30 million up front, paid for by a mixture of cash reserves and debt. The acquired consulting firm has a predicted annual revenue for the 2018-19 financial year of between $35-40 million.

Project Assured is a Canberra based consulting firm which has grown since their inception a few short years ago to have over 100 employees today. Having begun their operations less than three years ago, the firm has ridden a wave of public sector advisory expenditure to become one of the capital’s fastest growing advisories. 

The purchaser, DWS, was formed in 1991 by chairman and founder Danny Wallis and has an annual revenue that exceeds $140 million. The firm listed on the Australian Stock Exchange in 2006 and has since been on a path of inorganic growth, acquiring a number of separate businesses within the country. With the Project Assured staff incorporated into the DWS ranks, roughly 800 professionals will work with the consulting firm.

Australian consulting firm Projects Assured acquired by DWS

Project Assured co-founders, Greg Sly, an ex-managing director of strategic advisory and consulting firm CTO Group, and David O’Rourke, who has held multiple senior positions in the public and private sectors as well as in the Australian Army, commented by saying; "DWS shares our vision for the future of the Projects Assured business and we are delighted to be part of a leading ASX listed Australian IT services group.” The two Project Assured co-founders and joint executive general managers will stay with the company throughout the transition period.

The transaction will be completed on the 2nd of July, the same date that the initial $30 million bill will be paid. The following $13 million will be based on performance indicators and settled in the forthcoming years. The sum is roughly 5 to 6 times the annual EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortisation) which is lower than the average managed service providers (MSP) but common for many consulting and project management firms. 

“It is also consistent with our stated aim of making earnings accretive acquisitions to supplement the wide-ranging suite of IT and strategic consulting services already provided by the Group,” said DWS CEO Danny Wallis. “We are pleased to welcome Projects Assured’s experienced and highly skilled workforce into the DWS Group and look forward to supporting David, Greg and the Projects Assured leadership team in the next stage of Projects Assured growth”.

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Deloitte bolsters digital capabilities with The Terrace Initiative

19 April 2019

Global professional service firm Deloitte has bolstered its capabilities in the cloud computing domain through the acquisition of management consultancy The Terrace Initiative, which is based in Perth. The acquisition gives Deloitte access to Alchymy, which is a insight-driven digital portal. 

The Terrace Initiative was established in 2013 as a management consultancy, offering a wide range of services including organisational change management, project management, risk management and business analysis. The firm is based in Perth, with an additional office in Sydney.

The firm offers support with digital transformation and is adept at dealing with services in the Industry 4.0 domain, making it an enticing prospect for Big Four accounting and advisory firm Deloitte. Specifically, Deloitte is aiming to acquire capabilities in Alchymy, which is an insight-enabled change management platform.

Alchymy was devised to cope with the high-speed environment that is characteristic of the contemporary business environment. The firm is hosted in the digital domain, and delivers data-driven insights that are computed in real time on a singular dashboard for organisations.

Deloitte bolsters digital capabilities with The Terrace Initiative

Leaders have an overview of the progress being made in different areas of their organisation, with simultaneous identification of any barriers being faced in any domain. Alchymyst offers visual representation, which enables the quick deciphering of progress and issues, allowing for speedy action. 

The platform will significantly enhance Deloitte’s capabilities. Conditions of the transaction dictate that the joint CEOs at The Terrace Initiative – Melissa Bell and Corrie Scheepers – will join Deloitte at a Partner level, and will lead a new change management division. All roughly 50 The Terrace Initiative employees will also join the big four accounting and consulting giant.

The acquisition comes amid a period of expansion for Deloitte Australia. Since the start of this year, the firm has made a foray into the New Zealand market with its digital vertical, in addition to the acquisition of risk consultancy Converging Data Australia.

Managing Partner of Consulting at Deloitte, Kaylene O’Brien, said of the acquisition, “The digital age is driving organisational change at an unprecedented rate. Managing the human aspects of these changes is incredibly complex and generates large amounts of data that has traditionally been hard to capture and interpret.”

David Brown, Leader of Human Capital at Deloitte added, “The world of work is rapidly changing. The future of work, workers and the workplace are all being disrupted by technology, in a myriad of ways. Successful change initiatives and inspired cultures rely on agile, flexible and innovative leaders, and the effective use of data will become increasingly important.”