FTS Group buys specialist defence consultancy Mentum Systems

18 August 2021 Consultancy.com.au 2 min. read
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Continuing its string of acquisitions in recent years, Australian privately-owned professional services player FTS Group has purchased Mentum Systems.

The acquisition of Canberra-based defence and national security consulting firm Mentum Systems was made from New Zealand IT provider Optimation Group for an undisclosed sum, and bolsters the group’s IT advisory capabilities in the sector.

“Mentum Systems presents synergies with some of our existing business units and combined we now have an unprecedented level of capability,” said FTS Group CEO Stephen Kowal. “This acquisition allows us to accelerate growth in one of our key customer sectors and strengthens our position as a leading Australian advisory technologist, with deep specialisation in our business units.”

FTS Group buys specialist defence consultancy Mentum Systems

Adopting a consulting-led approach, Mentum integrates human intelligence with its proprietary smart technology, with a range of defence clients served to date, including the Royal Australian Air Force on aligning operational and tactical activities to strategy. Headed by former PwC director Petar Bielovich, the company has been part of the Optimation Group since 2014, having since doubled in size.

“The acquisition presents real opportunities for our business and our team,” said Bielovich. “FTS has a successful track record growing the companies they acquire. What they bring to us, as a smaller business, is scale, systems, a diverse client base and a desire to grow. We are excited to join them and look forward to working closely with them to expand into the national security and other industries.”

Its sixth in around the past three years, including higher education specialist ESAM Consulting in April, the acquisition comes on the back of FTS’s February purchase of Canberra strategy and management consultancy Noetic, which counts national security and defence among its core sectors. Noetic recently won a three-year contract to expand the ADF’s experimentation skills.

Citing the threats of a post-pandemic world, the government last year committed $270 billion across ten years to boost defence capabilities, with the big consulting firms rubbing their hands ever since. Among the benefactors are McKinsey, which is advising the department on a new IT operating model, and KPMG, which has pulled in tens of millions worth of defence work so far this year.