ICON advises Focus Group Europe on its sale to Accenture

ICON Corporate Finance have advised the shareholders of Focus Group Europe on its sale to Accenture. Focus Group Europe is a London based, privately owned, consulting services provider and software reseller and is one of the largest remaining pure-play ServiceNow® consulting partners in the UK. Focus Group Europe was founded in 2009 and earned ServiceNow’s coveted Gold Services and Sales Partner designation.

The acquisition of Focus Group Europe is part of a strategic growth plan aimed at strengthening Accenture’s position as a leading provider of ServiceNow services and cloud implementations globally. It follows the acquisition of Germany-based solid-serVision earlier this year, Nashco, a leader in the Canadian ServiceNow market, in November 2016 and US-based Cloud Sherpas in 2015.

Brian Parker head of M&A at ICON Corporate Finance commented: “There has been a wave of overseas acquirers in the UK Technology sector in the past few years. In fact 7 of our last 10 exits have been to overseas owned acquirers – including major corporates such as Accenture, Thomson Reuters, NTT and Telstra. Buyers are looking for well run, profitable and growing businesses; Focus Group Europe ticks all these boxes. We generated good buyer interest but shareholders chose Accenture partly due to the strong cultural fit”.

John Gilleran CEO of Focus Group Europe commented: “Selling a business is a far from straightforward journey. We were delighted with Brian from Icon, he introduced us to a variety of interested buyers and negotiated an attractive deal for shareholders but also provided solid advice to help us navigate around the banana skins that were thrown in our direction”.

Accenture had $33bn in revenues in 2016 and employs nearly 400,000 staff, providing a broad range of services and solutions in strategy, consulting, digital, technology and operations. The acquisition solidifies Accenture’s position as a leader in the ServiceNow partner ecosystem and adds more than 70 professionals to the team and, in combination with recent German acquisition solid serVision, creates a powerhouse in the region.

Ciaran Cosgrave, Managing Director and EALA Lead of Accenture ServiceNow Practice said: “Combining Focus Group Europe’s talent and sales and delivery capabilities with Accenture’s client portfolio, global workforce and industry and functional expertise creates a powerful platform to drive growth, and is a natural complement to Accenture’s regional and global position.”