A.T. Kearney buys US-based data analytics consultancy Cervello

21 January 2019 Consultancy.eu 3 min. read
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Privately-held management consultancy A.T. Kearney has acquired Cervello, a US-based data analytics consultancy with around 120 employees. The deal was orchestrated by Equiteq, a UK-headquartered M&A-advisor to the professional services industry. 

The transaction, which is A.T. Kearney’s first announced deal since purchasing a strategic consultancy in the Netherlands in 2011, bolsters the firm’s digital expertise.

Founded in 2009, Cervello specialises in technology consulting, including data management, business analytics, applications development and cloud integration. The company is headquartered in the United States (Boston, New York, Dallas) and has further offices in Europe (London) and India (Bengaluru).

Equiteq advises on acquisition of Cervello by A.T. Kearney

“Winning with data, that is what it’s all about. Cervello’s deep, hands-on knowledge of big data, cloud, and data platforms will help us jointly develop more robust tools and customised solutions for our clients’ most difficult problems,” said Alex Liu, managing partner and chairman of A.T. Kearney. 

The move also marks A.T. Kearney’s consolidated push into the segments for solutions and managed services. The firms move is in sync with a broader trend in the consulting industry, which is seeing consultancy firms add more steady and predictable income streams to complement their traditional fee-per-hour based consulting work. Cervello’s solutions and managed services propositions are offered on a subscription or license basis, or through more long-term process outsourcing agreements, with a focus on Oracle and Salesforce applications.

On top of the financial benefits, Liu highlighted that leveraging Cervello’s “leave-behind” solutions and managed services will also allow A.T. Kearney’s consultants to “sustain value-delivery to clients long after they have completed the assignment.”

Scot MacGillivray, the CEO of Cervello, said that he is delighted with the integration into the top-tier global management consulting firm. “A.T. Kearney will dramatically increase our global reach, and joining forces with them will exponentially increase our business impact to our current and future clients.” 


During the sale process, MacGillivray was guided by M&A experts from Equiteq, a British-origin corporate finance advisory with offices in London, Paris, New York, Singapore and Sydney. Commenting on the firm’s support, the CEO said, “Based on their reputation in the consulting industry, we entrusted the sale of our business to Equiteq. Their unrivalled sector knowledge and unique approach to positioning businesses like ours to the market made them the obvious choice.” 

“Equiteq’s team lived up to their reputation; they did a first-class job of generating competition, guiding us through the various complexities of the transaction process, creating multiple options for us to consider, and guiding our decision making with the right advice at the right time. Their dogged determination, attention to detail and unwavering commitment has enabled us to achieve this tremendous outcome, setting us up for an exciting, successful future with A.T. Kearney.”

Adam Tindall, Managing Director of Equiteq’s North American operation and lead deal-maker on the transaction, commented; “The Cervello team have built an exceptionally strong business in the data analytics space and it has been a privilege to help them achieve this partnership with A.T. Kearney. The combination stands to provide significant incremental value to both parties’ clients and opportunities for their employees.”