Pieter Coucke on the growth of BCG Platinion in Belgium

16 April 2019 Consultancy.eu

Pieter Coucke has been with BCG Platinion for the past two years. The co-founder of Boston Consulting Group’s subsidiary in Belgium sat down with Consultancy.eu to talk about BCG Platinion’s growth and ambitions.

Pieter Coucke is one of the pioneers of BCG Platinion in Belgium, which was founded in April 2017. “We are currently expanding the practice in Belgium,” says Coucke. BCG Platinion helps clients from various sectors with their digitisation endeavours and with the transformation of their IT operating model. The consultancy does this by offering its customers digital design and technical services and combining these with the best IT solutions in their class, in order to help client's organisations successfully navigate digital change. 

BCG Platinion often works together with teams from parent company BCG. For example, the Technology Advantage (TA) team helps BCG Platinion with business strategy and the financial aspects of IT, while Gamma, which consists of data scientists, supports with advanced analytics expertise. Coucke: “BCG Platinion helps customers understand what AI is and what they can do with it, while TA and Gamma support us in identifying interesting AI investment opportunities with customers.” 

In addition, BCG Platinion also supports other BCG teams, such as its Digital Ventures (DV) arm. Coucke explains: “Digital Ventures creates new digital business models. We help them with projects when they need expertise in customer journeys, UX / UI (user experience/interface) design and IT architecture.”

Pieter Coucke on the growth of BCG Platinion in Belgium

Coucke reflects that BCG Platinion was set up in Belgium to meet growing demand from BCG’s customers in the region for IT services. “Customers realise that it’s useless to develop a good business strategy without taking into account its impact on the IT of an organisation. A strategy that incorporates digital issues can bring a range of benefits. BCG customers were therefore asking for a specialist BCG Platinion team, because they were aware that independent experts who understand both business and technology can add value to their companies.” 

“We have even had several customers who approached us on their own thanks to our international reputation [BCG Platinion has more than 25 offices worldwide, including thirteen in Europe]. This is what I am perhaps most proud of for my team.”

BCG Platinion is currently developing at a good pace in Belgium, Coucke says. “Our goal is to attract even more top companies in the coming year. We would like to deploy our multidisciplinary team to help even more organisations become successful. To that end, we will also invest in human capital. Our goal, for example, is to have a core team by the end of this year that consists of around twenty professionals.”

The technology consulting firm works closely with its fellow offices in the so-called WESA region, which stands for Western Europe, South America and Africa. “This brings rise to various opportunities. It accommodates people who like to travel very far, while people who like to concentrate on a specific niche also have sufficient work opportunities. By regularly participating in multi-day team building and knowledge exchange events at a WESA level, we are building an internal, global network of experts who support and learn from each other. Further contributing to that mission is my goal for the coming period.”


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Working as a young professional at ACE Company

19 April 2019 Consultancy.eu

Janco Jordaan joined boutique consulting firm ACE Company seven months ago. The young professional reflects on the highlights of life with his new employer, as well as what he has learned since arriving at ACE.

ACE Company is a boutique consulting firm from the Netherlands that focuses on regulatory change in the financial services industry. The firm’s clients typically are financial institutions such as banks, insurance companies, asset managers and pension funds, as well as regulators and supervisors. Having enjoyed growing demand, the firm has been on a recruitment drive in recent months.

Having spent five years in the legal sector, Janco Jordaan decided that the time was right for a new challenge in consulting. He joined ACE as a Junior Consultant, driven by a desire to broaden his business knowledge. “ACE’s area of expertise – implementing regulatory change in the financial sector – promises for an exciting challenge, which I am definitely up for. I wanted to surround myself with experts; ACE was a perfect fit in this regard.”Working as a young professional at ACE CompanyDuring his first seven months, Jordaan, who holds a Master’s degree in International Business Law, has mainly been focused in the banking sector, working on analysis enabling a cross-domain understanding on the planning and maturity of regulatory topics throughout the bank. His work takes place at a time when regulatory change has grown into one of bank’s top strategic focus areas for the coming years. Amid a growingly complex landscape, and in a bid to curb reputational and operations risks, getting compliance right has elevated itself into a boardroom topic – the recent media attack on ING on the back of its AML blunder demonstrated just how important scrutiny can be.

Asked how he is able to keep his knowledge up to speed in order to operate at the forefront of change, he pointed to the full-fledged support from the team. “The seniority and diversity of ACE’s team means that there is a great deal to be learned from team members.” He added, “ACE embraces diversity. This means we have a team with all sort of different backgrounds e.g. different cultures and various career paths.”

Training on the job and a fixed curriculum for training ensures that knowledge and capacities are lined up with client demands. Jordaan: “We also have internal projects and knowledge sharing initiatives to ensure up to date knowledge. And every Friday, ACE organises a team meeting focused on knowledge transfer and team-building.”  

According to Jordaan, one of the best things about working at ACE however is the firm’s open culture. “To me the culture at ACE is best described by the words: balanced, sophisticated and real.”