Argon & Co ropes in growth capital from private equity firm

11 May 2020 4 min. read

Global operations consulting firm Argon & Co has roped in a capital injection from French private equity firm Ardian to support its development and growth. 

Argon & Co launched in May 2018 when French consultancy Argon Consulting merged with UK-based Crimson & Co, creating a combined group of more than 230 consultants in six offices across the world. Fast forward two years and the rebranded group Argon & Co has over 270 consultants across 7 offices in Europe (Paris, London), the Middle East (Abu Dhabi), Asia (Mumbai and Singapore), Oceania (Melbourne) and North America (Atlanta).

The Paris and London headquartered consulting firm specialises in operations transformation services, with a focus on the supply chain, procurement, finance and shared services. 

According to Yvan Salamon, CEO of Argon & Co, the addition of Ardian’s funds will enable the consultancy to “accelerate its ambitious international development and growth strategy.” The firm has plans to open more offices around the world “where clients want us to be,” he said.

Argon & Co - Transforming operations

While the consulting industry is facing a slowdown in demand due to the covid-19-induced downturn, Argon & Co finds itself in one of the few bright spots of the industry: operations and supply chain. According to the latest estimates, the hardest hit segments of the global consulting industry such as change management and sustainability could see fees slashed by up to 40%. However, operations and supply chain, alongside digital and restructuring, are among the most resilient segments as they form a critical part of navigating the pandemic. 

Facing heightened demand, Salamon contested it was the right time to get the investor on board. “Operations management has never been so critical for our clients who are facing very short-term business recovery issues, and also issues of competitiveness and resilience of their operations.” 

With the need for rethinking and recalibrating supply chain and procurement strategies higher than ever in the post-corona era, and mounting environmental and sustainability concerns, also in the mid-to long term companies will need a “specialised player to help them with high value-added consulting projects,” said Salamon. 

“We apply our expertise on these subjects and work together with our clients to transform their businesses and generate real change.” 

Geoffroy de La Grandière and Frédéric Quéru, Directors at Ardian, commented: “We are thrilled to be partnering alongside Argon & Co which offers services that will be all the more critical and strategic for its clients in this new context.”

The private equity leaders added that Argon & Co is ideally positioned to capitalise on the opportunities, pointing at the firm’s leading track record in the market. Last year, Argon & Co was named one of France’s top consulting firms, and in the UK for its supply chain and digital transformation services. Meanwhile, at a global level, both ALM and Gartner lauded the firm’s portfolio of operations consulting services. 

The deal comes amid growing interest from the world of private equity into the consultancy sector. Other recent deals include investors buying Duff & Phelps for $4 billion, Delta Capita securing funds from Prytek Holdings, and Vendigital landing an investment from Livingbridge.