Projective and Exellys team up with Gimv to turbocharge growth

03 May 2021 3 min. read
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Pan-European consultancy Projective has roped in a significant investment from private equity firm Gimv, as the firm embarks on an ambitious growth path to double its revenue in the coming three years. 

Founded in 2006, Projective is a consulting firm specialised in project management. The firm helps financial services institutions with some of their most strategic and pressing programmes and change initiatives, with much of its work in the area of digital transformation, payments and risk & compliance.

The firm is the parent of Exellys, which it acquired at the start of 2020. Exellys is a technology talent incubator that recruits, trains and places young talent at companies across sectors, including financial services.

Projective and Exellys team up with Gimv to turbocharge growthWith the minority investment of Gimv, with asset under management of over €2 billion one of Belgium’s largest investors, Projective aims to “accelerate its European expansion” said CEO Stefan Dierckx, who co-founded the company in 2006 with fellow Belgian Filip Bosschaert. From its home base of Brussels, the firm has since expanded to Amsterdam, Frankfurt, London and Paris.

In these five markets, Projective will now “turbocharge its growth” said Dierckx, backed by a buy-and-build strategy. According to the chief executive, the firm already has a number of small targets on its radar, in particular companies that specialise in agile, payments, and data science. 

The end goal: more than €100 million in fee income by the end of 2023 (now: €45 million), and over 800 employees (now: 350 staff). Growth will be realised across both of the group’s Projective and Exellys labels. 

The deal comes two years after Projective returned to independence, after its leaders bought back its ownership from German-American technology company Diebold Nixdorf.

The next phase

Now with Gimv on board, Dierckx is convinced of the match for the next phase of the firm’s journey: “With its 40 years of experience, Gimv is the perfect partner to embark on this new adventure.” 

“Gimv specialises in supporting companies that demonstrate innovative strength, entrepreneurship and ambitious growth plans. They help build those plans in order to accelerate expansion. And that is exactly what we at Projective want to achieve.”

According to the Dierckx, Projective is well positioned to capitalise on strong growth opportunities in the financial services consulting industry. “The pandemic has stepped up the case of change at banks and insurers. The need for digital transformation is larger than ever.”

Citing one example, he pointed at a major infrastructure upgrade facing banks. “The Swift platform plays a key role in the payments landscape. But this standard is outdated and will soon be replaced by a more modern variant. That means that all players that utilise Swift will have to adjust their IT systems. That will have a huge impact on practically all banks. ”

Other trends that Projective expects to tap into include sustainability, ecosystem innovation, collaborating with fintechs and bigtechs, regulation, and the emergence of decentralised finance.