Dutch consultancy IG&H ropes in investor for international growth

12 July 2022 Consultancy.eu 3 min. read
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IG&H has over the past five years grown from a local Dutch consulting firm into an international player with 350 employees in three countries. Together with investor IK Partners the firm now wants to expand its position and enter new European markets.

The investment by the London-headquartered private equity firm is a new chapter for IG&H. Since its founding in 1988 the consultancy was owned by a partner group. The shareholders have now sold a majority stake for an undisclosed amount, with the existing management team reinvesting in the firm.

Jan van Hasenbroek, co-founder and CEO of IG&H, commented: “This is an extremely exciting time for IG&H. The support of IK Partners, with their deep market expertise and pan-European presence, will allow us to support our clients better and pursue further international expansion.”

Dutch consultancy IG&H ropes in investor for international growth

In the first three decades of its existence IG&H focused on the Dutch consulting market. The consulting firm established itself as one of the leading players in three industry verticals: financial services, retail and healthcare (IG&H was one of the strategic consultants to the Dutch ministry of healthcare during the Covid-19 pandemic).

From 2018 onwards, IG&H is in a strong growth trajectory, which builds on its transition from a classical management consultancy into an end-to-end digital transformation specialist. Large investments were made in digital capabilities (especially in the Outsystems domain) and through an acquisition the firm entered the Portuguese market.

Earlier in 2019 IG&H had already acquired GroupLife, which provided IG&H a strong footprint in the pensions segment and expanded its team in Belgium.

Last year, the internationalisation ambition materialised further with expansion into Germany, Europe’s largest consultancy market. The firm’s Munich office works for clients such as ANWR, DPD and Pon.

“IG&H has recorded impressive growth in the consulting market, more than doubling its team and nearly doubling its revenues since 2018,” said Norman Bremer, Partner at IK Partners. “We are looking forward to supporting the company in future growth plans through consolidation of a fragmented European marketplace and continued expansion in a growing addressable market.”

With the added financial muscle, IG&H will seek “select acquisition targets to accelerate growth” and invest in “scaling up existing services,” said Van Hasenbroek.

IG&H also will invest in cementing its position as a top employer. Earlier this year, the firm was recognised as one of the top Dutch consultancies to work for.

Private equity in consulting

The deal continues a streak of major private equity investments in Netherlands-based consultancies. Well-known recent examples include Valcon (which is backed by Waterland), Highberg Groep (backed by a German investor), Improven (backed by Quadrum Capital), and Magnus (backed by Holland Capital).

Also at a global level private equity is growing its stakes in the consulting space. According to data from Equiteq, financial investors were involved with more than a quarter of all consulting deals last year. If the deal machines of Accenture and the Big Four are not included in the analysis (together they closed 80+ deals in 2021), then the share of private equity is even larger.