Lisa Chapman, Big4.com
November 2, 2010
Just today, there is a flurry of merger and acquisition activity in the Big Four space, and this reflects the mega trend we have been noticing over recent months, in that M&A activity in this space is high and likely to continue to be that way for a while.
Across the spectrum, we are noticing that the larger firms are absorbing smaller firms, or in other cases, loose alliances are being solidified into actual combinations.
We infer this is due to the appetite for acquisitions and niche capabilities now showing up in the larger firms combined with a nice exit strategy for smaller firms.
Another trend is that size does seem to matter, and smaller firms which have had general attachments to larger entities are now completing the circle by merging themselves into the larger conglomerate.
Just today, November 2, 2010, a busy day for M&A activity, we note five mergers or combinations spread all over the world:
KPMG Saudi Arabia and KPMG Norway join KPMG Europe LLP, bringing that combination total to 16 firms, and solidifying KPMG Europe both in Scandinavia and the Middle East
Huron Consutling purchases Click Commerce to provide enhanced services to research institutions. This despite Huron’s languishing stock price.
Accenture purchases Knowledge Rules to enhances its Pegasystems BPM capabilities
Jingdu Tianhua Hong Kong becomes Grant Thornton Hong Kong with 100 professionals and ambitious plans for growth
BDO USA attracts partners and firms from McBride and Shopa in Delaware USA, previously McBride and Shopa was part of the BDO Seidman alliance since 2000
As we said earlier, this looks to be only the beginning of a long-term upward trend in merger activity in this space.