EY acquires Australian SAP consultancy Plaut IT and Malaysian subsidiary

01 February 2019 Consultancy.asia 3 min. read

Professional services firm EY has made another purchase in the digital domain, picking up Australian SAP specialist Plaut IT and its Malaysian subsidiary Baseliner.

The third such acquisition in the APAC region in a matter of months, following the purchase of Singapore-headquartered digital consultancy Adelphi in November and the Malaysia-based cybersecurity specialist Xynapse a month prior, Ernst & Young has further boosted its digital capabilities with the pick-up of Australian SAP solutions provider Plaut IT and its Malaysian subsidiary Baseliner Consulting.

The acquisition will see another 130 digital professionals join EY’s Asia-Pacific technology services practice – with around 30 of them to be based in Malaysia – adding to the more than 200 experts on-boarded through the prior two deals. The Big Four firm now boasts a regional headcount in the realm of 45,000, contributing to what is its hottest growth market, with EY’s APAC division last year achieving $4.1 billion in revenues at a five-year CAGR of 10.2 percent.

Founded in 2000 and based in Sydney, Plaut IT is one of Australia’s largest locally-owned SAP consultancies, pulling in more than $30 million in revenues in 2017 according to Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) data – with local clients including Toyota, Sanitarium, and a number of state and federal government departments. Plaut’s specialist social media and tech marketing offspring Echo Junction also forms part of the EY purchase, with both to be rebranded.EY acquires Australian and Malaysian SAP consultancy Plaut ITBased in Kuala Lumpur meanwhile, the 2012-founded Baseliner is a SAP solutions specialist providing CRM design and support services. Initially funded and then fully acquired by Plaut in 2013, Baseliner’s managing director and Plaut Chairman David Prior will join EY’s tech services division in Sydney, as well as Plaut CEO Sebastian Moore who has been made partner and Plaut COO and Echo Junction founder Adam Fraser as a Director in EY’s Customer  practice.

“The acquisition provides our team with a well-rounded set of capabilities and skills and provides the potential for us to work on large scale business transformations,” remarked Prior. “EY and Plaut IT put people first while also striving to provide continual value to clients, this alignment of values adds to the strength of the combined group… We are excited about the work we will now have the opportunity to participate in.”

"Agile business transformation is a key solution and growth driver for EY, and this acquisition further enhances our strong SAP capability. In Malaysia, Baseliner has an excellent reputation for its focus on CRM and its capability to deliver SAP cloud enterprise solutions and on-premise services,” said EY Asean Advisory Managing Partner, Chow Sang Hoe, who further noted the year-on-year growth of above 20 percent in EY’s technology transformation business over the past decade.

Although the purchase price remains undisclosed, EY advisory Oceania leader Lynn Kraus revealed to the Australian Financial Review that the firm expects earnings will be accretive within the year. With EY having also picked up Australian boutique change consultancy Articulate in July last year, Krauss also commented on EY’s ongoing market pursuit, with “the largest pipeline of acquisition opportunities that she can remember the firm having had”.