Solidiance continues expansion abroad while its NextContinent alliance grows

24 April 2018 Consultancy.asia

NextContinent, an international network of member consulting firms, including Asian strategy consultancy Solidiance, has expanded its footprint with a presence in the UK. Solidiance itself meanwhile continues its ventures abroad with the promise of more locations to come.

With the admission of Curzon & Company, a UK-based management and transformation firm, the NextContinent network now spans 29 countries, covering every continent and major hub with the support of 4,500 professionals delivering services in the industries of insurance, automotive, financial services, healthcare, energy and transport among many other sectors.

In the NextContinent network, Curzon joins the likes of Eurogroup Consulting, with locations dotted throughout Europe, North Africa and the US; DACH-based advisory P3 Group with its own US and Canadian branches in addition to Europe; Nexe the Way of Change, which serves the network’s Spanish-speaking territories in Europe and South America, and Asia-based strategy outfit Solidiance – which covers greater Asia, the Middle East, and has itself expanded in recent times to Australia, the US and Europe with offices in Sydney, San Diego and Germany.

With a proud focus on its ‘home-turf advantage’ across Pan-Asia, and its growth driven by an emphasis on on-the-ground local market knowledge, Solidiance’s expansion beyond the continent seeks to feed back into the firm’s Asian expertise, serving as a platform to aid organisations with their own business expansion plans into and out of Asia in areas such as market entry strategies, M&A due diligence, competitive benchmarking, growth strategies, marketing and digital transformations.Solidiance AsiaLaunching with offices in Singapore and China in 2006, the consulting firm has since added locations at least every other year, with a strong focus on emergent Southeast Asia, including Thailand, Vietnam Indonesia, Myanmar, the Philippines and Vietnam, and more recently with an expansion to the UEA, Lebanon, Germany, the United States and Australia over the past three years – with the firm’s website teasing more to come in 2018.

Damien Duhamel, Solidiance CEO and Managing Partner Asia Pacific, has previously said of the firm’s strategy for growth; “Solidiance has been growing very rapidly since its inception. We however remain careful to drive growth as opposed to have growth driving our business. We rather grow slower but build stronger foundations and enjoy sustainable profits. Many young consulting firms are built around a nucleus of two-three people. We build systems to avoid over-dependence on our management.”

In the interview with the French Chamber of Commerce in Singapore, Duhamel concluded; “Our coverage of emerging Asia is very solid already and we intend to leverage that further. We have been approached several times by large consultancies with the desire to acquire us but we think there is still plenty of growth ahead for us. So we will remain for a while the only Asia-focused growth strategy consulting firm. That suits us well.”

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Kantar Consulting launches retail and shopper practice in Singapore

22 February 2019 Consultancy.asia

Kantar Consulting has launched its retail, sales and shopper offering in Singapore with a trio of executive appointments.

Following last year’s launch of an advanced data and analytics research centre in Singapore under Kantar’s freshly established analytics wing, the WPP-owned firm’s growth consulting arm Kantar Consulting has now launched its Retail, Sales & Shopper practice in the city-state – bringing in a number of key hires, including David Heijkoop as director and Lies Ellison-Davis as executive advisor.

Established last year through the merger of four Kantar brands – Kantar Added Value, Kantar Futures, Kantar Vermeer and Kantar Retail (the latter which functioned as Kantar’s former retail, sales, ecommerce and shopper division) – Kantar Consulting is a specialist sales and marketing advisory serving the retail, financial services, automotive, tech and fast moving consumer goods sectors among others.

"We are creating Kantar Consulting to fulfil our ambition of bringing a deeper, more rounded consulting offer to our clients,” Kantar CEO Eric Salama said at the time of the new entity’s formation. “Alone and in combination with other capabilities, Kantar Consulting will be a core part of Kantar and WPP’s success in the future.”Kantar Consulting launches retail and shopper practice in SingaporeWith over 1,000 analysts spread across offices in Europe, the Americas, Africa and the Asia Pacific, Kantar Consulting has now announced the launch of its Retail, Sales & Shopper practice in Singapore, which will serve as the offering’s regional Southeast Asia hub and is said to have been established in response to growing demand for regionally-specific support.

To support the launch of the new retail practice, Kantar Consulting has brought in a trio of executives, including former Friesland Campina pair David Heijkoop and Lies Ellison-Davis as respectively director and executive advisor. Heijkoop and Ellison-Davis have both been at the Dutch dairy giant in Asia for more than eight years, most recently serving as Business Development Director (Heijkoop) and Global Chief Commercial Officer (Ellison-Davis).

They will further by joined by Marc Delbos joined as Associate Director, who crosses after seven and a half years with Red Bull in Hong Kong. “We are very excited to have Lies, David and Marc join the team,” said Kantar Consulting Southeast Asia Managing Partner Stephane Alpern, noting the current team of 25 brand and marketing consultants. “Their breadth of client-side experience will help us identify growth opportunities with an omnichannel lens.”

The continued market push from Kantar – including the recent launch of a second office in Australia along with a media & analytics practice in Canada – comes at a time when its owner, advertising giant WPP, is exploring options for a partial sell-off due to sustained market pressure – in part due to industry encroachment from the likes of Accenture and Deloitte. A potential Kantar sale could raise an estimated $4.5 billion for WPP.