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Ernst & Young (EY) Acquires Digital Engineering, Automation Consultancy

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Ernst & Young (EY) has announced two acquisitions: UK-based digital engineering consultancy Digital Detox Ventures Limited and New Zealand-based Q4 Associates Limited. The financial terms of the acquisitions were not disclosed.

These are technology M&A deals numbered 694 and 695 that ChannelE2E has covered so far in 2022. See more than 1,000 technology M&A deals involving MSPs, MSSPs & IT service providers listed here.

EY Acquires Digital Detox and Q4 Associates: Business Backgrounds

Digital Detox, founded in 2004, is based in London, England. The company has 33 employees listed on LinkedIn. Digital Detox’s areas of expertise include digital strategy, service design, visual design, experience design, prototyping, front-end development, back-end development, Agile delivery management, UX design, technical partner, digital transformation, application development and sustainable development.

Q4 Associates, founded in 2007, is based in Auckland, New Zealand. The company has 12 employees listed on LinkedIn. Q4’s areas of expertise include RPA consulting, RPA strategy, and robotic operating models.

Ernst & Young, founded in 1989, is headquartered in London, England. The company has 355,764 employees listed on LinkedIn. EY’s areas of expertise include advisory, assurance, tax, transactions, audit, mergers, M&A, financial services, accounting, professional services, law, technology, consulting, data, transformation, strategy, legal, digital transformation, legal, growth and managed services.

Digital Detox: Furthering EY's Digital Engineering Capabilities

The acquisition of Digital Detox will help further build EY’s digital engineering capabilities, according to the company.

In April, EY unveiled plans to double the size of its UK and Ireland consulting services over the next four years, backed by £75 million (about US$92 million) of investment. This is in addition to the £95m (US$116 million) that has already been invested in EY Consulting services since 2020.

Donovan Justice, CEO, Digital Detox
Donovan Justice, CEO, Digital Detox
Alison Kay, managing partner for client services, UK & Ireland, EY

Alison Kay, managing partner for client services, UK & Ireland, Ernst & Young, commented:

“The acquisition will bring a range of new capabilities and skills to support EY clients across four important sectors – health wellness and sciences, real estate hospitality and construction and TMT. It will strengthen EY thriving consulting services and will support EY teams' growth in the UK and Ireland. Digital Detox follows the recent acquisitions of AgilityWorks, Frank Hirth, Pythagoras Communications, Seaton Partners, Lane4, PeakEPM and most recently Blackdot – all of which have helped EY teams meet the changing needs and demands of clients.”

Donovan Justice, CEO, Digital Detox, said:

“Digital Detox joining together with the EY organisation will give us the opportunity to apply our collective skills to a range of clients around the world. Working collaboratively with the EY teams, we’ll be able to accelerate our growth and work with clients on their transformation journeys.”

Q4 Associates: Bolstering EY’s Financial Services Offerings

The Q4 Associates acquisition will improve EY New Zealand’s offerings to the financial services sector by strengthening its existing intelligent automation and robotics process automation capabilities, the company said.

Q4’s team of 12 technology consultants will goin the EY New Zealand financial services technology consulting team, with Q4 Associate’s co-founders Samantha Osborne, Maurice Dubey and Shayde Boryer joining the leadership team in New Zealand, the company said. The team will be based out of the Auckland office and will service clients across New Zealand and Australia, according to EY.

Samantha Osborne, CEO, Q4 Associates
Paul Roberts, Financial Services Leader, EY New Zealand

Paul Roberts, Financial Services Leader, EY New Zealand commented on the deal:

“As we continue to grow our recently formed New Zealand financial services practice, it made sense to bring on board a team of highly experienced IA and RPA professionals.

“The addition of the Q4 Associates team to our existing New Zealand financial services practice, along with a number of other significant hires and promotions over the last six months, means we are rapidly expanding our presence in the market and continuing to bring our financial services clients the deep industry knowledge and experience they need to help them address some of their most complex challenges."

Samantha Osborne, CEO, Q4 Associates, said:

“This is an exciting next step in the evolution of our business and we are looking forward to being part of the EY regional and global network, which will present fantastic new opportunities for both our people and our clients. With EY looking to grow their existing team by bringing in key talent with deep data skills and local market experience, we knew this opportunity would be a great fit for us as we start a new chapter for our business and the joining together of our teams creates a compelling service offering in the local and regional market."

EY's Continued Growth

EY plans to continue its growth initiatives both organically and through continued acquisitions, the company has indicated. Key EY acquisitions have also involved application, cybersecurity and managed services expertise, as well as digital and customer experience expertise. The company has completed more than a dozen deals since 2018.