Deloitte ups agency acquisitions tally with The Explainers

Digital communications agency joins a growing list of agencies acquired by traditional consulting houses to help organisations cope with modern customer experience design and management

The team behind digital communications agency, The Explainers, will form a new operating unit within Deloitte’s Customer practice under an agreement announced today.

The Explainers and its eight-strong team will become a new ‘Narrative Strategy’ operating unit within the larger consultancy practice that works closely with Deloitte Digital. Owner and founder, Matt Taylor, will become a director at Deloitte, based in Sydney, with the full team reporting up into Deloitte’s national design lead and consulting partner, Shane Currey.

According to the company, the Explainers uses animation, film, installation, infographics, written stories, graphic novels and other media to help clients better articulate their brand story and assist with organisational change. Clients include Westpac, IAG, AMP and the Human Rights Commission, and there’s an emphasis on government, innovation and financial services sectors.

Deloitte CEO, Cindy Hook, said significantly rising demand for its advisory services made the investment into adjacent capabilities such as those provided by The Explainers a no-brainer.

“The Explainers are leaders in creating compelling stories that explain complex ideas. They very much complement our design thinking approach to problem solving and as part of our Customer practice, will help our clients connect with their customers in ever-more engaging ways,” she said.

Deloitte Digital Asia-Pacific lead partner, Frank Farrall, who also heads up Deloitte’s Customer practice, said the deal was also complementary to the consultancy group’s acquisition of spatial design agency, MashUp, in August last year, and its efforts to provide a one-stop shop for customer experience advice.

The deal is also reflective of the blurring line between traditional consultancy houses, such as Deloitte, the media and marketing agency landscape, and IT integrators brought about thanks to digital transformation and increasingly technology and data-led customer engagement.

From left: Shane Currey, Deloitte National Design lead, Matt Taylor (seated) and Nathan Fitzpatrick (standing) from The Explainers, and Frank Farrall, Deloitte Customer Practice leader
From left: Shane Currey, Deloitte National Design lead, Matt Taylor (seated) and Nathan Fitzpatrick (standing) from The Explainers, and Frank Farrall, Deloitte Customer Practice leader


“Our brand and spatial team has doubled in size in the past 12 months and we have just hired a new Melbourne partner to further build our retail offering,” Farrall continued. “As evidence by Deloitte Digital’s acquisition of creative agency, Heat, back in February, we see huge opportunity in increasingly providing our clients with creative content as well as strategic business advice.”

Financial terms have not been disclosed, but Farrall said The Explainers did about $1.2 million in revenue last year and is expected to double that in the first year based on Deloitte's experience with MashUp.

Taylor said storytelling has become a vital part of helping organisations cope with the disruptive change impacting the way their do business thanks to digital and transformative consumer behaviour.

“Combining our narrative skills and strategic experience with the power of the Deloitte network opens us up to a vast knowledge base and new relationships, which is incredibly exciting for us,” he said.

Other acquisitions and alliances made by Deloitte in recent years include technology integrator, SixTree, cloud infrastructure advisory group, Cloud Solutions Group, and social analytics consultancy, Digivizer.

Rival consultancy houses have also been on the acquisition trail either to boost integration or agency smarts. Accenture, for example, acquired service design agency, Fjord, and ecommerce services firm, Acquity Group, in 2013, followed by digital agency, Reactive Media, in 2014/2015, then creative tech studio, Chaotic Moon, in July 2015. All of these now sit under Accenture Interactive, its digital services arm.

Follow CMO on Twitter: @CMOAustralia, take part in the CMO conversation on LinkedIn: CMO ANZ, join us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CMOAustralia, or check us out on Google+: google.com/+CmoAu

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments
cmo-xs-promo

Latest Videos

More Videos

Thanks for your feedback, Rabi. While we introduced the ROO concept using a marketing example, I also believe that it is pertinent to man...

Iggy Pintado

Introducing Return on Outcome (ROO) - Brand science - CMO Australia

Read more

Thanks for your insight, Philip. Return On Outcome (ROO) requires balanced thinking with the focus on outcomes as opposed to returns.

Iggy Pintado

Introducing Return on Outcome (ROO) - Brand science - CMO Australia

Read more

Beautiful article.

Hodlbaba

15 brands jumping into NFTs

Read more

"Blue" is really gorgeous and perfectly imitates a human customer support operator. Personally, I won't order a chatbot development for m...

Nate Ginsburg

Why the newest member of BT’s contact centre is a chatbot

Read more

As today’s market changes rapidly, the tools we use change, and it is important to adapt to those changes to continue to succeed in busin...

Anna Duda

Report: 10 digital commerce trends here to stay

Read more

Blog Posts

How the pandemic revealed the antidote to marketing’s image problem

What does marketing truly ‘own’ in most organisations? Brand and campaigns, definitely. Customer experience? That remains contested ground.

Murray Howe

Founder, The Markitects

Still pursuing a 360-degree view of the customer?

On the Internet, nobody knows you’re a dog.” It may have been true in 1993 when this caption to a Peter Steiner cartoon appeared in the New Yorker. But after 30 years online, it’s no longer the case.

Agility in 2022

Only the agile will survive and thrive in this environment and that’s why in 2022, agility will need to be a whole-business priority.

Sam McConnell

Melbourne bureau chief, Alpha Digital

Sign in