Waterland establishes new growth platform for consulting with Horn & Company

Photo: Dr. Gregor Hengst, Part­ner at Water­land Private Equity
13. Octo­ber 2021

Munich / Düssel­dorf — The market for top manage­ment consul­ting has been charac­te­ri­zed by incre­asing conso­li­da­tion trends in recent years. In this dyna­mic envi­ron­ment, Water­land Private Equity and top manage­ment consul­tancy Horn & Company have ente­red into a 50/50 part­ner­ship to create a new growth plat­form for mid-market consul­ting firms.

Horn & Company is one of the leading consul­ting firms in the DACH region in the areas of stra­tegy, digi­tiza­tion and earnings enhance­ment for finan­cial service provi­ders as well as indus­trial and retail compa­nies. The share­hol­ders of Horn & Company will remain with the company in their usual capa­city and will conti­nue to assume the entre­pre­neu­rial lead respon­si­bi­lity for the opera­tio­nal consul­ting busi­ness in their role as shareholders.

Foun­ded in 2009 by Dr. Chris­tian Horn and Dr. Alex­an­der Bethke-Jaeni­­cke, among others, Horn & Company is a top manage­ment consul­tancy specia­li­zing in finan­cial service provi­ders and indus­trial compa­nies with head­quar­ters in Düssel­dorf. Horn’s focus is on the design and effec­tive imple­men­ta­tion of stra­tegy proces­ses and the digi­tal trans­for­ma­tion of finan­cial service provi­ders and indus­trial and retail compa­nies with a clear focus on measura­ble P&L impro­ve­ment, inclu­ding through data-driven analy­tics. Buil­ding on the high stan­dards of exper­tise and senio­rity of Horn & Company’s consul­ting teams, the consul­ting firm has repea­tedly been named Hidden Cham­pion of top manage­ment consul­ting for banks and insu­rance compa­nies by Manage­ment and Science. Since its foun­ding, Horn & Company has consis­t­ently achie­ved double-digit growth rates per year and today employs over 100 people at six loca­ti­ons in Germany and Austria. The entire Horn & Company leader­ship team remains active with the company.

Focus on streng­thening core compe­ten­cies and inor­ga­nic growth

Buil­ding on the company’s strong orga­nic growth, Horn & Company is expec­ted to become an even stron­ger brand in the DACH consul­ting market through indus­try conso­li­da­tion as a result of its part­ner­ship with Water­land. To this end, the part­ners plan to expand Horn & Company’s range of services in the areas of digi­tal trans­for­ma­tion, asset-based consul­ting, and data analy­tics, among others, as well as in other func­tional subject areas, in order to be able to offer custo­mers a holi­stic consul­ting ecosys­tem. By further dove­tail­ing and inte­gra­ting the current core compe­tence fields, the further expan­sion of the Indus­try and Trade busi­ness area in parti­cu­lar is to be acce­le­ra­ted. From the recently opened branch office in Vienna, the succes­sive inter­na­tio­na­liza­tion into neigh­bor­ing Euro­pean count­ries is also planned.

“In recent years, we have firmly estab­lished oursel­ves in the market and convin­ced a high-cali­­ber client base of our unique value propo­si­tion. Now we have to conti­nue our growth path and deve­lop new oppor­tu­ni­ties through stra­te­gic steps, espe­ci­ally in the area of inor­ga­nic growth. We see poten­tial for this both verti­cally and hori­zon­tally as well as with regard to our inter­na­tio­na­liza­tion stra­tegy,” says Dr. Horn, Mana­ging Part­ner at Horn & Company. Dr. Bethke-Jaeni­­cke, also Mana­ging Part­ner, adds: “Water­land has abso­lut­ely convin­ced us in our search for a strong growth part­ner. Water­land shares our vision of a high-growth conso­li­da­tion plat­form for medium-sized consul­ting firms and the idea of an ecosys­tem for digi­tal trans­for­ma­tion estab­lished by Horn & Company in recent years, has the neces­sary opera­tio­nal under­stan­ding in the field of profes­sio­nal services and the neces­sary indus­try exper­tise to open a new chap­ter in the Horn & Company success story toge­ther with us. We look forward to working together.”

“From the very begin­ning, we were convin­ced of Horn & Company’s clear stra­te­gic profile and unique posi­tio­ning. The consul­ting indus­try has proven to be extre­mely resi­li­ent during the chal­len­ging last months and is still highly frag­men­ted, espe­ci­ally in Germany. We see promi­sing growth poten­tial in the market, espe­ci­ally through inor­ga­nic value levers. We look forward to support­ing Horn & Company’s expe­ri­en­ced manage­ment team on this deve­lo­p­ment path,” says Dr. Gregor Hengst (photo), Part­ner at Water­land Private Equity.

Water­land has exten­sive expe­ri­ence in the profes­sio­nal services sector through corre­spon­ding invest­ments in seve­ral Euro­pean count­ries. Water­land curr­ently alre­ady has invest­ments in compa­nies such as First Consul­ting (process consul­ting), Moore (accoun­ting & audi­ting), 9altitudes (Micro­soft Dyna­mics service provi­der), Skay­link (mana­ged cloud services), and Intracto and Side­show (digi­tal agencies).

About Water­land

Water­land is an inde­pen­dent private equity invest­ment firm that helps compa­nies realize their growth plans. With substan­tial finan­cial support and indus­try exper­tise, Water­land enables its port­fo­lio compa­nies to acce­le­rate growth both orga­ni­cally and through acqui­si­ti­ons. Water­land has offices in the Nether­lands (Bussum), Belgium (Antwerp), France (Paris), Germany (Hamburg, Munich), Poland (Warsaw), the UK (London, Manches­ter), Ireland (Dublin), Denmark (Copen­ha­gen) and Switz­er­land (Zurich). Nine billion euros in equity funds are curr­ently under management.

Water­land has consis­t­ently outper­for­med with its invest­ments since its incep­tion in 1999. The company ranks fifth globally in the current HEC/Dow Jones Private Equity Perfor­mance Ranking (Janu­ary 2021).

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