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Accenture to acquire Advantium and Meridian Informed Purchasing

11 July 2006  |  4485 views  |  0 Source: Accenture

Accenture (NYSE:ACN) is enhancing its finance and accounting business process outsourcing (BPO) capabilities by agreeing to acquire two companies that help clients prevent, detect and recover "lost profits" through analysis of payables data and processes.

Terms of the agreement with Advantium Inc. of Hudson, Ohio, including its related entity XPAN LLC, and Meridian Informed Purchasing Ltd. of St. Albans, United Kingdom, were not disclosed. Closing is expected within 30 days.

The two companies use sophisticated processes and proprietary software to analyze clients' procurement and payables data to prevent, detect and recover the lost profits, or erroneous payments, which can result from human error, system-integration issues, contract non-compliance and fraud.

"Advantium and Meridian will further differentiate Accenture's offering of tools and capabilities to help clients increase profitability, optimize payment terms, improve working capital, tighten operating controls, enhance compliance, and gain insight into their spending among suppliers," said Kevin Campbell, senior managing director of Accenture's BPO organization. "As the market leader in finance-and-accounting BPO, we're dedicated to expanding our offering with enhanced services related to profit recovery and analytics."

Through their experience working with clients, Advantium and Meridian have established that payment and vendor-pricing errors and unrealized rebates, allowances and discounts can cost a company up to 0.1 percent of its total spending with suppliers. The firms also believe that lost-profit recovery audits uncover more than $5 billion in savings each year in the United States alone.

Founded in 1994 and 1995, respectively, Advantium and Meridian formed an alliance in 2003 to provide their services internationally. The staffs of the two companies are expected to join Accenture's finance and accounting BPO unit, Accenture Finance Solutions, along with Meridian executives Les Bailey and Ashley Golby and Advantium CEO Jim Spreng.

Acquiring Advantium and Meridian will enhance Accenture's existing capabilities around the procure-to-pay process by providing clients with insights and analytics-based services that can be used to drive high performance. Accenture will offer profit and recovery analytics services to business process outsourcing and consulting clients.

Today's announcement represents another step in Accenture's strategy to offer industry-defining outsourcing services and capabilities to serve a wide range of clients in each area of its outsourcing business. This past April, Accenture acquired the business process outsourcing assets of Savista Corp. and established the Accenture BPO Services unit which provides bundled finance and accounting and human resource services to middle-market companies. These acquisitions reinforce Accenture's BPO strategy of building standardized, differentiated assets and driving business outcomes for its clients.

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