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Guidehouse is Buying Grant Thornton’s Public Sector Advisory Practice (UPDATE)

Ed. note: Internal email regarding the acquisition sent to Grant Thornton staff included below. This is a developing story.

A tipster reached out to us this morning to let us know the rumor mill is churning over Guidehouse potentially picking up GTPS. “This took some people by surprise when they read about it on Fishbowl,” our tipster said. This appears to be the post in question:

An unexpected 2 p.m. all-hands call was announced by noon and per our tipster, the deal is going through pending approval from antitrust regulators.

Things are moving quick: the deal is expected to close in 60 days, everyone will be sticking around (for now), and they anticipate the transition will be about a month and a half.

Regarding the all-hands call our tipster writes:

They had about five minutes of Q&A, answered about three questions. One person said no layoffs, the other said “no large layoffs”

We reached out to Grant Thornton’s media department to get clarification on layoffs, a spokesperson curved the question and directed me to the official press release. Speaking of the press release, it’s official:

Guidehouse and Grant Thornton LLP (Grant Thornton) today announced they have signed a definitive agreement under which Guidehouse, a portfolio company of Veritas Capital, will acquire Grant Thornton’s Public Sector Advisory practice.

The transaction adds a talented roster of professionals in Washington, D.C., and other U.S. cities to Guidehouse. These professionals possess extensive experience providing federal, state and local governments with solutions in areas that include finance, human-capital management, information technology, data analytics and performance management.

“We are excited to welcome our new colleagues to Guidehouse, building on the strength of our model, continued innovation, and driving the best outcomes for our clients,” said Scott McIntyre, CEO of Guidehouse. “This transaction aligns to our strategy to expand expertise and capabilities in support of our clients’ most pressing challenges. With this strategic combination, we anticipate experiencing opportunities for both significant growth and advancement for our colleagues.”

Rumors of Grant Thornton breaking off the public sector practice have been floating around for years and Guidehouse was attached to said rumors even back then so it’s possible they’ve been sniffing around for some time. The last time we wrote about public sector was May 2020 when we heard grumbling of layoffs, er, trimming the folks not meeting their utilization goals.

We’ll update this post as more information comes in.

Update: We’ve received a copy of the internal email sent to Grant Thornton employees this afternoon on behalf of Seth Siegel, CEO; Muhammad Bhayat, Chairman, Partnership Board; Jim Peko, COO; and Carlos Otal, National Managing Partner, Public Sector. It appears in its entirety below.

Grant Thornton to divest Public Sector Advisory practice

Firm reaches agreement with Guidehouse, a leader in government services consulting

What: Grant Thornton has entered into an agreement to sell our Public Sector Advisory practice to Guidehouse, a leading global provider of consulting services for government and public sector clients, as well as regulated commercial industries.

Now what: We anticipate closing the transaction within 60 days and expect a seamless transition of our Public Sector Advisory team to Guidehouse.

Dear colleagues,

We are writing to let you know that our firm has reached an agreement to divest our Public Sector Advisory practice to Guidehouse, an acknowledged leader in the government advisory services business. A copy of the press release will be posted in our newsroom shortly. We anticipate a smooth transition of our Public Sector Advisory team to Guidehouse.

Since earlier this year, leaders across the firm have worked on evolving our growth strategy for our firm, which you heard about at weGT. The divestiture of our Public Sector Advisory practice is aligned with our strategy, as it will enable Grant Thornton to sharpen our focus on the firm’s integrated offerings, where we see significant growth opportunities moving forward in Audit, Tax and Advisory services across our portfolio. This will also provide additional capital to make meaningful organic and inorganic investments in talent, technology and other capabilities to provide even more value to our clients and our people.

This transaction is also a testament to the accomplishments of our Public Sector Advisory practice and the potential for further growth that Guidehouse believes can be achieved as part of a management consultancy focused on the government sector. Guidehouse is a firm that our Public Sector colleagues know well and one that affords broad opportunities for professional growth.

While we firmly believe this is a positive transaction for all, it is nonetheless difficult to part ways with valued colleagues with whom we’ve worked for many years. This is true for those of us who are departing – and those of us who will remain. Our collective support of our colleagues is paramount as they prepare for this transition.

Our Public Sector Advisory team is among the best in the world at what they do – they are consummate professionals, wonderful teammates and, for many of us, longstanding and treasured friends. We thank them for many years of tremendous service to our firm, our people and our clients.

We’ll continue to be in touch with further details regarding this transaction and as we continue to transform our firm for the future.