October 22, 2021 – Korn Ferry has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Lucas Group. The transaction, which is subject to customary closing conditions, is expected to close on November 1. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. Lucas Group gives Korn Ferry professional search and contracting expertise which is expected to enhance the firm’s search portfolio.
“This combination is the right move at the right time,” said Korn Ferry CEO Gary D. Burnison. “Today’s workscape is being transformed before our eyes – people working anywhere, everywhere and at any time. Professionals are on the move, Boomers are retiring and career nomads are looking for change – early and often. We are seizing this opportunity to help clients find the right talent who are highly agile with specialized skills and expertise to help them drive superior performance,” added Mr. Burnison.
“We are pleased to find the ideal strategic home at Korn Ferry,” said Randy Marmon, president and CEO of Lucas Group. “We are excited about what the future will bring from this acquisition in terms of anticipated synergistic offerings for our clients as well as career opportunities for our employees.”
Founded in 1970 and headquartered in Atlanta, Lucas Group is a professional search and contract staffing firm, targeting middle market businesses. Key areas of focus span specializations such as accounting & finance, human resources, information technology, legal, military transition, sales & marketing, and supply chain & operations.
ZRG Acquires Walking the Talk
Executive search firm ZRG has acquired Walking the Talk, a consulting and advisory firm focused on culture transformation. Hunt Scanlon Ventures facilitated the introduction and transaction between both organizations. Walking the Talk, headquartered in Amsterdam, specializes in enhancing performance results by aligning culture with strategy. Since the company was established 11 years ago, culture has landed firmly on the agenda of most executive teams and boards of directors.
Korn Ferry is a Los Angeles-headquartered executive recruiter and leadership consultant and the largest globally and in the Americas as ranked by Hunt Scanlon Media. The firm’s 8,600 colleagues serve clients in more than 50 countries.
“Acquisitions continue to make big news in our sector, and for good reason,” said Scott A. Scanlon, CEO of Hunt Scanlon Ventures. “We remain a highly fragmented industry and that makes staffing and recruiting firms ripe for consolidation. But more than that, we are seeing a growing capacity problem surfacing across the recruiting domain. Assignment volume has been rapidly expanding and with that has come the need for a better playbook to manage and effectively scale growth. The seven deals we facilitated this year all had that one common denominator. And eight others in the pipeline share the same theme.” This transaction, he said, allows Lucas Group access to a much broader platform and more resources.
Since its launch 18 months ago, Hunt Scanlon Ventures has offered a full spectrum of critical solutions, including growth strategy, investment, merger & acquisition, and exit planning. The firm is launching a growth advisory unit later this year to focus on pre- and post-M&A integration consulting, data strategy, and talent intelligence & analytics.
The addition of Lucas Group to Korn Ferry’s broader talent acquisition portfolio – spanning executive search, recruitment process outsourcing, and professional search – is expected to accelerate Korn Ferry’s ability to capture additional share of this significant market.
Acquisitions and consolidations continue to make news in the recruiting industry, with a number of notable purchases in recent months. Here is a sampling from the Hunt Scanlon Media archives:
Orlando, FL-headquartered healthcare-focused search firm Kirby Bates Associates (KBA) and Tyler & Company have merged business operations. The unified organization will operate under the Kirby Bates Associates brand. “Tyler & Company offers an exciting opportunity for Kirby Bates to strengthen its service and scope in healthcare executive leadership,” said Melissa A. Fitzpatrick, president of Kirby Bates Associates and Tyler & Company. “With its range of high-profile clients and service expertise, Tyler & Company’s complementary offerings are highly aligned to Kirby Bates’ strategy to lead the market by expanding services throughout the C-suite and across the continuum of care.”
ZRG has made a major move into the sports, entertainment & media sectors by acquiring Turnkey Search. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed. Renamed TurnkeyZRG, all Turnkey staff and assets merge into ZRG and the firm will continue to be led by Len Perna, the founder, chairman, and CEO of Turnkey. Turnkey will now adopt ZRG’s tech-enabled, data-driven approach to the search process which it says will give the newly merged firm a competitive edge in the hunt for sports, media, and entertainment talent. Larry Hartmann, CEO of ZRG, called the deal a “blockbuster acquisition.”
A group of private investors led by majority partner CTR Group, a Virginia-based, family-owned employment services firm, has completed its acquisition of RM Nephew & Associates, an executive search firm headquartered in Boston, MA. Hunt Scanlon Ventures facilitated the introduction and the transaction. RM Nephew and Associates, with offices in Boston and New York, offers partnership-driven solutions to business leadership and recruitment challenges for a premier list of clients, primarily in the healthcare, technology, and professional services sectors.
Riviera Partners, a recruitment provider specializing in C-level engineering, product and design leader placements, has acquired Arete Partners. The Arete Partners team will form the foundation of Riviera Ventures and build upon its focus on Seed-to-B stage VC-backed startups. Eóin O’ Toole, co-founder and CEO of Arete Partners, will lead the new Riviera Ventures unit. Over the course of the past six years, Arete Partners has placed executive talent for Seed-to-B stage companies with “an understanding that the earliest leadership hires are of critical importance if startups are to reach their full potential,” Riviera Partners said in a statement.
Caldwell has signed an agreement to acquire IQTalent Partners. “For 50 years, Caldwell has been connecting clients with transformational talent. With this merger, we are setting our sights on transforming the world of talent,” said John Wallace, chief executive officer. “IQTalent Partners’ unique service model and innovative use of technology, paired with Caldwell’s expertise, network and resources will allow us to serve our clients in a more integrated fashion and allow us to have a greater impact on their long-term success, which remains our primary mandate.” Founded in 2009, IQTalent Partners provides talent acquisition solutions to 300 corporations from Fortune 500s to startups across a wide range of industries and functions throughout North America, Europe, Australia, Asia, and South America.
Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; and Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media