Navigant Consulting Inc.
) recently announced its acquisition of Easton Associates (Easton)
- an international consulting firm dealing with companies from the
life sciences industry. This acquisition should bolster Navigant's
presence in the highly competitive and regulated life sciences
industry. Easton brings more than 40 consulting professionals to
several of Navigant's existing locations including New York,
Chicago and London, forming a team of around 90 professionals.
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Founded in 2000, Easton provides clients business solutions related
to strategy development, opportunity assessment, due diligence,
product planning and more. Years-old association with large
pharmaceutical firms also speaks of its ability in the concerned
areas of action. Hence, we believe that the acquisition fits in
with Navigant's product portfolio and is in sync with its key
long-term strategy. These companies can derive substantial synergy
from the deal as both operate in the same vertical.
Opportunities associated with healthcare reforms continue to drive
demand as the industry seeks expertise to improve profitability and
address increasing regulatory pressure for compliance. In the
second quarter of 2012, the Healthcare segment grew 13.1% year over
year driven by strong demand in the field of healthcare as well as
life science practices.
Navigant's previous acquisitions in health care like EthosPartners
Healthcare Management and Paragon Health coupled with the recent
one are expected to enhance and help achieve its operational goals
as well as augment opportunities associated with health care
reforms. Further, increased complexities in pharmaceutical,
biotech, medical device and diagnostic industries should be
resolved more efficiently.
Since 2005, Navigant has been on an acquisition binge to boost its
expertise in all aspects of its business. It acquired A.W.
Hutchison & Associates and the Canadian forensic accounting and
litigation consulting practices of Kroll Inc. in 2005, Precept
Programme Management in 2006, Abros Enterprise Limited Bluepress
Limited, all the assets of AMDC Corp. and Troika (U.K.) Limited in
2007, Chicago Partners LLC and The Bard Group LLC in 2008, Morse
PLC's Investment Management Consulting Business and Summit Blue
Consulting in 2009, Empiris LLC, Daylight Forensic & Advisory
LLC and EthosPartners Healthcare Management Group in 2010, Ignited
Discovery in July 2011, Paragon Health in October 2011 and Pike
Research in July 2012.
Navigant currently retains a Zacks #3 Rank, which translates into a
short-term Hold rating. However, we are maintaining our long-term
Outperform rating on the stock. Some of the competitors of Navigant