Big name consultancies get new global leaders in 2019

30 January 2019

As the first month of the year draws to a close, already three of the world’s foremost global consultancies have named new chiefs and leaders to take over now or in the months ahead; EY, Accenture and Mercer

While the companies and circumstances diverge in certain respects, three of the world’s largest and most prominent consulting firms have already so far this year elevated or elected new global leaders; Martine Ferland as Mercer’s next President and CEO; Carmine Di Sibio to take over as head of EY; and David Rowland, named Accenture’s interim chief following the resignation of Pierre Nanterme for health reasons.

In the most recent announcement, Martine Ferland has been appointed to take the helm at Mercer – one of the world’s leading human capital consultancies – from the beginning of March, replacing incumbent CEO Julio Portalatin who has held the top role since 2012 and will now join Mercer parent Marsh & McLennan as a vice president. Ferland has been with the firm for eight years, currently serving as its Group President.

“Martine is a talented executive who possesses broad global experience and a proven record of success.  Her deep understanding of our business and clients, and more than 30 years of experience across the health, wealth and career spectrum, has uniquely prepared her for the challenge,” said Dan Glaser, CEO and President of Marsh & McLennan – alongside Oliver Wyman, also home also to insurance brokerage risk management firm Marsh, which recently launched a dedicated China desk in Dubai.Big name consultancies get new global leaders in 2019

Just one week previous, prior to the commencement of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Big Four professional services firm Ernst & Young announced Camine Di Sibio as its newly elected Global Chairman and CEO following current CEO Mark Weinberger’s decision to step down at the beginning of July, two years into his second four-year term. A noted driver of innovation at EY, Di Sibio presently serves as the firm’s Global Managing Partner - Client Service, originally joining EY in 1985.

“Carmine is an outstanding and inclusive leader who has a foundation in audit and in serving the largest EY clients,” Weinberger said of his experienced incoming successor. “He is a leader who understands the importance of diverse and inclusive teams, and he knows how to engage people to reach their full potential. I believe the organisation has made an exceptional choice, and Carmine is the right EY Global Chairman and CEO in these transformative times.”

Meanwhile, earlier this month, professional services juggernaut Accenture named former Chief Financial Officer and 35-year company veteran David Rowland as its interim CEO effective immediately in the wake of Pierre Nanterme resignation due to health reasons, with Nanterme having been at the helm since 2011. While Rowland only takes over in the interim for now, his previous position has already been filled by former Finance Operations Managing Director KC McClure.

“I know that David’s significant involvement in developing and delivering our growth strategy to rotate our business to new, high-growth areas of digital, cloud and security, and his tenure as a highly respected senior leader and developer of talent, will make this transition seamless,” Nanterme said, noting that for his entire 36-year career, the now Accenture advisor has “never been more confident” in the firm’s “business strategy, leadership team and people”.

Elsewhere at the top

With all of McKinsey, A.T. Kearney and Bain & Company welcoming new global leaders in just the past twelve month – Kevin Sneader as Global Managing Partner at McKinsey and Alex Liu and Manny Maceda in the corresponding roles at Bain and A.T. Kearney – there is still some potential movement elsewhere at the top of the consulting tree in the year ahead, including the as to the expectation that long-serving Cognizant CEO Francisco D’Souza will step down some time in 2019.

Elsewhere among the Big Four and leading strategy and management consultancies, Deloitte Global CEO Punit Renjen will be up for four-year reelection this year, while KPMG and PwC heads Bill Thomas and Bob Moritz will enter into their third and fourth years respectively. The BCG partnership, under the firm’s ‘one partner, one vote’ policy, reelected Rich Lesser for a third term as CEO last year, as did Roland Berger’s partnership for Charles-Edouard Bouée’s second term at the top. Of the biggest ten or so firms by consulting revenue, Capgemini head Paul Hermelin is perhaps the longest serving, holding the CEO role since 2001.


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Carlos Ghosn's daughters get their career starts in strategy consulting

16 April 2019

With the Ghosn affair taking yet another twist, this time concerning allegations in Oman, the world’s media remains gripped.

A highly celebrated figure in Lebanon, the case of ex-Nissan and now ex-Renault head Carlos Ghosn has captivated the media round the world, with his re-arrest and detainment in Japan on further embezzlement charges last week – this time concerning allegations in Oman – delivering the latest twist in the saga. For his part, Ghosn continues to deny the charges, labeling the latest allegations of financial impropriety as “outrageous and arbitrary”.

Much of the media fascination stems from Ghosn’s remarkable story. Born to Lebanese immigrants in Brazil, Ghosn spent much of his youth in Lebanon before moving to Paris to pursue an engineering degree – and in almost no time arriving at the very top of the global automotive industry as a feted turn-around specialist, having rescued both Renault and Nissan from probable ruin. The other factor; a cultivated lifestyle of celebrity glamour.

Front and centre in that image was Ghosn’s young family, including a son Anthony and three daughters – Caroline, Maya and Nadine – who have all grown into their own spotlight in the international business and entrepreneurial worlds. And in line with that A-list background, all three of his daughters got their career starts at the crème de la crème of the strategy and management consulting world; prestigious MBB firms McKinsey & Company and BCG.The Ghosn family affair with the international consulting sector  The eldest Ghosn daughter, Caroline, joined McKinsey in 2007 following a BA in International Relations at Stamford University – before founding professional career network Levo in 2011 with three of her McKinsey associates. Her husband, Nicholas Flanders, CEO and co-founder of carbon reduction tech-company Opus 12, (and former COO of Levo), is likewise an alumnus of McKinsey – serving for three and a half years alongside Ghosn in the firm’s New York office.

Carlos Ghosn’s second daughter got her start at Boston Consulting Group.  A regonised name in luxury fashion as the founder and creative director of Nadine Ghosn Fine Jewelry, her brand counts and Beyoncé and the recently deceased fashion icon Karl Largerfeld among its celebrity clientele. At BCG, Nadine, who also graduated Stamford, served as an associate in the firm’s luxury and consumer goods practice before joining a management programme at Hermès.

Like her eldest sister, Ghosn’s youngest daughter Maya joined McKinsey’s New York office – spending over three years there as an engagement manager before departing in 2016. Maya is now Manager, Housing Affordability for the Chan-Zuckerberg Initiative, founded by Mark Zuckerberg and Pricilla Chan to promote social equality. Incidentally, Facebook’s Sheryl Sandberg, a former McKinsey consultant, has been a mentor to Caroline and also founded, where Maya first started out as an intern.

Carlos Ghosn’s son Anthony – who has now been embroiled in his father’s affair with accusations of money being funneled via Oman toward his financial services start-up, Shogun (where he is CEO but has not been accused of any direct involvement) – didn’t get his break at an MBB, but his step-brother, Anthony Marshi, the son of Carlos Ghosn’s second wife Carole Nahas, is a partner with BCG in New York according to French newspaper Le Figaro.