While the pandemic has forced some peers to pause hiring and expansion, Booz Allen said it’s looking to grow on an earnings call on Friday.
The government-focused consultancy said it added more than 200 people in the last three months and it will keep hiring for the rest of the year.
Booz Allen is also looking to buy other companies, particularly technology companies to help fill in its gaps for clients.
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As the pandemic forces companies across industries to pause hiring, Booz Allen is in growth mode, executives said on an earnings call on Friday.
The pandemic hasn’t slowed down new contracts to the government-focused consultancy, so it’s looking to add people and new businesses, CEO Horacio Rozanski said on the call to discuss fiscal first-quarter results.
Booz Allen, which has about 27,400 employees, added 208 people in the three months ending June 30. Over the last year, the company increased headcount by about 1,000, and it’s recently seen below-normal attrition, Rozanski said.
“For the year, we remain in a growth posture and intend to increase headcount to meet demand,” he said.
Other consultancies are focused on maintaining or reducing headcount as client work dries up during the pandemic.
Accenture cut low performers in June, and more similar reductions could come. CEO Julie Sweet said on Accenture’s earnings call that the firm is promoting and hiring fewer people, Business Insider previously reported. And Deloitte told staff in late May that it would cut about 5% of its 50,000 workers.
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Unlike other consultancies that do short-term work with companies, nonprofits, and other groups, Booz Allen works largely with the government. Its multi-year contracts help to insulate the firm from immediate economic shocks.
This year, Booz Allen’s major contracts have included a $147 million, five-year IT support contract with the National Institutes of Health; a $113 million, 10-year cybersecurity contract with the Securities and Exchange Commission; and a $178 million contract to modernize the Navy’s GPS systems.
Booz Allen says it’s also looking to grow by buying other businesses, particularly those with technology that fills gaps for clients. The company’s past acquisitions include the 2017 purchases of Aquilent, which works with the federal government, and cybersecurity-focused business Morphick.
Booz Allen had $621 million in cash as of June 30, and Rozanski said he’s looking to “unleash our balance sheet.”
“We’re looking at opportunities in the market very assertively,” Rozanski said. “The pipeline is building nicely … we are prepared to take advantage of volatility in asset prices and ensure that we’re capturing what we need.”
The company typically evaluates about 100 acquisition opportunities annually, and it’s on pace for the same number this year, chief financial officer Lloyd Howell, Jr. said.
Overall, the company booked $1.96 billion in revenue during the quarter, up 7.2% year-on-year.
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Source:: Business Insider