Slalom Consulting launches Canadian expansion with Toronto office

20 May 2016 Consulting.ca

Seattle-based professional services firm Slalom Consulting recently expanded into Canada with the opening of an office in Toronto, its 22nd hub globally.

With nearly 4,000 consultants and revenue of more than $550 million, Slalom Consulting is one of the larger management and technology consultancies in North America. The advisory firm, founded in 2001 in Seattle, spent its first 13 years building the business in the US – growing annual revenue to $480 million in 2014. In the summer of 2014 the consultancy went international, opening an office in London. The London operation, headed by Alex Qatsha – formerly of Unisys, Accenture, and Deloitte – has enjoyed a growing track record for success with UK and European clients.

In January, the consultancy expanded into its second non-US market, opening a new office in Canada’s most populous city. Slalom's recently opened Canadian office is located in downtown Toronto and is led by Wayne Ingram, who joined the firm in the summer of 2015. As office head, Ingram is responsible for managing the setup and growth of Slalom’s Canadian operation. Prior to joining the firm in 2015, Ingram worked at Accenture for 25+ years, reaching the rank of Managing Director. During his long tenure at Accenture, Ingram held multiple other leadership roles in the firm’s North American and European offices, including Global Managing Director for Enterprise Architecture and Application Strategy, and head of Accenture Canada’s Technology Practice.

Slalom Consulting launches Canadian expansion with Toronto office

Over the past months, Slalom Consulting has seen its team in Toronto increase in size, driven by a rapidly expanding Canadian client base. The Canadian office currently consists of a team of around 60 consultants and expects to grow further in the second half of 2016, in step with the launch of new projects.

When asked how the firm is able to stand out from the consulting crowd in Canada, Ingram responded, “In a global market where innovation is increasingly important to keep and stay ahead of the competition, Canadian companies need to quickly develop solutions and bring them to market. Slalom helps clients accelerate this process with an agile approach to problem solving and a proven ability to innovate and execute.”

The consultancy can – according to Ingram – particularly leverage its business and technology experience in the US, building on the foundation of award-winning partnerships with solution providers like Amazon Web Services, Microsoft, Salesforce, and Tableau.

Looking further ahead, Slalom has set its sights on further penetration into Canada, highlighting Vancouver, Calgary, Ottawa and Montreal as potential targets for future expansion.

“Slalom has the agility, energy, and culture of a start-up combined with the resources, reach, and scale of a global company, allowing us to think big, act fast, and see results,” commented Ingram. “I believe it is critical to drive innovation here in Canada. I know what we are capable of and that is why I am passionate about the freedom Slalom gives to its employees and brings to its clients to not only solve a problem, but implement the solution.”

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French tech consultancy Axionable opens AI research lab in Montreal

11 April 2019 Consulting.ca

Paris-based Axionable, a consulting firm specializing in enterprise data and artificial intelligence strategy, has announced the opening of a research lab in Montréal. The lab will hire 50 new employees over the next two years.

"Opening a facility in Montréal was a natural choice for us," Gwendal Bihan, Axionable CEO, said at the World Summit AI conference in the Quebec metropolis. "The city is now one of the top global centres of artificial intelligence (AI) research. We are eager to work alongside the world's most renowned researchers and to be part of a booming ecosystem that includes industry leaders as well as promising start-ups."

Axionable was founded in 2016, and has approximately 50 employees across offices in Paris and Lille. The firm provides high-demand consulting services in data analysis and AI, with expertise in image and video analysis, natural language processing, and prediction. Axionable also delivers a full range of support services, from needs identification to performance-improving AI solutions. The firm supports clients across financial services, media, distribution, and industrials, and has worked with notable organizations such as Michelin and Crédit Agricole.

French tech consultancy Axionable opens AI research lab in Montreal

"We are undertaking this international expansion phase not long after the company was founded, and it would not have been possible without the support of organizations like Montréal International, Investissement Québec, and Business France,” Bihan said.

Montréal is a burgeoning hub for AI, with firms such as McKinsey’s advanced analytics company QuantumBlack recently moving into the city. Montreal’s world-class AI research is centred around McGill University and l’Université de Montréal, as well as the Montréal Institute for Learning Algorithms which was cofounded by the two educational institutions.

"Quite a number of foreign companies are investing in the area,” Hubert Bolduc, president and CEO of Montréal International, the city’s economic development agency, said. “The team has supported over 30 AI projects in the past two years, totalling $500 million. Montréal stands out not only due to its concentration of deep learning researchers, but also by how much consideration it gives to the social and ethical impacts of AI."

Axionable has already started the recruitment process for its Canadian AI lab, searching for experts in automatic learning, deep learning, information technology, and communication. The lab will work on defining and implementing AI and data strategies for clients in North America and Europe.

"This new lab will provide further stimulus for the technological revolution taking place in Québec and create a great many highly specialized jobs,” Pierre Gabriel Côté, Investissement Québec president and CEO, said. “We are proud to have played a role in showcasing the advantages of choosing Montréal for this key player in the AI industry and to have provided help and guidance with investing here."