Improvements in the health of the Spanish economy has helped its consulting market accelerate growth to 7.6 per cent – taking the total market value to €1.42billion in 2017. This is the fastest growth rate the market has experienced for five years.

As pressure on budgets eased and clients took the opportunity to transform neglected business models and processes – digital work took off. Data & analytics and robotics demand continued to mature, while AI remains at an experimental stage.

These figures are published today (1st May 2018) in a new report from Source Global Research, the leading research and strategy firm for the global management consulting industry.

The Source report says that despite the strong growth, the market may yet be impacted by the after effects of the Catalan referendum, and price pressure continues to blight the market thanks to the lack of large clients and the resulting intense competition for work. However, Source points out that with many clients still pursuing growth opportunities outside Spain’s borders, some are taking their consultants with them, secure in the knowledge that they are unlikely to be paying an overly high price for their services.

Zoë Stumpf, Head of Consulting Market Trends at Source Global Research said:
“The consulting market in Spain really is going from strength to strength with both consulting firms and their clients now embracing the opportunities presented by new technologies, such as robotics, to change the way they operate.

Financial services and retail were the only sectors to experience double-digit growth in 2017. In banking, the increasing maturity of Fintech’s in Spain pushed incumbent players to improve their use of technology in their engagement with customers, while in retail, bricks-and-mortar clients invested in omnichannel to fight back against online-only competitors.”

Fabio Troiani, Co-Founder and CEO of Business Integration Partners, added:
“2017 was a good year, especially compared to the last few. Generally speaking, demand has increased across all sectors, with everything driven by interest in transformative technologies.”

Although technology is the biggest service line by some distance, concern from clients newly exposed to the need for cybersecurity, as well as more traditional challenges around compliance, pushed risk & regulatory growth into double figure growth.

Type A firms, led by the Big Four, posted the strongest growth in 2017—pushing towards 9 per cent—but their market share in Spain was still less than half of the technology firms, which also recorded growth of more than 8 per cent.

Source concludes that growth rates in 2018 look unlikely to match 2017 as a certain amount of pent-up demand dissipates together with concerns about the impact of the Catalan referendum. But, growth will remain strong across the board, driven by persistent demand around digital.

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