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Astek takes over Riversen


There has been another move in the engineering sector. French engineering giant Astek has announced the acquisition of a majority stake in Riversen, a specialist in engineering consultancy for the construction, industry, infrastructure, environment and transport sectors. The experts at AURIS Finance, a consultancy specialising in mergers and acquisitions, explain this merger.

Now operating on five continents, Astek is pursuing its expansion strategy. In January 2024, the group acquired Riversen, a Lyon-based engineering company with 350 employees and a turnover of €24 million. This acquisition strengthens Astek’s Resources, Energy & Infrastructure division, which accounts for 10% of the group’s turnover.

Reaching a critical size

Since its inception in 1988, Astek has held a unique position, combining industry expertise with IT services capabilities to meet the consulting and support needs of large corporations seeking to outsource their R&D projects. Over the years, other companies have positioned themselves in this niche. These include Capgemini, which acquired Altran in 2021, Atos, and Infosys. To stand out in a highly competitive market largely captured by the behemoths, Astek is striving to grow while maintaining a reasonable market size to attract a mid-market customer base. Astek now employs nearly 6,000 people, up from less than half that number in 2017. By comparison, a company like Capgemini employs 40,000 people in France and more than 300,000 worldwide.

A turnover of €1 billion by 2027

In recent years, the group has pursued a strategy of targeted acquisitions to build up specific areas of expertise.  In the summer of 2023, Astek acquired BES (Business and Engineering Solution), an engineering specialist catering for major groups in the energy, medical, automotive, rail and aerospace sectors. The acquisition gives Astek a foothold in Belgium and sixty new employees. BES has a turnover of €6 million. A few days after acquiring Riversen, Astek established a key presence in India and enhanced its position in the US market by acquiring Simelabs, a software engineering business.

To date, the group’s presence in North America has been concentrated mainly in Canada. With Simelabs, Astek is also gaining a foothold in India, allowing the group to optimise its commercial positioning.

Astek’s development strategy is to pursue an acquisition policy targeting mid-market companies. These acquisitions enable Astek to extend its geographical reach, while acquiring the talent and innovation it needs to grow. The group’s ambition is to achieve a turnover of €1 billion and 14,000 employees by 2027.

Our experts at your side

Despite an uncertain macroeconomic environment, the engineering sector continues to grow. In 2023, engineering consultancies recorded growth of 6.5%, following an 8% increase in 2022.

To win new markets, the sector’s giants are positioning themselves around companies with a strong local presence. Mid-sized companies in the sector with growing portfolios are now being targeted for acquisition. AURIS Finance has a dedicated engineering practice.

Whatever your project: sale or acquisition, our experts are at your side.

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#Engineering & New Technologies