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Deloitte Acquires TCi

Addition of benchmarking and advisory firm gives consultant an operational edge.

Deloitte Consulting (New York) has broadened its offerings to the insurance industry by acquiring Cresskill, N.J.-based TCi Consulting & Research, which conducts benchmarking technology and operational surveys, and provides advisory services to the insurance industry. TCi will function as an autonomous unit within Deloitte, and its leadership and staff will remain intact.

Deloitte and TCi have enjoyed a long-standing relationship, and the idea of joining forces had been entertained for some years, according to Joe Guastella, principal, financial services industry, Deloitte Consulting. "We were getting focused around the idea of being the adviser to our accounts, to senior executives," he relates. "A capability we thought would be important to bring to the table would be to have insight around the operational side of things."

TCi's reputation in the industry made the case for its operation within Deloitte as an independent unit, according to Guastella. TCi will continue to work under its current branding before the name is phased out within 12 to 18 months, he says. Guastella emphasizes that even after the transition is complete, the unit will interact with its clients with the same degree of confidentiality that has always prevailed. The only circumstance under which any other segment of Deloitte would have access to client information, Guastella insists, would be "if we got express written permission from the client to help them dig through the findings to offer further insights."

Nevertheless, clients will benefit from the contribution Deloitte can make to TCi's continuing work, Guastella contends. Given the resources that Deloitte can contribute, he says, clients will see "a more finished set of tool sets to collect data, and on the back end a look and feel that has more to say about what that data is showing."

Being able to continue doing what TCi has traditionally done was a key factor in accepting Deloitte's acquisition offer, according to Jack Tyniec, managing director, TCi. Other overtures amounted to "companies looking for us to essentially give them our Rolodex and sell their products to our clients," Tyniec remarks. "We felt there was a lot of value in what we bring to the industry and we wanted to continue doing that."

Adding TCi to its offering provides Deloitte with a novel "nuts-and-bolts" presence that can bring greater value to its clients, according to Craig Weber, a Boston-based analyst with Celent Communications. "Carriers have plenty of projects, but a lot of them are very operationally focused, meaning it's not about new e-business or distribution strategies - it's about executing on those strategies," he comments. "For example, benchmarking and staff modeling in the contact and service centers is a hot topic; insurers are interested in knowing how many service staff they should have for their book of business, and that's the kind of thing that TCi has been involved in."

On The Net

Anthony O'Donnell has covered technology in the insurance industry since 2000, when he joined the editorial staff of Insurance & Technology. As an editor and reporter for I&T and the InformationWeek Financial Services of TechWeb he has written on all areas of information ... View Full Bio

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