KPMG Ireland buys construction consulting firm KMCS

Irish construction activity growth eased in March amid heightened inflation

KPMG in Ireland has acquired Dublin-based construction project and cost consultancy firm KMCS for an undisclosed sum.

Founded in 1954, KMCS provides services in the areas of cost and project management in Ireland and overseas. KMCS's staff of 35 will be fully integrated within KPMG, and the company's managing director, Nigel Spence, will lead the new business unit, KPMG said in a statement.

KMCS has consulted on a wide range of projects in Ireland and abroad, and clients include Facebook, Stripe, Primark, Westridge Real Estate, Riot Games and Fiserv.

The company, which is based in Ballsbridge in Dublin, will relocate to KPMG's offices at Stokes Place, Dublin, in the middle of this year.

"We believe that the acquisition of KMCS is a great opportunity, representing another component of our growth strategy," said Seamus Hand, managing partner of KPMG in Ireland.

“This transaction does just that by combining the deep expertise of the KMCS team with KPMG’s capabilities, experience and client base across a number of industry sectors. As Ireland continues to attract high levels of foreign investment this is a timely acquisition which will facilitate investors when considering the allocation of capital investment in Ireland.”

Mr Spence said the deal "provides really exceptional opportunities for our combined business and our extended client base".

Soaring prices

News of the deal comes as figures from BNP Paribas Real Estate Ireland showed that growth in construction activity slowed in March from the previous month, likely reflecting the impact of soaring prices on demand.

The headline seasonally-adjusted BNP Paribas Real Estate Ireland Construction Total Activity Index declined to 53.9 in March from 58.4 in February, but remained above the 50 threshold that signals expansion. While housing and commercial activity rose last month, that of civil engineering dropped for the first time in five months.

More than 83 per cent of construction companies that participated in the survey said their input costs had risen over the course of the month.

"There were widespread reports of higher fuel prices, while material shortages and the conflict in Ukraine added to inflationary pressures," BNP Paribas Real Estate Ireland said.

“Meanwhile, the conflict in Ukraine, higher transport costs and material shortages all added to pressure on supply chains. Lead times on the delivery of inputs lengthened substantially, with the rate of deterioration getting worse for the first time in five months.”