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BDO expands advisory business through acquisition of VICO Research & Consulting GmbH

29 June 2023

  • IT data analysis experts in product and quality management
  • Use of AI-based language models that utilise very large amounts of text and data from social media and the internet
  • BDO clients will be able to obtain AI-based evaluations of external data and analyses of internal data from a single source, and thus better approaches to solutions
  • BDO service areas to be expanded to include AI-based services

BDO AG Wirtschaftsprüfungsgesellschaft has acquired VICO Research & Consulting GmbH, which specialises in IT data analysis, market research, social media monitoring and review monitoring.

The company, which was founded in 2005, has its headquarters in Leinfelden-Echterdingen and employs around 60 people at three locations, and is particularly in demand in the automotive and consumer electronics industries. VICO has developed an AI-based technology for this purpose, which identifies, analyses and presents relevant information and data sources from social media and the internet. In this way, millions of data, texts and information can be processed into order-relevant key performance indicators (KPI) and summarised in a report. VICO's customers include VW, Deutsche Telekom, Bosch and Daimler as well as Sharp Consumer Electronics.

"With the acquisition of VICO, we are significantly expanding our digital consulting portfolio and opening up new consulting fields in the area of customer experience," says BDO board member Parwäz Rafiqpoor. "In addition to its technology, VICO brings extensive expertise in the areas of big data, data analytics, AI, coding and consulting. We combine this with our own consulting expertise and thus offer our customers valuable insights. In this way, AI becomes real and tangible."

The potential applications of AI in companies in all industries are diverse, and BDO Advisory Partner Frank Wiethoff is also convinced that the acquisition of VICO comes at exactly the right time: "We are at the beginning of a technological leap. Learning algorithms will revolutionise the way companies work. Together with VICO, we will accompany companies on this path."

VICO will initially continue to operate under its own name. The current managing directors Marc Trömel and Philipp Tiedt will become partners of BDO. "Together with BDO, we are in a position to further advance our innovative products and developments as well as to expand into new industries and areas. We will benefit from BDO's many years of experience in the market and gain access to further resources, especially to accelerate our developments in the field of AI," says Philipp Tiedt, Managing Director of VICO Research & Consulting GmbH.

Marc Trömel, also VICO Managing Director, adds: "The improvements and future expansions of our services will of course benefit not only our client base but also BDO's clients, who will thus gain access to innovative possibilities for data preparation and analysis."