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Newton Acquires Magnetic

Newton Acquires Magnetic

Newton Acquires Magnetic to Bolster Strength in Design and Innovation

Newton, the strategic delivery consultancy, is excited to announce its acquisition of
Magnetic, an independent human-centred design and innovation company.

The transaction will see Magnetic’s 70+ designers and innovators join Newton’s
450+ consultants across the UK, with both companies’ skills adding depth and
breadth to their offerings to clients.

Magnetic will continue to be run as a separate business beyond the transaction and
for the foreseeable future, however, both companies will explore opportunities to
boost the impact they deliver to clients through partnership. Magnetic will continue to
operate under its existing name and branding.

Existing Foundations

Newton and Magnetic have previously worked in partnership for several large clients,
also collaborating on the steering groups of various joint projects. Accordingly, they
were aware of their similarities in working style and shared beliefs. The acquisition is
a natural next step that builds on common aspirations and a shared experience of
delivering exceptional client value.

The two companies make a good fit, with complementary skills portfolios, a mutual
impetus to disrupt the traditional consulting model, and a strong blend of commercial
innovation and creative ingenuity. Both are renowned for helping clients resolve
complex, intractable challenges blending a data-driven approach with human-centric
design and innovation.

Also, both are driven to give client organisations dramatic improvements in
performance, efficiency, and competitive edge. Both Newton and Magnetic have
strong credentials in the retail and consumer space, with a shared understanding of
consumer business dynamics.

Another common characteristic is that Newton and Magnetic both use a client-centric
approach that is industry agnostic​. This approach starts from first principles and is
tailored to every client situation. There are many more natural synergies between the
two businesses, ​which will be explored in the years ahead.

Design & Innovation

Magnetic, formed in 2021 from the merger of independent consultancies Fluxx and
magneticNorth, has thrived by applying a multidisciplinary and holistic approach to
create innovative, commercially successful products and services for multinationals,
government entities and fast-growing start-ups. An intensely collaborative client
engagement approach sees Magnetic teams uncover customer insights that lead to
the design of new products and services that address client problems.

With expertise in business design, design thinking, innovation, leadership
development, culture change, and building product-led communities, the company
continues to pursue a mission of creating better futures for businesses, people, and
the planet through design and innovation.

As a collective of people passionate about solving the world’s environmental and
social challenges, Magnetic attained B Corp certification in 2023.

Delivering through its combined hub of innovation and digital design, Magnetic has
seen a rapid increase in demand from organisations across a range of sectors,
including Google, HSBC, Mars, the BBC, Parliamentary Digital Service, adidas and
The Economist, amongst its partners.

Meaningful impact

In Newton’s case, success in the areas of healthcare, local and central government,
retail, defence and infrastructure, and a focus on translating strategic intent into
tangible actions and outcomes backed by a fee guarantee, have seen it maintain, a
25% growth rate YOY over 20 years. Newton has worked with more than 100 public
sector organisations in the UK, on the nation's most significant defence 
programmes and with many of the country’s largest retailers.

As a behind-the-scenes force for creating lasting value within large organisations,
Newton builds strong partnerships with client teams, often with a low profile but a
critical role in multimillion-pound change and transformation programmes.

Newton’s approach to strategic delivery is uniquely data-driven, forensically detailed,
digitally enabled and human-powered. The company’s purpose is unlocking
complexity for meaningful impact, and it thrives in highly complex, high-stakes
environments. Newton orchestrates programmes that keep citizens, consumers, and
taxpayers safer, healthier, better served, and benefiting from organisations, systems
and processes that run more efficiently and deliver better outcomes and greater

The company remains deeply invested in the impact of its work through an unusually
client-centric engagement and commercial model, which sees it fully guarantee all its
fees. Newton regularly appears on the rankings of the most desirable companies in
the UK for university graduates, with 14,000 applicants contesting 100 new positions
in the 2023 academic year.

A Critical Juncture

The acquisition by Newton of Magnetic comes at a critical moment in each
company’s respective history. Both are rapidly growing; after more than 20 years in
the UK, Newton is poised to broaden its reach into sectors where it already has a
substantial presence, while also extending its offer into new industry sectors and
international geographies.

“We’re very excited about the new capabilities and capacity for design and
innovation that Magnetic brings to Newton,” says Managing Partner of Newton
Europe, Steven Phillips.

“Since our first meeting, it was apparent that our respective leadership teams and
cultures have much in common,” Phillips continued. “The better we got to know each
other, the more apparent it became that we are both motivated by similar things:
curiosity and passion to unlock complexity, an optimism about the future and our
ability to contribute towards it, and a determination to leave a meaningful impact with
our clients, and within society.”

“We believe in the power of design to accelerate progress and create positive,
sustainable impact,” said Jenny Burns, CEO of Magnetic. “In Newton, we’ve found
kindred spirits with strongly complementary skills that will combine to deliver a more
holistic approach for more impactful outcomes. We also believe in designing our
future with optimism. It’s a mindset that begins within us and has a ripple effect on
the world at large.

“We were convinced that we’d found the right fit with Newton when it became
apparent that both companies shared so many similarities – high growth rates, big
ambitions to create positive change at scale, and cultures underpinned by strong
values. We each have parallel but equally effective approaches to solving client
challenges, and we both value the building of close relationships with our clients –
relationships that provide the fuel for extraordinary breakthroughs and enduringly
positive outcomes.”

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Written by Newton and Magnetic.
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