Ina Kjaer and Maggie Brereton have unveiled plans to launch a new firm, to be named EOS Deal Advisory (Eos was the Greek goddess of the dawn). The two names will be familiar. These are the former KPMG partners who resigned earlier this year in protest over the handling of complaints about workplace bullying.

In a statement, the two said: “We are building a global business that advises clients on their deals bringing a different way of doing deals – focused on the future value, leveraging technology and senior experience. Our ‘Eyes Wide Open’ approach to deals focuses on how the future state of the business will be delivered in real life. The time for a new competitor is right – after 20 years of limited change:

  • People want a different way of working with greater flexibility in an inclusive culture.
  • Clients need a different way of doing deals so they deliver the value expected – for the last 20 years only one third of deals have created value. 
  • Technology and data are now available that enhance the level of insight into value creation opportunities.”

Having resigned in February, the pair have now completed their ‘gardening leave’ and with some 40 years of experience between them are now recruiting for their new venture in which they are targeting a zero gender pay gap right from the off.

In an interview with The Financial Times, Brereton said: “We don’t want to be a new KPMG, a mini-me.” Kjaer said: “The business will allow minorities and women who walked out of the [deal advisory] market to feel like they want to work in it. Many feel like they cannot participate in this market. We will bring proper diversity into this market.” 

“We have done deals for 20 years and in that time not a lot has changed — it is still the case that roughly only a third of deals add value,” said Brereton. “You see a lot of theoretical assumptions being made without somebody separating fact from fiction.”