Mars & Co Europe at a Glance

The Buzz

  • "Excellent strategy boutique"
  • "Cultish"
  • "Interesting, unique"
  • "Small brand"

About Mars & Co Europe

Red planet sees green

Mars & Co. is an international strategy consulting firm that’s all about exclusivity.  The firm's "raison d'être", it says, is to pour all of its resources into a limited number of clients and to serve them, worldwide, on an exclusive basis.  Its founder and chairman, Dominique G. Mars, says this is the only way a consulting firm "of any consequence" can guarantee "fidelity" to its clients.

Many offices, one Mars

The stay-small-but-true firm employs approximately 250 consultants who work in six offices in Connecticut, California, London, Paris, Tokyo and Shanghai, although the firm operates under a "one-office" concept.  That means a client in San Francisco has as much right to draw on the Paris office's resources as does a French client. Chairman Mars, who founded the firm in 1979 after leaving The Boston Consulting Group, says he would ultimately like to employ 400 to 450 consultants with a portfolio of 30 to 40 clients.

Tough talk for tough times

Mars and Co’s clients, likely shaken by recent market events, can be reassured that their Martians mean to fight.  The firm's language, when it talks business, is a reminder that Mars was the name of the Roman god of war, likening markets to "battlefields" and its analysis to "ripping apart the economics and modus operandi of the industry".  It also promises to "dissect" the "enemy's forces", as well as market forces.

True to its stated intention of acting only in the best interests of its clients, Mars & Co keeps clients’ identities tightly guarded.  Only very occasionally does one happen to slip into the public eyeâ€"as it did early in 2008, when it emerged that none other than French President Nicolas Sarkozy had hired the firm to help develop criteria for "report cards" to be issued to all of his ministers.

The eight levels of Mars

Teamwork is a big deal at Mars & Co, but everyone has their own role to play in that team.  There are eight professional levels at the consultancy, which, in increasing order, are: associate consultant, senior associate consultant, consultant, senior consultant, project manager , vice president, senior vice president and executive vice president.  

Associate and senior associate consultants primarily do research and data management, and are hired for their strong research and analytical skills.  Via Mars & Co’s apprenticeship-style training program, new entrants can be promoted quickly to the next level and are always integrated as members of a project team.  Consultant-level employees are responsible for carrying out rigorous analytical tasks and for thinking out practical solutions to solve clients' business problems.  They work under senior consultants and project managers, who design and manage modules of projects so the projects are intellectually coherent and useful to clients.

Project managers not only lead project teams, but also are expected to train more junior staff while providing value-creating solutions for clients.  Vice presidents also work closely with project teams, and have additional responsibilities in client relationship development and concept development.

There is no predetermined promotion schedule at any of the eight levels.  As such, the consultancy prides itself on being a meritocracy.  The firm also notes that it never conducts lateral hiring.

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Mars & Co Europe

12-18 Grosvenor Gardens
London SW1W 0DH
Phone: 44 (0) 207 730 4040
Fax: 44 (0) 207 730 9665


  • Employer Type: Private
  • Chairman: Dominique G. Mars
  • 2009 Employees: 250