Established in 1963, Boston Consulting Group (BCG) is the second in the holy trinity of elite management consulting firms known as the “MBB” (McKinsey, Bain and BCG) firms.
BCG was founded by Bruce D. Henderson, who attended Harvard Business School but left three months before graduation to work for the Westinghouse Corporation. After 18 years at Westinghouse followed by a shorter stint at Arthur D. Little, Henderson was recruited in 1963 by the CEO of the Boston Safe Deposit and Trust Company to establish a consulting arm that would serve clients of the bank. The next year Henderson launched Perspectives, a series of essays on strategy that would help pave the way for BCG’s eventual emergence as a major industry thought leader.
Headquartered in Boston, Massachusetts, BCG today employs more than 12,000 people in 85 offices across 48 countries around the world. More than half of BCG’s employees are consultants. BCG’s clients include two-thirds of all Fortune 500 companies, as well as government and nonprofit organizations.
BCG has developed several well-recognized business frameworks, including the “Growth-Share Matrix,” which examines market opportunities by market growth and size of share, and the “Experience Curve,” which notes the importance of experience in undertaking tasks more efficiently. The firm and its consultants have also published several books, including Your Strategy Needs a Strategy and Globality: Competing with Everyone from Everywhere for Everything.
BCG is widely recognized as an industry thought leader, a position that can be traced back to Bruce Henderson’s early launch of the Perspectives essay series on strategy. Continuing in this vein, many of the professionals who comprise the firm’s upper ranks today are recognized thought leaders in their fields. The depth and reach of BCG’s alumni network is also a huge advantage to its members, much as the alumni network of a very top business school is.