More than ever before, companies are facing exceedingly complex and high-stakes transaction, lawsuits, and contingent liabilities. Just look at the recent disaster with Merck (NYSE:MRK), which will result in unpredictable liability exposure for the company.

But there are consulting firms that help deal with the complexity; in a sense, they are outsourced experts that provide research, analysis, and advice. One of the leaders is Charles River Associates (NASDAQ:CRAI).

The company focuses on legal/regulatory consulting and business consulting. There are nearly 500 consultants on staff, with varied backgrounds in economics, corporate finance, materials, and engineering.

Credibility is key in this specialized business, and over the past 38 years, Charles River has built a strong brand. The client list is sterling, with names like Genentech (NYSE:DNA), Amazon.com (NASDAQ:AMZN), Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT), and Time Warner (NYSE:TWX).

Yesterday, the company announced its quarterly results, and there are certainly no signs that the growth has ended. On the news, the stock price rose 12.4% to $38.29.

In the quarter, the company posted an increase of 50% in revenues to $74.2 million. Net income increased 58% to $5.4 million.

On the conference call, Charles River upped its full-year fiscal 2004 guidance, with revenue growth at 30% to 35%, up from 25% to 30%. EPS is expected to grow at 20% to 25%.

Besides organic growth, Charles River got a nice boost from the recent acquisition of InteCap, which is a specialty consulting firm for intellectual property and commercial damages.

Then again, part of Charles River's consulting expertise is mergers and acquisitions. So, it is good to know the company takes its own advice it gives to clients.

Fool contributor Tom Taulli does not own the stocks mentioned in the article.