Following the sudden departure of the group CEO and CFO Bob was retained as Group CEO/CRO by the PE owner of a £29m turnover group of print management and related companies with a substantial blue-chip customer base. The remit was to manage the consequences from the director level terminations, improve corporate governance, enhance profitability and use of working capital, all with a view to a group disposal in a 12 month time frame.
Each company was reviewed with a view to governance and enhancing enterprise value. Group profitability was significantly improved from an EBITDA margin of 5% to 8.5%. Stakeholder, customer and supplier relationships were managed, increasing turnover, whilst successfully challenging unfair customer buying practices without jeopardising profitable business. Following significant deterioration, working capital was significantly improved.
Enterprise value increased considerably during the course of this role giving the shareholder time to plan an orderly exit.
We have worked on a number of real estate assignments, both individually and as a group. These include:-
Business turnaround and sale of a neglected ground rent portfolio, involving the need to: completely reconfigure the company’s accounting records: bring the estate assets up to safe and acceptable standards; resolve a number of legal cases; reorganise the service company staff; radically improve the debtor position; prepare and then implement a sale transaction
Advisor to a European bank on a complex transaction of a large ground rent portfolio: confidential
Business turnaround of a Private Rented Sector and commercial lease portfolio, involving: improving cashflows by dealing with deep-seated debtor problems; renegotiating supplier payment terms to extend creditors; tackling development project specification and control; process changes to the contracting operations to reduce waste and supplier overrun; introducing competitive supplier retendering; realising parts of the estate for profitable return.
Management and preparation for sale of a Midlands ground rent and commercial lease portfolio, involving: acting as statutory Director for the management company; reducing the debtor position for ground rents and service charges; ensuring all documentation was organised and available for a sale process.
• Acted as Lender Director for a UK and European bank of a UK based travel group which was both CAA ATOL bonded and ABTA registered. The assignment involved: a complex balance sheet restructuring involving a debt:equity swap: leading a hands-on programme in the company for major cost-of-sales renegotiation, overhead reduction activity and marketing efficiency reviews; preparing and then managing a sales process which saw the exit of the two lenders
• Appointed as interim Head of Finance for a £30m turnover school travel operator, both CAA ATOL bonded and ABTA registered. The role was initially to set up a standalone Finance department and manage a very tight cash position whilst the group was sold. Financial controls and reporting were improved, a new finance system implemented in 3 months and cash managed whilst the new PE owners then ran a sales process of the travel business resulting in their exit.
Sectors in which we have worked:
• Home products
• Construction products
• Food manufacturing
• High street retailing
• Plastics manufacturing
• Tour operators/travel
• Toy wholesaling
• Automotive parts manufacturing
• Luxury toiletries
• Stationery manufacturing
• Business to business services
• Laundry supplies
• Electronics manufacturing
• Waste management
• Testing, inspection & certification
• Building services & maintenance
• Public sector (education & health care)