Our services

Business turnaround

During stressed financial times, enhancing a company’s management is key to expediting change. We have significant experience at acting in such circumstances in roles such as Interim CEO, Chief Restructuring Officer and Finance Director. We can demonstrate excellent results in all sizes of companies from SMEs to larger mid-market corporates, and across a variety of sectors.

Bob was retained by the Board of Trustees as Interim Transformation Director by a well-respected national research-based think-tank charity. The remit was to develop strategy and actions to return to a position of financial sustainability.

This far-reaching review delivered an independent assessment of the financial sustainability of each of the charity’s work and income streams, improved utilisation of assets (notably land & buildings), a significant cost reduction programme, an improved model for monitoring and submitted bids for funding as well as implementation of improved time reporting and more meaningful KPIs.

This work formed the basis for the future strategic direction of the charity.

Chair/Non-Exec Director/Board representation

We have acted on boards for a number of financial stakeholders invested in businesses going through stress or change. Here we have provided clear, best-practice corporate governance, and encouraged and supported boards to make the decisions necessary to move forward. We have sat on boards in automotive, infrastructure, real estate, manufacturing and travel, among others.

Graham was introduced to the Board of the operator of the M6 toll road by the lender base following a scheme of arrangement restructuring. Acting as Lender Director initially, his role was to oversee the board activities and hold veto powers on key matters. The lender group was a 27-strong complex mix of legacy banks (mostly European) and UK and US hedge funds who were invested in at different debt price levels.

After a period of strong revenue and EBITDA growth, Graham acted as Chair of a sub-committee to run a sale process which successfully resulted in an exit for all lenders and the transfer of the business control to an Australian infrastructure fund.

Since then, he was asked to remain on the board as an independent director and was directly involved in the refinancing of the acquisition debt. Latterly, he held roles as Acting CEO during the interim period between permanent incumbents and was responsible for the interface with the Government concession grantor (Secretary of State via DTI), Highways England and the West Midlands Combined Authority. He is currently Interim Chairman and also chairs the Audit Committee and the Remuneration Committee.

Financial Control and Cash Management

Sometimes, there is an immediate need to establish strong and clear financial control due to pending critical cash points. We can show significant success in providing this hands-on service, irrespective of whether we are providing fuller turnaround services.

Board advisors, appointed at the request of the bank. Provided a Rapid Business Assessment of the business, its overall strategy and performance and review of operating and cash forecasts. This review allowed us to make recommendations for improving margins, reducing overheads and minimising working capital tied up in the business.

This in turn allowed the bank to assess with greater clarity its lending capacity and the associated risks. As a result, the bank increased facilities allowing the business to take full advantage of the growth opportunities they had developed.

Refinancing and Restructuring

When financial stakeholders wish to change their support priorities or when additional capital is required, we lead or provide support to this. We have worked successfully to refinance SMEs looking for a provider change and have worked with larger corporates to refinance or raise debt facilities up to £1bn from global financial markets.

Complex Situational Resolution

Inevitably in larger, multi-stakeholder companies, progress to a conclusion is made more challenging by the need to find a consensus that unlocks a transaction. This is particularly relevant in PFI-style contracts, in syndicated bank lending and in regulated markets. We have successfully worked in such situations to develop and initiate solutions by driving matters forward on behalf of stakeholders. More often than not, our work leads to a sale transaction or a consensual position that sees stakeholders exit.

Simon was appointed as interim Head of Finance to a £30m turnover school travel operator, part of an £80m turnover group, with the task of setting up a standalone finance department and managing an extremely tight cash position whilst the group was sold. The number of interested parties and complexity of the transaction meant that this took longer than planned, creating further cash pressures as the process continued.

The group was sold to a new PE owner in two parts, allowing them to then consider the further sale of the school travel business which was non-core. Whilst they considered this, Simon improved the financial reporting and controls, continued managing the cash position to ensure compliance with CAA covenants, and implemented a new finance IT system in 3 months, all whilst managing the business through a continuing period of uncertainty.

All of these changes facilitated the sale of the business, allowing the PE owner to exit and focus on the core, whilst finding new owners with the focus and drive needed to improve and develop the business. This project took 2 years to complete.