Catalyst Development rebrands as Sionic following merger

19 June 2019 3 min. read
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UK financial services specialist Catalyst Development has rebranded, following its merger with a US consultancy. Continuing under a unified brand, Catalyst will operate as Sionic, while its CEO Andrew Middleton becomes an Executive on the combined firm’s board.

In Spring 2019, a cross-Atlantic deal brokered between two UK and US based firms created one of the world’s largest specialist consultancies. Catalyst Development, which had recently been expanding its capacity with a campaign of acquisitions, announced an agreement to join forces with Sionic Advisors, forging a company of over 300 people, catering to clients from the financial services sector of three continents.

The combined group now commands revenue of over $60 million, from locations across Europe, North America and Asia and offices in New York, Toronto, London and Jersey (Channel Islands); Madrid, Vilnius, Zurich; Bogota; Mumbai and Singapore, as well as a longstanding presence in Tokyo. The deal was backed by private equity firm and long-term Catalyst investor Livingbridge, a mid-market private equity firm investing in fast-growing companies valued up to £200 million.

Catalyst Development rebrands as Sionic following merger

Now, moving forward from their new union, the financial services specialist firms have announced that Catalyst Development will move under the Sionic brand, while co-founder Craig Sher will become Chief Executive Officer of the combined business as of mid-June. Andrew Middleton, who served as Catalyst CEO from August 2015, will become an Executive Director of the Sionic Board, leading a portfolio of senior banking client relationships.

Commenting on the news, Catalyst Development Chairman Tony Solway, who remains in place after the transition, said, “This announcement heralds the arrival of a major new force in financial services consulting and the Board see enormous potential for future growth in the business. I would like to thank Andrew for his transformation of Catalyst as CEO over the last four years and for his continuing contribution to the firm. We now look forward to working with Craig to deliver our vision to our clients, shareholders and staff.” 

Craig Sher added, “Adopting the single brand, Sionic, will make it easier for our clients and potential clients to identify and access our unique blend of business and people development services. And this is just the start. We shall shortly be announcing a series of senior new industry hires and new office openings in Europe, Asia and the Americas, as we rapidly become the leading specialist firm in global financial services.”

Pete Clarke, Partner at the firm’s private equity backer Livingbridge, said, “This singular Sionic brand is representative of our ambition to have a totally integrated specialist consultancy business of scale with a significant international footprint, unifying 10 offices across nine countries. We are delighted that Craig is now CEO and look forward to working with him to deliver on our ambitious strategy to continue Sionic’s global expansion, both organically and through further targeted acquisitions.”