Ankura builds high-profile team to enter UK restructuring market

28 September 2021 Consultancy.uk 3 min. read
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Ankura Consulting has launched a European restructuring practice to work with businesses across various industries facing complex challenges following the pandemic. The US headquartered consultancy has brought on board several high-profile restructuring specialists to bolster its new offering.

Founded in 2014 by incumbent CEO Roger D. Carlile, Ankura Consulting is a business advisory firm which provides management consulting and expert services to businesses. Backed by private equity group Madison Dearborn Partners, Ankura has been looking to expand across the Atlantic in recent years.

Over the course of the pandemic, one of the service lines many consulting firms have been moving to strengthen is restructuring. With a growing number of firms coming under financial distress due to Covid-19, and the ending of government support in September, many are now bracing for heightened demand in their insolvency and corporate recovery lines. Ankura is making just such a move for its European organisation.

Ankura builds high-profile team to enter UK restructuring market

Employing around 1,500 people globally, in Europe, Ankura operates with two offices. Its office in London employs around 150 people, while it has a further 80 professionals in Frankfurt. The firm’s new restructuring wing will operating out of the London office – which relocated two years ago to accommodate such expansion.

Philip Gund, Ankura’s Global Head of Turnaround & Restructuring noted, “We are excited to welcome our colleagues in Europe as we continue to expand our global footprint… We look forward to collaborating in bringing solutions to our internationally based clients and other cross-border opportunities as well as further building on our Global T&R capabilities.”

According to Gund, Ankura’s US restructuring team has already been involved in a number of high-profile engagements since its inception in 2016, showing the potential the new wing of the European business has. Cases for the US team have included SunEdison, Exide Technologies, Brooks Brothers, Intelsat and Puerto Rico’s Fiscal Agency and Financial Advisory Authority and Electric Power Authority. 

As the European restructuring team looks to hit the ground running, it is looking to hire industry specialists to grow its initial team of 11. So far, the firm has hired former Boston Consulting Group (BCG) Partners Mark Hawken and Donald Featherstone, and Scott Millar, the former UK Head of Restructuring at advisory firm AlixPartners, to lead a European turnround and restructuring division. As one of the team’s Senior Managing Directors, Featherstone believes this will help win “strategic insolvency” work, specialising in prepack administrations and company voluntary arrangements, filling a gap in the market by increasing the efficiency of these processes.

Featherstone added, “Over the past 18 months, businesses have experienced significant upheaval, but now they are beginning to look ahead and will require a different kind of turnaround and restructuring support. We believe this represents a significant gap in the advisory market that Ankura’s practice has been built to provide. This is already one of the most impressive groups of senior restructuring professionals in the market.”

Initially, the three Senior Managing Directors will be supported by a team of eight experienced restructuring professionals, who bring a blend of operating and financial expertise from leading consultancies and organisations. Ankura’s new practitioners include Managing Directors, Craig Bowen, Mark Smith, and Mark Menon; Senior Directors, Mark Christiansen, Barry Hopkins, and Nick Edwards; and Directors, Gyusub Chung and Joshua Edwards.