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Corporate Finance – Operational Deal Services

Hi, I’m Nick and I work in a team in Corporate Finance in London. Having joined our Southampton office as a tax graduate straight from university, I’ve now spent four years with the firm. After completing my CTA, I took the plunge into a different role in a different city and here’s an insight into my first year with the team.

The last year has been a huge growth year for me personally and our team in Finsbury Square. It has been great to see the development and transformation this team has gone through over the last 12 months. For me personally, I can reflect on the challenging, interesting and exciting year this has been.

As a trainee I always knew I wanted to get involved in a wide range of activities at Grant Thornton (one being a previous member of this blog team). I held a close view that, when I qualified, I wanted to move to London and take on a new role with a corporate finance focus. I intensively researched my options within the firm and when I read about the specific team I have joined, I knew it was where I wanted to be.

We provide practical, hands-on advice to clients undertaking a company transaction – so coming from my background in tax made me something of a oddity in the team. My in-depth tax knowledge was no longer at the core of what I did, and I needed to quickly learn new content and develop my understanding of business in a different way. Needless to say, it’s been a steep learning curve but in an area of our business which is inherently interesting and I’ve received tremendous support from my colleagues and peers.

My first project saw me jump straight in at the deep end. I worked alongside a partner and associate director in the separation of a professional services business from its parent overseas. This meant working on-site at the client’s premises for most of the working week and spending time with them to aid in their thinking around how they would practically separate key areas of the business, eg. IT, HR, Finance etc. This meant face-to-face interviews, plenty of number crunching in Excel and writing several reports for our private equity client.

Since this initial project, I have worked across a wide number of our service offerings. I have worked on the synergy review for a services business merger in London, a process efficiencies identification project for a manufacturing business and the appraisal of the corporate structure of a large infrastructure project in London. I am currently involved in a separation where we are restructuring the business and laying the foundations for its future as a standalone organisation.

The work has been varied, and that generates challenge, but it certainly keep me on my feet and learning. The support I have received from my colleagues has been reassuring and senior colleagues take a genuine desire to see me develop and grow within the team. This growth became visible to me when I discovered I had been promoted from Executive to Assistant Manager on 1 October. The degree of development is rapid and I’m already looking at what I need to do next to step up to Manager.

In July this year, our partner group outlined their vision of the future and an outline to our ambitious growth strategy was shared. With investment being made in key areas of our business, and new people joining on a regular basis, this is an exciting place to be – I look forward to seeing what the next year holds for our team.

If you’d like to find out more about my experiences as a trainee and beyond, please don’t hesitate to get in touch and I will be happy to answer any questions you may have.

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