#Business Area Series – Rotational Advisory Programme

Most people who join us will join on our advisory rotational programme which involves trainees rotating around teams in the three core areas of consulting, deals and insolvency. Today Nick, Scott and Lucy provide an insight into the type of work done in these areas.

Nick – Consulting (London)
Business Consulting is a new and exciting part of Advisory which is seen as a key growth area of the firm. A team as part of the Advisory Rotational Programme based in Finsbury Square, Business Consulting offers a wide range of services to large corporate and private equity clients. These are typically split across the key skill areas of technology, operations, finance & working capital, and deals. The team works closely with other areas of Advisory, typically TAS national (Transactions Advisory Services), Corporate Finance Advisory, Transaction Tax Group, Pensions Advisory and Audit & Tax.

The team is high performing and has ambitious growth plans. Our people come from varied backgrounds including management consultancy, professional services, industry and self-employment. The Business Consulting team delivers its service offering through working closely with clients to understand their business issues and collaboratively form solutions. Our engagements arise as a result of corporate change, company transactions, distress or regulatory changes and we therefore work to a varied backdrop of environments.

As a result of our ‘sleeves-up’ engagement style, our people have a high degree of client contact and are regularly on-site – we lead with an opinion formed through deep knowledge and experience, which is becoming increasingly valuable to our clients. Engagements are occasionally London based, but generally team members will be able to travel across the UK, Europe and, increasingly, across the globe. The team takes a pragmatic approach to client delivery; we work hard when we need to, and hours can be long – but when there is an opportunity to recharge, all team members are encouraged to do so.

Trainees in this team will spend the their rotation year working across most areas of our services offerings to provide a broad view of our client commitments. Engagements will typically include 2-5 people and all members will have direct contact with senior client contacts (ie. FDs, COOs, CEOs and investment managers & partners). The work is incredibly varied, and as a result our team members have a wide skillset – our team is full of ambitious and confident individuals who are inspired by business; they have strong commercial acumen, are able to analyse data in great detail and exhibit excellent interpersonal and writing skills. We are a team of self-starters who enjoy stretching themselves personally and professionally.

A role in this team isn’t just client- facing. We’re growing from a modest base and all team members are encouraged to get involved in building the Business Consulting practice for the future, this means being involved in recruitment, business development, networking and internal operations improvements.

We’ve grown quickly over the last few years and have ambitious growth plans which are aligned to the wider firm aspirations of Vision 2020.

Scott – Deals (London)

My name is Scott Williams and I worked in the firms London Lead Advisory team in Corporate Finance for 15 months on my placement year. I’ve now begun my final year studies as a BSc Management student at Cass Business School, London and will return to Grant Thornton as a trainee in advisory next year.

Grant Thornton is a dynamic firm with great growth ambitions, making it an exciting place to work. The work we do in lead advisory epitomise these ambitions and the firms values as we work together, to help clients realise their own strategic goals, whilst maintain our position as one of the go to lead advisory practices in the UK’s mid-market. 

Lead advisory has provided me with the unique opportunity, as an undergraduate, to work on a number of different transactions, across a diverse range of sectors, with some businesses operating internationally, all with impressive growth stories.

As an associate I have been given exceptional exposure on all transactions that I have been involved in and I have played an important role throughout the different stages in each process. The team have trusted me to deliver and given me great responsibility on client facing tasks.   

Often in lead advisory and with such responsibility, comes additional pressure as deadlines draw close, pitches near and clients become more demanding. The role requires resilient and confident people who are willing to learn, have the ability to adapt and are strong communicators.

You will learn to be an expert in a number of different sectors and must be willing to understand the market in which your client operates.

I worked on the sale of a management consulting business and a not for profit education provider. The sale of tastecard and with one of the world’s largest discount diners club, a private equity house and with the owners on leading restaurant chains.

There is no typical day in the life of a lead advisory team member, because as mentioned we work with so many different businesses. However if one thing is guaranteed, you will learn fast!

Corporate finance will be an extremely important asset to the business if it is to achieve its vision for 2020 and with this in mind it makes Lead Advisory an exciting team to be a part of.

If you want exposure to an array of businesses, in a range of sectors, in a team that is mid-market leader, at a dynamic and fast growing organisation, Grant Thornton’s lead advisory team provides you with an exciting opportunity!!

Please feel free to post any questions or comments below.

 Lucy – Insolvency (London)

Why did the cross-border insolvency practitioner cross the road?

To get to the assets.

Ok, so we might not be the funniest team in Grant Thornton, but when it comes to recovering assets within the CII team, we are certainly a team that has seen some particularly “funny” items. Whether it is the recovery and sale of yachts, personalised number plates or fine wine, each job offers something new.

It’s not all fun and games though. The cases and type of work that we deal with are very litigious, involving billions of pounds and often ground-breaking decisions that are essentially setting the precedent for the future. I am sure you have all read about how the European financial crisis is affecting business, well, it’s the CII team’s job to be the leader in the market and ready to provide assistance in Europe, and around the world.

Firstly, though I should tell you more about who our team are. We are part of the advisory service line of Grant Thornton, dealing specifically with the large multi-national insolvencies from around the world, across multi jurisdictions; usually involving intricate group structures, alleged fraudulent activities and complex debt structures. Our team is acknowledged as a market leader and has built up a great international reputation from handling some of the largest insolvency appointments in the market, working for the benefit of recovering assets for the creditors. In fact, a current litigation which our team is currently working on is reported to be the largest litigation (monetary-wise) outside of the United States. We are talking billions of dollars.

So, more about the role as a trainee. I joined the CII team based in the London office just over two years ago, essentially focusing on the litigations of the insolvencies we deal with. After two years I am very proud to say that I am about to embark on the graduate scheme, studying my accounting exams and working more in the intricacies of the case as a trainee. Due to the “complex” nature of the cases that we work on, they tend to be split into workstreams, mainly those of billing, creditors, committee, assets and also supporting the litigations and battles for recognition in jurisdictions where the company has assets. The role itself is essentially to support the managers who are leading these workstreams, working on asset recovery, gathering evidence, drafting witness statements, liaising with our legal advisors across the world and also our offices of Grant Thornton in the BVI, Cayman Islands, Hong Kong and the Channel Islands. Trainees in the team are vital in ensuring that the  insolvency cogs are turning and our statutory obligations are met. The role requires excellent organisational skills, a keen eye for detail and the ability to communicate to all levels of employees.

You may be thinking how does a team that works in insolvency align ourselves with the 2020 Grant Thornton goal of being the go-to firm for business growth. We do this by using our strength in the market to provide advice and knowledge on our experiences, both for law firms and governments across the globe. There are initiatives going on at the moment of collaboration with other jurisdictions to improve the difficulties that cross border insolvency practitioners face in gaining recognition and recovering assets.


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