Hellman & Friedman invests in turnaround advisor

In one of two private equity investments in a professional services firm announced today, the San Francisco-based Hellman & Friedman will take a majority interest of AlixPartners along with the firm’s management.

Hellman and Friedman has agreed to a recapitalisation of AlixPartners, an international professional services firm specialising in corporate turnaround and performance improvement. Through the arrangements AlixPartners’ 78 managing directors and the remainder of its more than 500 employees will partner with Hellman & Friedman to hold a majority interest in the firm.

Terms of the transaction were not disclosed, but Hellman & Friendman did reveal that that deal puts the total enterprise value of AlixPartners in excess of $800 milllion (€620.5 million). Jay Alix, who founded the firm in 1981, is the current owner and will retain a minority investment in the firm as well as maintaining his position as co-chairman. Hellman & Friedman managing director Philip Hammarskjold will become the other co-chairman.

“Over the years we’ve been active investors in the human capital business,” said Hammarskjold. “We’ve invested in companies like [marketing agencies] Young and Rubicam and Digitas;  under the right circumstances these are investments we like.”

AlixPartners CEO Michael Grindfors said the firm is widely credited with being a pioneer in the industry and is actually credited with inventing the term “turnaround”.

In the last ten years the firm has grown from two offices in the US to 12 offices in North America, Europe and Asia, with affiliations in South America and Australia. During that time, the firm has achieved organic average annual growth of more than 30 percent. The firm’s headquarters are in Southfield, Michigan.

In a similar transaction, Crestview Partners announced today it has reached a deal to acquire Munder Capital, the investment management firm of Detroit bank Comerica, for $302 million.