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Case Study
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Private Credit Team Build

 

Godliman successfully placed three senior individuals from leading Private Debt funds to develop the European Private Credit business, supported by deputies in France and Germany.

Godliman successfully placed three senior individuals from leading Private Debt funds to develop the European Private Credit business, supported by deputies in France and Germany.

​The Challenge

  • To build a pan-European Private Credit team for our Asset Management client with no prior illiquid Debt capability. The CIO had presented the business case and gained support from the broader partnership for initial seed capital and five hires.

  • Our client ruled out an acquisition due to lack of viable targets and high valuations; and the very high levels of ‘carry’ lock-ins ruled out a lift-out. Hence a team build-out was required.

  • Our engagement required us first to hire a Team Head based in London, and then to build out local mid-market origination and execution teams in France and Germany over an 18 month period.

  • Given the competitiveness of Private Credit/Direct Lending over recent years, we had to be mindful of inflated salaries and of carry schemes.  As a first-time fund in such a competitive landscape, the client also had to decide on a strategy that was differentiated from other firms.

  • Our client has a strong collaborative and values-driven culture, so Godliman’s Best-fit Search process was critical in making sure the private debt team fit the overall culture, values and behaviours of the broader firm.

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“The Godliman team operate an extremely thorough process and have extensive market knowledge.”

The Results

 

Godliman placed the overall Head of Private Credit within a year (including gardening leave). Once this candidate was in place, we started the assignments to hire the Heads of DACH and France, and their deputies, placing all four positions over the course of the following 9 months.

 

The Solution

Best-Fit Competitor Analysis and Research

 

  • Godliman initially help inform our client’s talent strategy by carrying out a competitor analysis of ten mainstream Asset Managers, focusing on how they had built Private Credit, including team size, market strategies targeted, individual areas of focus, salaries etc. Our client used this research project to facilitate the internal discussion to justify the team build-out.

  • We also introduced the client to various senior Private Credit Principals for exploratory meetings to assist in educating senior management on sector trends, and help inform and refine the initial business plan.

  • Once approved by the Board, Godliman worked with our client to define relevant profiles, including skills and behavioural characteristics, as well as the sequencing of hires and messaging to the market.

  • Using our Best-Fit research process, we produced a whole-market map of all the UK, France and DACH Private Credit teams within Private Debt funds and Asset Managers. We also looked on an ad hoc basis at Leveraged Finance teams within Banking and Debt Advisors.

  • For the Head of Europe, we identified 516 investors at 64 Target companies and agreed on a Target List of 55 candidates; for the Head of DACH, we identified 98 investors at 62 Target companies and agreed on a Target List of 31 candidates; and for the Head of France, we identified 164 investors at 56 Target companies and agreed on a Target List of 28 candidates.

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