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Private equity: Downturn puts a premium on operational skills

Jennifer Hughes
Financial Times 17 November 2008


As economies world-wide head into turmoil, private equity groups and consulting firms find that their relationship is changing. 

In its special report on 'The business of consulting', the Financial Times interviews PA corporate strategy specialist Charlie Simpson, who says that private equity is being squeezed from both ends:

“A lot of strategic buyers aren’t in a position to acquire, the market for initial public offerings has been decimated and the secondary market where other private equity houses might buy in isn’t in great shape either,” says Simpson. So the groups are likely to have to hold on to the assets in their portfolios for much longer than they initially planned – and that requires a whole new range of skills.

These might include the more traditional mangement consulting skills such as cost saving and performance improvement.

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