Aegis is one of Greenhill’s longest standing clients. Earlier this year, Aegis received an offer from Japanese advertising agency Dentsu for £3.2 billion, one of the biggest M&A deals in Europe this year.
I joined Greenhill in 2010 as a graduate analyst and was bought onto the Aegis account when they sold their market research businesses, Synovate, for £525m in 2011. I was part of a very small team working directly with one vice president, a Principal and two managing directors at Greenhill.
In terms of the day to day activity, our primary job was to advise Aegis on whether we thought the bid from Dentsu was acceptable from a financial perspective. In order to do this we had to perform a thorough analysis of the business including a comprehensive valuation. For this we had to look in detail at the company’s past performance and financials. We presented our findings to the Board of Aegis for them to make their decision.
Once we agreed a price with Dentsu for the sale of Aegis, I worked closely with lawyers and with their financial advisers, Morgan Stanley, to make sure that Dentsu had everything they needed. We acted as the go-between for all parties to make sure that the path to announcement was as smooth as possible.
I was lucky to have been involved in such a large and high profile transaction. It was great to be part of such a small team and to have the chance to attend the management meetings. I spent a lot of time with incredibly senior people, such as the CEO of Aegis and learnt first-hand how the entire M&A process works.
It was a huge amount of responsibility being brought on to such an important account. I was liaising directly with our Client, Aegis, and the advisers of Dentsu which in other companies would be unheard of for an analyst.