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Analyst Insights: Helen

Greenhill advised The Miller Group, the UK’s largest private homebuilder, on the recapitalisation of its balance sheet, comprising a substantial new equity injection and significant debt for equity swap. I was brought in early on in the process to help identify potential interested parties and then to support the team whilst refinancing terms were negotiated with the lending syndicate and incoming shareholders. Part of this was first to thoroughly analyse the housing and housebuilding sector in order to fully understand the existing market conditions and any opportunities for growth, before an appropriate valuation of the business for incoming investors could be determined.

This initial research was particularly interesting due to the adverse economic climate and the current housing crisis, which have caused the competitive landscape to shift dramatically in recent years. I gained useful insight into what drives the UK housing market as well as exposure to the wider economic landscape. That is one of the best things about Greenhill -you may be thrown in at the deep end but I think that’s the best way to learn - no two deals are the same. The learning curve is steep but the reward is being able to work alongside industry experts.

I was lucky enough to spend time working closely with the senior management team at Miller who are highly respected in the sector, giving me the benefit of their combined extensive experience. Together we created detailed presentation materials on the business for private equity firms and hedge funds. Then came lengthy negotiations to fine tune term sheets with the lending syndicate and shareholders. It was great to learn these negotiation tactics first hand, listening in on the conversations between the various parties, and of course, to ultimately reach successful deal terms was extremely satisfying.