2Birds’ Fielder called in to advise on management buyout of GRS Group

Bird & Bird corporate partner Simon Fielder has landed an advisory role in the MBO of international recruitment consultant GRS Group, having previously acted for its new chief executive Ken Brotherston.

With the backing of private equity house Penta Capital and finance from Investec Growth & Acquisition Finance, the management now owns just under 50 per cent of the company.

Fielder said he first acted for Brotherston when the latter worked at banking and finance recruiter Morgan McKinley.

“He came in to work with the two guys who set up GRS – Richard Paisley and Dan Chester – and helped them get the business into shape for a sale,” said Fielder. “He was instrumental in getting the venture capital investors to come in.”

Brighton-headquartered GRS has offices in Hong Kong, London, Munich, New York, Paris and Zurich, and Fielder turned to Pillsbury Winthrop to provide US advice on the deal.

Fielder said that as the deal took longer than anticipated to go through it had to be structured in such a way that exiting shareholders could benefit from the old capital gains tax regime.

Penta Capital was advised by Dickson Minto partner Andrew Todd, while Inves – tec turned to Hammonds partner Andrew Watson and associate Mike Davison.