In a year marked by a global downturn in M&A activity, Clairfield has maintained top positions in financial advisory league tables. With a track record of over 195 deals announced worldwide in 2023, including many landmark deals, Clairfield ranked in the top 20 in the LSEG worldwide ranking of financial advisors. We credit our success to our committed focus on the midmarket sector, which has been more stable amid broader industry fluctuations. In addition, our increased activity in growth industry sectors, debt and ESG advisory as well as enhanced partnerships in key geographies coupled with strategic talent acquisition, has provided growth for our group. Our motto “Defined by your success” resonates more than ever as we celebrate our clients’ successes and share our own.
Our clients range from founder-led growth companies to family businesses to large, listed corporates, including VC and private equity backed businesses, and their financial investors. Deals on behalf of our clients were closed in a range of focus sectors. Transaction types include family business and private equity sell sides, corporate carveouts and noncore asset divestitures, buy-and-build corporate and financial investor platform deals, as well as debt advisory and capital raising. Some of our most notable deals this year, many of them crossborder, include:
- The acquisition by the Japanese manufacturer of industrial boilers, Miura Company, of a 20% stake in Jensen-Group, a Belgian manufacturer of industrial boilers, via a share placement of a 49% stake in Inax Corp., a manufacturer of business-use laundry machines and a full subsidiary of Miura Co. in a EUR 350 transaction.
- The sale of Paperfoam, a leading Dutch global provider of biodegradable packaging solutions, to Nissha, a Tokyo Stock Exchange-listed conglomerate active in various markets.
- The sale of CEIMIC, one of the leading Testing Inspection Certification (TIC) companies in Latin America, to Phenna Group, a leading global provider of TIC services backed by Oakley Capital.
- Gama Aviation’s divestment of its US business jet Maintenance & Repair Organisation Jet East, to West Star Aviation for US$131 million.
- The acquisition by Alten, one of France’s leading engineering and technology consulting groups, of East Japan Institute of Technology Co., Ltd from Ant Capital Partners.
- The acquisition by Sotralu Group, a European specialist in accessories and closures for aluminium joineries backed by Bridgepoint, of the Italian company FR Accessories.
The rankings of financial advisors by Mergermarket and LSEG once again reflected Clairfield’s successful transaction record for the last year. In addition to our longstanding position at the top of the tables for Europe and Latin America, we are delighted to have achieved top ten placements in Australia, Italy, Japan, and Eastern Europe and in the top twenty worldwide.
We credit our successes to client work entrusted to Clairfield and the calibre of our partner firms worldwide getting the job done. Our new partners in 2023 expanded our reach in Asia and the Americas.
2023 marked our first year of full partnership with Yamada Consulting Group in Japan. This formalisation of the collaboration between the two companies has already resulted in impressive cross-border M&A transactions as in and outbound capital flows have increased significantly with Japan. With Yamada Clairfield has now 13 offices in southeast Asia as our joint international M&A business expands intra regionally as well as with Europe and the Americas.
In the course of 2023, our UK partner firm Orbis Partners rebranded as Clairfield UK, marking the next chapter in a successful partnership that started in 2010. Later in the year, our partner in Turkey followed suit after ten years of operating as Canyon Venture Partners. These integrations are part of an on-going “one firm” process of Clairfield, combining local and regional, entrepreneurial capabilities with the benefits of a larger group.
Our eight practice groups continue to thrive and contribute to internal knowledge-sharing. The industrial, technology/media/digital, and business services sectors have been the most active, followed by consumer and healthcare. Our energy group has been very active in renewables. The ESG practice group has also left a mark with cumulative deal value in 2023 for ESG related deals we advised on of EUR 326 million.
We continue to develop the outstanding talent we have within our group. Our human resource commitment is enhanced by our now well established and successful Clairfield Academy analyst and associate training, and leadership programme. In 2023 we welcomed several senior investment banking professionals with impressive resumes to the team. Their choice to join us reflects the dynamic and enriching environment we foster.
“The year ahead, we will continue to focus on the issues that matter to us, identifying new opportunities for our clients and supporting our people and communities. While macro uncertainties are ongoing, we will continue to foster quality and being close to our clients as well expand on growth initiatives in service offering and strategic geographical expansion. We are entering 2024 with optimism, energy, and ideas in service to our clients” said Alexander Klemm, executive chair of Clairfield.