EY-Parthenon's Dutch strategy team expands due diligence portfolio

01 July 2021 Consultancy.eu 3 min. read

EY-Parthenon’s Dutch strategy team has more than doubled its activity in the mergers & acquisitions space in 2020, delivering commercial due diligence expertise to over twenty deals that closed throughout the year.

In the Netherlands, EY-Parthenon supports its clients with three main lines of service: corporate and business unit strategy, top-line growth and mergers & acquisitions. The firm’s latter offering revolves around strategic and commercial due diligence services, with EY’s other colleagues chipping in (where needed) to provide other M&A services for an end-to-end company offering. 

Despite a subdued first half of 2020, EY-Parthenon saw the number of deals it worked on in 2020 double, in part due to market developments but also due to the firm’s growing presence in the strategic M&A scene. “Due to the more uncertain economic environment, buyers, sellers as well as investors/creditors tried to build in more certainty into their dealmaking processes,” explained Casper Roex, a Director in EY-Parthenon’s Strategy service line. 

EY-Parthenon's Dutch strategy team expands due diligence portfolio

This in turn meant an uptick in demand for the firm’s commercial due diligence services. Meanwhile, Jacco Slegers (also a Director in EY-Parthenon’s Strategy service line) said that many deals which had been placed on the backburner in the first half of 2020 came into play in the second half, causing a catch-up driven spike in M&A activity, a development which EY-Parthenon still sees well into the first half of the current year.

Notable buy-side deals EY-Parthenon worked in include the acquisition of warehouse Hema by the Jumbo-family en investor Parcom, the acquisition of Signature Foods (a chilled convenience food specialist, known for its Johma, Délio and Heks’nkaas brands), and the purchase of testing, inspection & certification specialist Normec.

Signalling the post-Covid-19 rebound of private equity, which according to Preqin continues to sit on record levels of dry powder, the majority of EY-Parthenon’s clientele were private equity firms. These include the likes of Arcus, Bencis, NPM Capital, Vendis and Nordian, who all have considerable portfolios of assets under management in the Benelux. 

With several investors, EY-Parthenon has built long-standing relationships and today serves as their go-to commercial due diligence advisor. Over the course of the past two years, EY-Parthenon’s team for instance worked on several deals with Arcus, helping the firm establish a European cold storage and logistics businesses (‘Constellation’) built up from the bolt-ons of among others Lintelo in the Netherlands, Stockhabo in Belgium, Glacio in Norway and, recently, Frigologix in Belgium and France. 

Commenting on the firm’s work in 2021, Roex said: “We were recently involved in several large deals, including CVC Capital Partner’s minority stake investment in cyber protection specialist Acronis, the transformative sale of cold storage & logistics platform Kloosterboer (sell-side advisory) and we supported GIMV with the acquisition of specialised contractor in energy & water infrastructure Verkley.”

“We expect the second half of 2021 to remain busy as our current pipeline and upcoming discussions signal a continuation of deal activity.” 

Globally, EY-Parthenon has over 5,000 strategy consultants in 50+ countries, making it one of the globe’s largest strategy consulting firms. The firm was founded in 2014 when EY acquired The Parthenon Group. In the Netherlands, the team was boosted significantly by the acquisition of OC&C’s Benelux office in 2016.