Livingstone’s Business Services sector team has advised Catalyst Development, an award-winning specialist financial markets consultancy, on its acquisition of investment management consultancy Knadel. This marks the first in a series of planned strategic acquisitions by Catalyst, with the combined group forecast to almost double business revenues in the coming financial year. The acquisition follows an investment from mid-market private equity firm Livingbridge in October 2017, which Livingstone also advised on.
Knadel is a market-leading investment management consultancy, providing business and technology consulting across the full range of the investment industry. Since launching in 2009, Knadel has worked on circa 400 projects with over 120 different clients. With offices in London and Jersey, Knadel works with firms who have UK, European and global business models, supporting both onshore and offshore clients.
Catalyst specialises in regulatory-driven change, organisational improvement and talent development programmes for global financial markets firms. Since its foundation in 1994, Catalyst has worked with more than 70 clients in over 30 financial centres worldwide, including nine out of the world’s top 12 investment banks, and has mentored more than 250 of the most senior figures in financial markets. Catalyst holds the UK’s highest business accolade, The Queen’s Award for Enterprise, in recognition of the firm’s global impact.
Commenting on the acquisition, Andrew Middleton, CEO at Catalyst, said: “Our clients increasingly require ‘specialism at scale’: high levels of integrated expertise to tackle large, complex programmes of change. This deal will significantly broaden our offer across the full spectrum of financial markets. Catalyst has long-standing relationships with many of the world’s largest financial institutions and a strong reputation for excellence; Knadel have a remarkably similar profile with the investment management community. Together we share a values-based approach and a fundamental commitment to outstanding client service. We are delighted to be joined by the Knadel team and look forward to working together as one Catalyst group, focused on changing the financial sector for good.”
“A key pillar of our strategy for the buy-out was accelerating our growth through strategic acquisitions and, thanks to the support of Livingbridge and Livingstone, we have made our first major step on that journey.”
Paul Miller, Founding Managing Director at Knadel said: “Joining Catalyst makes perfect sense for Knadel; our skills, experience and culture are very complementary. Over the last nine years we have built a very successful business providing knowledge, advice and delivery to the investment & wealth management communities. Bringing together two specialist teams will allow us to extend our capabilities into new markets and provide additional services to our many clients.”
Alex John Partner at Livingstone concluded: “This value-enhancing acquisition, completed only four months after the buy-out with Livingbridge, adds immediate scale and greater diversity to the group. It is great to see the buy-and-build strategy coming to fruition so quickly and we look forward to continuing to support the group going forwards.”
The completion of this transaction reinforces Livingstone’s credentials in the specialist consultancy space following on from the sale of Technical Design to French engineering group Segula Technologies, Tata Technologies’ strategic acquisition of Escenda and the sale of Javelin Group to Accenture.