We are delighted to have advised Williams on the carve out of its Williams Advanced Engineering division
In Summer 2019 Williams, a historic motorsport team, made the strategic decision to dispose a majority stake in Williams Advanced Engineering (WAE).
WAE had been a separate, integral part of the Williams Group since 2007 and there were key operational and commercial interdependencies between WAE and the Williams Group, including operating on the same site in Oxfordshire and sharing key facilities including wind tunnels and testing. To enable a transaction to take place and to maximise deal value, it was therefore critical that the PE bidders were comfortable with operationally and financially how the divestment would work for them, and the path for transition.
We worked closely with Williams and the WAE team to supplement their investment bank advice including working capital modelling / positioning and completion mechanics, as well as driving detailed separation planning to manage bidder expectations.
The separation planning work was critical for a PE transaction to take place. Working closely with EMK Capital, their advisors, and management, we helped to ensure an outcome that was acceptable to each party. Our work with management in developing a comprehensive separation blueprint was praised by both EMK and their advisors.
Our wider deal negotiation advice resulted in incremental deal value through helping Williams to understand the ‘red lines’ and key negotiation points.
Grant Thornton provided hands on and practical advice around the separation of WAE, helping us to manage PE bidder expectations and achieve an outcome that was acceptable to both Williams and the eventual investor, EMK Capital.Doug Lafferty Chief Financial Officer, Grand Prix Holdings