AlixPartners is opening a Hong Kong office that will serve as its Asian headquarters, the global business advisory firm said this week. Demand for corporate restructuring and investigative services has expanded in the region, particularly in mainland China, providing new opportunities for consultants.
CV Ramachandran, head of the firm’s Asia business unit and with a focus on enterprise improvement, will take charge of the office, which will be staffed by veteran consultants with regional experience. The official opening takes place on April 27.
“This marks the 10th year that AlixPartners has been on the ground in Asia, consistent with our approach of opening offices officially only after our footprint is firmly entrenched,” said Fred Crawford, CEO of AlixPartners.
“Because of the rapid growth in our business over the past years we have decided to open an official office in Hong Kong and to make it our regional headquarters, committing more senior people and operational support to the business here and having a more physical presence,” said Ramachandran. “Overall in Asia, we expect to achieve double-digit growth over the next several years.”
During its 10 years in Asia, AlixPartners has set up offices in Shanghai and Tokyo, and has 14 others in the rest of the world. The firm was established in 1981 and specialises in four main products: enterprise improvement, turnaround and restructuring, financial advisory and information-management services.
“We have had an office in Shanghai since 2007 and in Tokyo since 2005, but we have been operating all across the region, for example Singapore, Korea, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Thailand, Malaysia, Brunei, Cambodia, the Philippines, Indonesia and PNG [Papua New Guinea], placing consultants where they are needed to support our clients during projects,” Ramachandran added.
Also moving to the Hong Kong office are Rob Morris, managing director in AlixPartners’ financial advisory services unit, who concentrates on corporate investigations and litigation support, and Eric Thompson, managing director in the firm’s turnaround and restructuring services unit. Meanwhile, Ivo Naumann, a managing director based in Shanghai and head of the firm’s business in China, will continue to serve his clients in Hong Kong for both corporate turnarounds and performance improvement.
“In every economy, including the rapidly growing ones of Asia, we find a measurable number of companies that are not doing well — firms that, barring expert intervention, may cease to exist,” said Ramachandran. “The investors in these firms have a strong incentive to turn around the performance of these companies and AlixPartners supports investors with a customised combination of interim management, financial engineering and operational actions across a number of industries.”
And “with the increase in regulation globally and the acute focus recently on the corporate governance of Chinese firms listed overseas, [Morris’s] side of the business, corporate investigations, is also growing for us in Asia”.