Welcome to this fifth edition of the Laeceum Year End Review. I trust this finds you well in what hopefully marks a permanent return to normal gatherings with our nearest and dearest.
We kicked off 2022 with our long-term professional services client who asked us to further exploit the ground-breaking SME modelling assets that we had supported them to develop during 2021. This support came in the form of a carefully orchestrated and innovative thought leadership campaign conceived by our very challenging and ambitious client sponsor. A national campaign was spearheaded by a detailed cornerstone report released in Q1 launched via a dedicated microsite. This report received significant interest from the national press and was covered by The Times. This report was then supported by the release of a series of regionally focused reports and events. Following events in Bristol and Birmingham, the national roadshow concluded at the Manchester Art Gallery where our client was joined by The City UK in a joint event where the merits of a combined macro and micro approach to analysing the true potential of the UK’s diverse SME population was debated in panel form with moderation by Laeceum. Our work with this client has been ground-breaking in many respects and we expect to continue building on it during 2023 with our client announcing a pioneering SME-focused initiative during H1.
Coming into Q2, we were introduced to a young and ambitious startup in the cashless tipping space that has enjoyed significant growth and market share capture in key UK and European markets within 12 months of launch. Initially working on a bridging capital raise, we were soon called upon to support on a broad range of activities including a funding application for a government-backed high potential equity investment scheme all the way through to an unexpected, time sensitive and complex debt restructure. The business is now well poised for an accelerated growth plan and a pre-series A fund raise during H1 2023 during which time we will continue to support the directors to meet and exceed their lofty ambitions for the business.
During Q3 and Q4, following a number of referrals and word of mouth recommendations, we initiated a number of interesting conversations. One of which was with the CEO and Chair of an award-winning UK-based property funding platform. We have been asked to support them in their pursuit to secure an additional strategic financing partner to fuel further growth of their property development lending book whilst at the same time helping them to identify partners to provide BTL finance to their loyal and growing roster of high quality UK-wide property developers. This is precisely the kind of situation we relish; working with the top-table on genuinely complex and strategic matters that will enable the business to outperform itself and its peers.
On the talent front we have had the pleasure of working with some alarmingly bright and hard-working interns from Cambridge and UCL this year. Special mention must go to Poppy Lefroy Brooks, Ben Clark and our current intern Theodor Bingley. Life as an intern at Laeceum is demanding and not for the feint hearted. This is why we place such a strong emphasis on the recruitment process which typically comprises 4-6 stages of behavioural, technical and fit interviews. We were welcomed back on campus at both UCL and Cambridge. At Cambridge, we were inundated with interest over two days at the Banking & Finance fair and the Consultancy fair. At UCL we were rushed off our feet at the Banking & Finance fair. Regardless of where we meet them, all the candidates we speak to are attracted to the prospect of working in a small and high performing team surrounded by a seasoned senior team in a client-facing role on high impact strategy consulting and M&A engagements with CXO-level client sponsors. In addition to our on-campus recruitment efforts, we held a range of outreach events including in person events at Chesham Grammar School, UCL and a virtual event with Robert Peston’s Speakers for Schools.
We expect to be even busier with our brand building and recruitment efforts this year as we lay the groundwork to make our first Analyst hire within the next 24 months or so. Our model will be different to most larger firms and reflects the groundswell of consensus that we hear from those around us. Alignment of interests sits at the heart of everything we do. Not only does that mean alignment of interests between Laeceum and its clients, but also between Laeceum and its most prized asset, its people. Consequently, employee ownership will form a critical pillar of the Laeceum offering in addition to a fast-paced environment with rapid progression through a flat and meritocratic corporate structure.
So as we look forward to 2023, this year would not be complete without a heartfelt thanks to our past, present and future clients, and, to old and new friends of the firm including Goldman Sachs, Rothschild & Co, Deloitte, Alvarez & Marsal, and Friel Stafford.
Wishing you all a joyous and prosperous 2023 and a very happy New Year.
Ravi Chauhan | Founder & MD