When a top-tier private equity firm in Australasia needs to make high stakes investment decisions, they must rely on rigorous and robust analysis that goes beyond the manicured materials that are usually provided by their prospects.
This is where Temple steps in.
As their Managing Director explains, “Paul Winton is a free agent who asks his own questions, forms his own networks, conducts his own analysis, and formulates his own opinions about a prospect. He opens the door to information that we would otherwise not be able to get.”
So important is preserving the secrecy of this relationship, the private equity firm wished to remain anonymous. “He is our secret squirrel. He is able to obtain information as an independent agent who is not directly affiliated to us, so he doesn’t raise any eyebrows or make anyone suspect that a PE deal is actually on the cards.”
In fact, not being directly under the private equity firm has proven to have other advantages. “Paul brings an outsider’s perspective. He has worked with us long enough to understand our style and so is able to engage effectively with us when discussing the pros and cons of a deal. Yet, he can spot certain patterns that we perhaps miss. That’s a plus we get from him not being in the tent all of the time.”
Gaining an outsider’s perspective is crucial when considering a deal. “We use Paul to help us break things up, to spark debate and to also dismiss pre-conceptions should they exist. We want him to have his own view point. We encourage him to do so. The viewpoint that Temple brings to us helps avoid the effects of group think.”
The private equity firm engages sector specialists, but they also see a need for generalists. “The Temple guys are not necessarily experts in any particular industry, but we think that’s an advantage. They are able to move across different industries, gain a wider perspective, and bring insights from different fields. That broader experience is really valuable for our purposes.”
The fast turnaround time is also a big advantage of working with Temple. “They have someone else operating at a different time zone to ours effectively giving us 24 hours of work each day. When we need something done quickly, we are confident it can be delivered. Paul is also very flexible. When we needed him at a tradeshow in Germany, he was almost immediately on a plane.”
The Managing Director says that Paul’s ability to build rapport and intuitively understand how his clients function enables him to express his opinions and be respected for it.
“Paul’s style suits ours. His analysis is in-depth, to the point and insightful. His method also forces us to all have an opinion. Temple adds another layer of analytical confidence to our decision making.”
When reflecting on how the private equity firm first started using Temple’s services, the Managing Director recalls that Paul actually approached them first. “He approached us, offering his services. We sat on it for a while but decided that we’d give him a shot when something came up. He had to prove himself, just like everyone that we employ here. And well, he did just that.”