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Workshop 1

M & A Update Series Opportunities and Preparing for Exit

7.30am - 9.30am, Wednesday 13 June 2012, Stamford Plaza, Auckland

From willing buyers and large multiples to HOLD, many business owners tore up their exit plans during the GFC. What is the current state of play? Where are the opportunities? How should businesses prepare for exit? What are the other options? What’s happening to PE ratios and pricing?

A practical session for all M&A market participants, we’ll look at preparing for exit and different strategies in today’s light and will hear from a company that partnered with private equity as part of an alternative and longer-term liquidity strategy: 

  • Different forms of exit
  • Opportunities in this market
  • Pricing and risk
  • The private equity option
  • Process and pitfalls
  • Always be prepared
  • How to get the timing right


Matt Riley
Executive Director, Waterman Capital

Matt Riley has investment and acquisition, capital raising, valuation and corporate restructuring experience over a range of sectors. Matt founded private equity manager Waterman Capital with fellow director Chris Marshall in 2004.

Prior to founding Waterman Matt was an Investment Manager with private equity firm Direct Capital. Over five years he worked on a wide variety of transactions and investments including: investment in direct mail company EziBuy; EziBuy's subsequent acquisition of Myer Direct from Coles Myer; the listing of Ryman Healthcare; the investment management of EFT-POS New Zealand; and a number of other investments within Direct Capital's family of funds.

Prior to joining Direct Capital Matt was Group Financial Controller of London based hedge fund and venture capitalist IFM Asset Management Limited, a subsidiary of Rothschilds & American Insurance Group.

Matt is currently a director of Waterman Holdings Limited, Working In Limited, Guthrie Bowron Limited, David Reid Homes Limited and Express Logistics Group Limited. He is also a Council Member of the NZ Private Equity & Venture Capital Association.

Justin Ensor
Partner, Corporate Finance - KPMG

Justin is a Partner in KPMG’s Transactions & Restructuring team.

He has over 15 years corporate finance experience, with much of this dedicated to assisting successful New Zealand businesses navigate discussions and secure outcomes on value, transitions in ownership and raising capital.

He has initiated and participated in assignments including company mergers and acquisitions, private debt and equity raising and management buy-outs, with the majority of this work focused on the mid market of $5m to $200m enterprise value.

View the interview with Justin Ensor of KPMG here.

Scott Mathieson
Co-founding Director, Working In

Scott co-founded Working In in 1998 after returning from a six year OE in the UK. 

He and his partner Hayley, initially created Working In to help New Zealand employers attract Kiwis returning home and skilled migrants moving to New Zealand.

They founded an expo, the Opportunities New Zealand Expo in London in 2002 and now run 16 exhibitions in cities like Manchester, Aberdeen, Dublin, Calgary, Vancouver, Johannesburg and Santiago.

With offices in London, Sydney and Auckland Working In now assists employers from the UK, Australia, Canada and even Peru find the skills they need in different global locations and in 2009 won the Deloitte Fast 50 fastest growing exporter in the Auckland region. 

In 2011 Working In secured private equity firm Waterman Capital as an equity partner, with a view to expanding its global reach and improving its opportunities in a global market as skills shortages increasingly impact on the bottom line of companies worldwide.