Following from last month, the Assay Q&A returns for August with this month’s star being Mike Simson. Mike is a co-founder of Assay Corporate Finance.


Tell us about how the first half of 2018 has gone for you.

2018 has been a frustrating year so far. Business thrives in periods of certainty but there is so much apprehension in the market, which politician’s just seem unable or unwilling to understand.

What can people expect from Assay for the rest of this year?

We have been developing and refining products which help our clients and potential clients plan in such periods of uncertainty. Our Brexit algorithm is now fully developed which allows companies to analyse what impact Brexit will have on their business. We are also widening the scope of this tool to include other types of political risk. We are about to release version two of our Equity Acceleration Plan which is very exciting. It now includes an interactive element to the valuation driver which allows clients to understand how mitigating risks and exploiting the “growth accelerators”  in their business will impact the valuation.

What deal are you most proud of?

I am particularly proud of the sale of Coach in a Box to Swedish listed consultancy, BTS. This was a complex transaction with many elements to the transaction beyond the headline price. I was pleased with the value add I and my team were able to provide the clients.

Whats the strangest thing thats happened to you on a transaction recently?

In most deals you will hit a crisis point and the transaction gets to right to the cliff edge before the parties see sense and draw back from the precipice. I recently did a deal where everything worked according to plan – that was strange.

Do you have an industry focus or speciality?

I specialise in Human Capital businesses, which includes consultancy, recruitment and professional services businesses.

What non work related achievement are you most proud of?

I am most proud of my three children and the success they are already making in their short careers.

What’s the first thing you would do if you won the lottery tomorrow?

Take a few months off to travel the globe and play all of the top 100 golf courses in the world.

Who would you say is your hero?

Nelson Mandela

What’s the worst job you have ever done?

My compulsory National Service in the South African army after leaving school.

What is your favourite food or restaurant?

There is a little restaurant in SW London called Dastaan which serves the freshest Indian food I have ever tasted. You have to book weeks in advance to get a table but it’s certainly the effort.

When you are not at Assay what do you like to do to relax?

Play golf