Bespoke Partners Adds Leaders for New Private Equity Client Services Program
April 21, 2023 – San Diego, CA-headquartered executive search firm Bespoke Partners has brought aboard Jessica Larson and Matt Sommi to lead the firm’s new private equity client services program. These new leaders will be expected to partner with clients to tailor Bespoke’s service offerings in talent advisory, executive search, curated network access, and leadership advisory to achieve the clients’ human capital goals.
“Talent is by far the most critical factor for a private equity portfolio company to achieve the investment thesis,” said Eric Walczykowski, Bespoke Partners’ CEO. “Our client services program enables private equity firms to analyze their human capital needs and tune our services to maximize the impact of talent on their growth goals. Jessica and Matt bring unmatched expertise and insight to working with highly successful private equity firms to generate outsized returns.”
Ms. Larson joins as senior vice president of private equity. She has 20 years of experience in tailoring high-value professional services for clients in private equity, finance, and related sectors. Ms. Larson previously held a senior role at GLG focusing on financial sector clients, and in an earlier leadership role she drove engagement for GLG’s services across all private equity and public sector companies in the western U.S. region.
“I’m excited to join an organization known as the preeminent leadership advisory and executive search firm in our industry,” said Ms. Larson. “I’m passionate about showing clients how Bespoke’s unique services empower them to execute on value creation plans more effectively.”
Mr. Sommi joins Bespoke as vice president of private equity. He previously spent eight years in research and business development at GLG, supporting private equity due diligence efforts and orchestrating successful projects for GLG’s middle market private equity firms.
“I’ve seen firsthand how access to external talent and expertise can accelerate growth and achievement of the investment thesis for a private equity firm,” said Mr. Sommi. “I’m thrilled to work with our clients to ensure they maximize the impact of human capital on their portfolio companies.”
Related: Bespoke Partners Launches Strategic Resourcing Group to Serve PE Outfits
Ms. Larson and Mr. Sommi join Bespoke Partners as the firm recently launched its Strategic Resourcing Group (SRG), providing curated access to a talent network of the software industry’s most accomplished executives. The service cuts months off the time to recruit world-class leadership by supplying real-time visibility into the leadership talent market and on-demand introductions to actionable executives. SRG proactively provides vetted slates of actionable executives to private equity firms to accelerate recruiting of leadership talent for their portfolio companies.
A Deep Network
“You will solve your next executive leadership search before you start it,” said Mr. Walczykowski. “We know the executives who can achieve an investment thesis based on our unparalleled success in private equity human capital advisory. Our curated SRG slates bring you leaders with technical skills, interpersonal skills, and leadership acumen to drive your portfolio company to an on-target exit.”
The SRG service draws from Bespoke’s network of software and SaaS executives, built over a decade of working with thousands of candidates and 90 percent of the most active private equity software investors.
Demand for Top Talent in the Private Equity Sector Continues
While financial engineering, inorganic growth, and market expansion remain important tools in the private equity toolbox, talent has emerged as key to growing companies and achieving the investment thesis, according to a newly released report from Bespoke Partners. Yet unlike strategic assets, intellectual property, or other resources that fuel growth, talent can be notoriously difficult to optimize. Bespoke Partners’ report is designed to help private equity partners and the leaders in their portfolio companies understand essential talent market trends based on granular data from the sector.
The private equity sector is on the downside of a historic surge in deal volume, according to the Bespoke Partners’ report. “The talent market for private equity portfolio companies has experienced profound impacts from that surge as well as the pandemic-induced disruption that immediately preceded it,” the report said. “As 2022 drew to a close, the Fed’s aggressive interest rate hikes and volatility in company valuations contributed to a sharp curtailing in private equity deal volume began to ease what was the tightest talent market in recent memory. These factors form the backdrop for the trends in the talent market for private equity portfolio firms in the software and SaaS sectors.”
To read Bespoke Partners’ full Private Equity Talent Benchmark report please click here!
“Private equity firms using SRG will instantly understand talent trends and availability, far in advance of others, enabling them to quickly land leaders who execute on value creation plans for portfolio companies,” the search firm said. “Due diligence teams can now incorporate real-time visibility into available leadership talent for new deals and accelerate post-deal value creation through rapid team buildouts. Private equity firms will be able to quickly evaluate talent availability during the portfolio company hold period when new leadership is needed.”
Recruiting PE Software Talent
Bespoke Partners is an executive search and leadership advisory firm dedicated to partnering with top private equity firms, including Francisco Partners, Clearlake Capital, WCAS, Insight Partners, GI Partners, General Atlantic, CVC Capital Partners, and TA Associates, among many others, to recruit software talent and assess and evaluate teams at every stage of the investment lifecycle, from growth equity to buyout. Bespoke Partners is headquartered in San Diego and operates other regional offices in Austin, TX, and Philadelphia.
The search firm has completed over 600 searches since its inception a decade ago. Its expertise includes all C-level searches across multiple functional domains, including financial officers, HR and people, marketing and technology, as well as board of directors and internal private equity operating partner searches. The firm’s expanding leadership advisory platform includes organizational due diligence as well as executive assessment and coaching.
Related: Bespoke Partners Expands Go-to-Market Practice
Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; and Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media