Charles Aris Expands Private Equity Recruiting Practice

With limited timeframes in which to provide a return to their investors, private equity firms are under the gun to develop talent fast. That’s putting growing emphasis on top-grading senior leaders.

December 10, 2018 – Greensboro, NC-based executive search firm Charles Aris Inc. recently expanded its professional services offering with the addition of Lucas Durr to its finance and accounting recruiting practice.

Teaming with Jim Etling, who leads the firm’s recruitment services in finance and accounting and serves as its primary practice leader in private equity, Mr. Durr will identify and recruit leaders for private equity portfolio companies in industrial manufacturing. “I am thrilled to work alongside an incredible team at Charles Aris, and with Jim in particular, to expand a thriving practice in an industry I am truly passionate about,” said Mr. Durr.

New to the executive search industry, Mr. Durr most recently served with MassMutual Carolinas in a business exit strategy and continuing planning position. He also spent time in account and tradeshow management for Cellular Sales. With an array of business process experience, Mr. Durr will continue to craft relationships with business leaders around the U.S. and abroad.

“Executive recruitment is a solutions-driven industry,” he said. “My experiences helping clients navigate their key areas of concern are some of my proudest professional accomplishments, and I’m excited to serve in a similar function helping organizations attract and retain A-level finance and accounting leaders,” Mr. Durr said.

Top-Grading Senior Leaders

Mr. Etling said he was excited to have Mr. Durr join the finance and accounting team and that he looked forward to his contributions. “His background, energy and drive will serve him well at Charles Aris as he builds his practice and helps build on our firm’s seven consecutive years of record growth.”

With limited timeframes in which to provide a return to their investors, private equity firms don’t have the luxury of developing talent over long periods of time, said the search firm.

Leadership Crisis Unfolding at Private Equity Firms
According to a coming research report from Hunt Scanlon Media, the private equity sector can expect to see an expanding bidding war for top talent. Driving the trend: persistent global talent shortages across the C-suite. Nearly every industry and function is affected, including finance, healthcare and biotech, digital and technology, among others.

“Leadership is the new bottom line for private equity operating executives seeking top talent for their portfolio businesses,” said Scott A. Scanlon, the firm’s founding chairman and CEO. “The PE sector is in the crosshairs of a widening war for leadership.”

The need to top-grade senior leaders in the portfolio ranks is constant and has never been more vital, it noted.

“We understand that operational excellence is integral to driving value and growth in portfolio investments – and that each investment entails unique operational needs,” said Charles Aris. “We excel at helping client organizations define the ideal blend of operational excellence, transformation expertise, bias for action and cultural change management to drive value in their investments, then deploy targeted methods to find and land top talent to address their specific operational needs.”

In addition to Mr. Etling, Mr. Durr joins vice presidents Caroline Wilson and Sarah Becker within the practice. Ms. Wilson, who leads the company’s private equity recruiting practice serving PE firms, hedge funds and asset management clients, primarily focuses on recruiting current and former management consultants from McKinsey & Company, Bain & Company, and The Boston Consulting Group, as well as other top-tier strategy consulting firms. Ms. Becker, whose focus is on recruiting executives for client organizations in the PE and consumer spaces, served as a vice president in a private equity portfolio furniture company prior to joining the search firm.

All four consultants report into Chad Oakley, who serves as the CEO of Charles Aris and is the search firm’s primary practice leader for strategy and corporate development, with an industry focus on consumer packages goods, industrial manufacturing and financial services. Prior to joining Charles Aris, Mr. Oakley worked as a consultant and case team leader in the Boston practice of Bain & Company. At Bain, he focused on solving strategic challenges for clients in a number of industries including software, telecommunications, optical networking, manufacturing and financial services.

Established nearly 50 years ago, Charles Aris is a search industry pioneer focused on senior-level assignments within the strategy & business development, private equity, consumer/ retail, finance & accounting, sales & marketing, education, executive leadership, engineering & operations, chemicals and agribusiness sectors.

Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor; and Andrew W. Mitchell, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media

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