August 23, 2021 – H.I.G. Capital, a global alternative investment firm with $45 billion of equity capital under management, has acquired Oxford Global Resources, a provider of specialty staffing and consulting services in the U.S. and Europe, from ASGN Incorporated. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. “We are very excited to partner with Rob McGuckin and the entire Oxford team,” said Matt Lozow, managing director at H.I.G. “As companies are facing increasingly complex technical and regulatory requirements across life sciences, IT and engineering, we believe Oxford is uniquely positioned to be the partner of choice to help clients address such challenges.”
Headquartered in Beverly, MA, Oxford offers on-demand, high-end consulting talent serving over 2,200 active clients across the U.S. and Europe. The firm, founded in 1984, offers a differentiated service to its clients, focused on providing hard-to-find, highly specialized technical talent in several niche practice areas, including information technology, engineering, life sciences, and healthcare technology.
“Oxford is a market leader offering a compelling value proposition to its clients across the United States and Europe,” said Rob Jang, managing director at H.I.G. “We believe there is significant opportunity ahead for Oxford and we look forward to working with the Oxford team to build upon their success and continue to enhance the company’s leadership position in the market.”
“We are thrilled to enter into this new chapter with H.I.G. Capital,” said Mr. McGuckin, Oxford Global Resources president and CEO. “We have numerous opportunities for expansion and the partnership with H.I.G. will enable us to accelerate growth through continued investment in our team, capabilities and service offering. We remain committed to providing outstanding services to our customers, as well as outstanding opportunities for our consultants, and we look forward to working with H.I.G. to support our next phase of growth.”
A group of private investors led by majority partner CTR Group, a Virginia-based, family-owned employment services firm, has completed its acquisition of RM Nephew & Associates, an executive search firm headquartered in Boston.
Hunt Scanlon Ventures facilitated the transaction. RM Nephew and Associates, with offices in Boston and New York, offers partnership-driven solutions to business leadership and recruitment challenges for a premier list of clients, primarily in the healthcare, technology, and professional services sectors.
Wells Fargo Securities, LLC acted as exclusive financial advisor and Ropes & Gray LLP acted as legal counsel to H.I.G. William Blair and Truist Securities acted as financial advisors and Sullivan & Cromwell LLP served as legal counsel to ASGN.
Investing in Search Firms
H.I.G. is a global alternative assets investment firm with $45 billion of equity capital under management. Based in Miami, and with offices in New York, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Atlanta as well as international affiliate offices in London, Hamburg, Madrid, Milan, Paris, Bogotá, Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo, H.I.G. specializes in providing both debt and equity capital to small and mid-sized companies, utilizing a flexible and operationally focused/ value-added approach.
Since its founding in 1993, H.I.G. has invested in and managed more than 300 companies worldwide. The firm’s current portfolio includes more than 100 companies with combined sales in excess of $30 billion.
“PE’s recognition of the all-important role that human capital plays in making portfolio companies successful is a major reason why PE investors have become increasingly interested in recruiting firms and staffing companies as an investment,” said Scott A. Scanlon, co-founder and CEO of Hunt Scanlon Media and leader of the company’s M&A ventures platform. Hunt Scanlon Ventures is actively engaged with 18 firms across the talent management sector – some seeking a merger partner, some looking for growth capital, while others are seeking direct private equity investment, or looking to run a process. “And, of course, we have direct lines to the buyers,” he said.
“Private equity firms know that top talent is a key lever in their investments. Plain and simple – talent drives value,” said Mr. Scanlon. “And, so, PE already understands the value of search and staffing firms; they get it. They are now buying into the tremendous growth runway that we see ahead,” he added.
The seller, ASGN Incorporated based in Glen Allen, VA, is a New York Stock Exchange company considered a top provider of IT and professional services in the technology, digital, creative, healthcare technology, engineering, life sciences, and government sectors. The firm entered into a purchase agreement on June 30 to sell Oxford Global Resources to an affiliate of H.I.G. Capital for $525 million in cash. Oxford accounted for approximately 11.5 percent of ASGN’s consolidated revenues and roughly 10.75 percent of ASGN’s adjusted EBITDA for the three months ended March 31, 2021.
“The sale of Oxford represents a pivotal moment for ASGN,” said ASGN president and CEO Ted Hanson. Mr. Hanson said he took the opportunity to sell Oxford as the global economy improves and “the M&A market remains productive.” ASGN enjoys a market cap of $5.58 billion.
Acquisitions and consolidations continue to make news in the recruiting industry, with a number of notable purchases in recent months. Here is a sampling from the Hunt Scanlon Media archives:
Orlando, FL-headquartered healthcare-focused search firm Kirby Bates Associates (KBA) and Tyler & Company have merged business operations. The unified organization will operate under the Kirby Bates Associates brand. “Tyler & Company offers an exciting opportunity for Kirby Bates to strengthen its service and scope in healthcare executive leadership,” said Melissa A. Fitzpatrick, president of Kirby Bates Associates and Tyler & Company. “With its range of high-profile clients and service expertise, Tyler & Company’s complementary offerings are highly aligned to Kirby Bates’ strategy to lead the market by expanding services throughout the C-suite and across the continuum of care.”
Executive search firm ZRG has acquired Walking the Talk, a consulting and advisory firm focused on culture transformation. Hunt Scanlon Ventures facilitated the introduction and transaction between both organizations. Walking the Talk, headquartered in Amsterdam, specializes in enhancing performance results by aligning culture with strategy. Since the company was established 11 years ago, culture has landed firmly on the agenda of most executive teams and boards of directors.
A group of private investors led by majority partner CTR Group, a Virginia-based, family-owned employment services firm, has completed its acquisition of RM Nephew & Associates, an executive search firm headquartered in Boston, MA. Hunt Scanlon Ventures facilitated the introduction and the transaction. RM Nephew and Associates, with offices in Boston and New York, offers partnership-driven solutions to business leadership and recruitment challenges for a premier list of clients, primarily in the healthcare, technology, and professional services sectors.
Riviera Partners, a recruitment provider specializing in C-level engineering, product and design leader placements, has acquired Arete Partners. The Arete Partners team will form the foundation of Riviera Ventures and build upon its focus on Seed-to-B stage VC-backed startups. Eóin O’ Toole, co-founder and CEO of Arete Partners, will lead the new Riviera Ventures unit. Over the course of the past six years, Arete Partners has placed executive talent for Seed-to-B stage companies with “an understanding that the earliest leadership hires are of critical importance if startups are to reach their full potential,” Riviera Partners said in a statement.
Caldwell has signed an agreement to acquire IQTalent Partners. “For 50 years, Caldwell has been connecting clients with transformational talent. With this merger, we are setting our sights on transforming the world of talent,” said John Wallace, chief executive officer. “IQTalent Partners’ unique service model and innovative use of technology, paired with Caldwell’s expertise, network and resources will allow us to serve our clients in a more integrated fashion and allow us to have a greater impact on their long-term success, which remains our primary mandate.” Founded in 2009, IQTalent Partners provides talent acquisition solutions to 300 corporations from Fortune 500s to startups across a wide range of industries and functions throughout North America, Europe, Australia, Asia, and South America.
Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; and Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media