Emma Peterson, Director FinTech Awards Wales & Finance Awards Wales Meeting:
Corporate Finance Advisory Director of Grant Thornton
To kick off this new 11-part series of “Emma Meets”, Emma Peterson, Director of Recruit 121 Finance & Accounting Solutions, learns more about the sponsors of the upcoming Finance Awards Wales 2022.
Finance Awards Wales is designed to recognise, attract and invest in talented finance professionals working in Wales, showcasing the best of the best in the finance industry. In this edition, Emma meets Jamie Roberts, Corporate Finance Advisory Director of Grant Thornton.
Tell me about yourself and your career to date?
I am the Chief Financial Officer of Grant Thornton in Wales and advise dynamic businesses and their owners on creating and realizing business value.
I have experience in a wide range of middle market transactions including MBOs, acquisitions, divestitures, fundraising and strategic planning, and have enjoyed working with a diverse portfolio of clients in sectors such as healthcare, logistics, consumer, technology, recruitment and more.
Can you tell me about your company and what you do?
We provide business advice to owners and their businesses. We are very approachable, insightful and additive. We seek to build long-term, sustainable relationships which, along with our expertise and insight, are essential to the success of our business. We are of a size where the customer is always visible – you don’t get swallowed up by a huge corporate machine.
Across the UK, we have 4,500 people operating from 27 offices, led by 190 partners who are all focused on delivering exceptional customer service.
In our South West and Wales offices, we have 300 diverse people, led by an experienced team of 10 partners and 16 directors.
What was the biggest challenge the company faced and how did you respond?
The company still pursues its commitment to quality, to ensure that it stays ahead of the market.
Quality remains our top priority and is increasingly becoming a driver in our clients’ decision to work with us, as they recognize the benefits of our continued investment in skills and talent. We recently recruited a record number of newcomers to Wales and the South West, with 26 graduates and graduate trainees now embarking on a path that will see them integrate our audit and tax practices.
We are continually looking for ways to improve and develop in order to be in the best position to meet the objectives of our customers. The steps we have taken represent an investment in our structures, our people and our future, and as the dynamics of the audit market continue to evolve, our quality will help us continue to attract the right talent and good clients in our firm.
How do you think the Welsh economy will perform over the next 12 months?
As job postings hit record highs in November, the “Great Resignation” has made the fight for talent among organizations fierce. Every two months, we ask business leaders across the country to tell us about their expectations and priorities for the future.
People are at the heart of any organization and it follows that one of the main challenges in Wales is attracting and retaining talent. Grant Thornton understands this challenge well and is very focused on talent. There’s definitely a culture of empowerment here that our team appreciates and is attractive in the market – it’s one of the top factors people cite when they join our team.
Today’s job seekers consider a much broader picture when deciding where to work, and a company’s overall employer brand and offering has never been more important. People place much more importance on aspects of the employee proposition, such as long-term development opportunities, workplace culture, employer focus on well-being, inclusion and diversity.
What plans do you have for your business in 2022?
I am immensely proud of what the company has achieved over the past few years and the real momentum we have generated moving forward. I know the renewed sense of confidence and pride in the company is shared by all of our employees and we are well positioned for our next phase of growth.
We will continue to renew our focus on our core markets, improving our approach to quality and uniting our people around a common goal of “doing the right thing before the easy thing”.
We have a team of over 100 people who advise on mid-market mergers and acquisitions nationwide, with a focus on key sectors and regions – Wales and the South West being one of them, it is therefore important that we continue to invest in the best talent to continue to provide the highest possible levels of service as our customers seek to explore and realize the opportunities presented by the current business environment. Mergers and Acquisitions.
While there are challenges in some parts of the economy, there is also plenty of liquidity with private equity investors and companies looking for high-quality assets in the consumer, technology, and consumer sectors. , food and drink, human capital and health in particular.
Why did you choose to sponsor the Finance Awards Wales 2022?
We have sponsored the Finance Awards Wales since its inception. Looking back to the last year, it is hard to recall a period in time when finance professionals from all walks of life were called upon to demonstrate such a high level of resilience, ingenuity and adaptability for our industries to transform, endure and prosper. as they did. It is important that the best finance professionals are recognized for their contribution and that is why we are very proud to sponsor the Finance Awards again this year.
If you’ve sponsored the awards before, what were your highlights from last year’s ceremony?
We have sponsored previously and this was one of the first large-scale face-to-face events held since restrictions began to ease during the pandemic. It was joyful to be back in the room, physically interacting safely and within guidelines and networking with other Welsh finance professionals. The business community in Wales is all about connecting with people and forging strong, personal relationships. The Finance Awards Wales connect with people, finance leaders with ideas and innovation, and businesses with opportunity. It is both an evening for connecting organizations and sharing inspiration.