People: The latest West Midlands hires

James Chapman Andrews - Partner and UK Head of Technology, Andy Currie - Managing Partner, Oliver Parker - Partner - Technology

Birmingham-based Alantra, the global mid-market investment banking specialist, has appointed Oliver Parker as a partner and key member of its global technology sector team.

Parker has more than 15 years of M&A experience across the technology sector and has worked on over 40 transactions for clients in the UK and across Europe.

His appointment further strengthens Alantra’s global technology team, which has completed over 30 deals in the last 12 months.

Parker joins from Arma Partners, where he focused on software and IT services. Prior to Arma Partners, he was a member of the technology team at William Blair.

Notable recent transactions include advising on the acquisition of Totalmobile by Bowmark Capital, the sale of Contino to Cognizant and the sale of Masternaut to Michelin.

As a key member of Alantra’s global technology sector team, Parker will work closely with business owners and management teams in the software and IT services sub-sectors as well as financial sponsors, generating off-market opportunities, providing buy-side advice and maximising value in sale processes.

James Chapman-Andrews, partner and UK technology lead at Alantra, said: “We are delighted that Oliver has joined Alantra. Technology is one of the most active sectors globally for M&A and this is certainly reflected in our activity with Alantra’s global technology team completing more than 30 deals over the last 12 months. The team is strategically located across key technology markets worldwide, ensuring deep sector expertise is combined with local senior-led transaction advice on all our mandates.

“This marries well with the needs of our technology clients and Oliver brings significant industry and transaction expertise to the team. We are absolutely committed to attracting the highest quality talent and investing behind our people as we grow the Alantra business both in the UK and globally.”


Accountancy and business advisory firm BDO has appointed senior corporate finance specialist Drew Johnson to head up a new Asset Based Lending (ABL) Advisory service.

He joins as director from PNC Business Credit – a large US financial institution, where he worked as a business development director originating, structuring and executing large SME, mid-market ABL transactions, ranging from £1m to £150m. He has 20 years of corporate finance and banking experience.

Based in the Midlands, he will take on a national role sitting across Corporate Finance, Debt Advisory and Business Restructuring. He will be responsible for advising UK mid-market corporates on accessing ABL debt and refinancing solutions to help facilitate M&As, MBOs, MBIs, recapitalisation, restructuring and growth.

Richard Rose, partner and head of BDO in the Midlands, said: “We’re delighted to welcome Drew to the BDO Midlands team. He brings an incredible amount of ABL expertise to the firm and will play an important role in helping to shape our new ABL Advisory service into a successful advisory offering.
“With significant experience sitting bank-side winning, structuring and executing large ABL deals, Drew will be perfectly placed to help clients navigate the raft of alternative lenders and structures available in the market and advise them through the process, to ensure they have the most appropriate solution that’s right for their business.”


Birmingham-based Anthony Collins Solicitors (ACS) has announced a raft of promotions, including appointing three new partners.

The new partners include David Evison who joined the firm as a trainee solicitor in 2008 – now helping oversee ACS’ personal injury and clinical negligence (PI/CN) work.

Emma Hardman, who joined ACS in 2008, also becomes a partner, leading the firm’s housing management and Right to Buy teams.

Sarah Patrice’s promotion to partner also follows a 20-year career at the social purpose law firm, where she now leads its governance and commercial team, working across sectors such as housing, charities and social business.
Peter Hubbard, senior partner at Anthony Collins Solicitors, said: “The success of Anthony Collins Solicitors is only possible due to the expertise and spirit of our staff. David, Emma and Sarah have all built strong careers at the firm – leading their respective teams while providing quality support to our client partners.

“In their new roles, David, Emma and Sarah will play a key role in driving the firm’s social purpose mission forward, supporting our growth and ability to continue improving lives communities and society.”

ACS has also made 10 other promotions, with Sarah Huntbach and Alex Tindall becoming legal directors within the firm’s PI/CN and property teams. In ACS’ private client practice, Andrew Crumpton and Doug Houghton have both been promoted to senior associates, with Kelly Brown also appointed to an associate.

In its corporate litigation team, Richard Burton has become a senior associate, with Rhys Baker promoted to associate. Hannah Bollard also moves to associate in the firm’s employment and pensions team, with Penny Bournes and Martin Brown also promoted to associate in ACS’ property and construction teams.


McCann Central has boosted its management board with the promotion of Ruepal Aujla to the newly created role of group diversity and inclusion officer.

Aujla joined McCann Birmingham ten years ago so brings a wealth of knowledge and experience about the agency, people and its clients to the role. She will add this new responsibility to her current role as managing partner within media.

Dean Lovett, McCann Central CEO, said: “Ruepal has already been a genuine asset in helping to drive positive change and create conditions of belonging throughout the business. Along with members of our Conscious Inclusion Councils, which she chairs, and guided by input from all of our employees, she has successfully steered our DE&I approach into the all-encompassing programme it is today. I’ve no doubt that under Ruepal’s leadership, we will continue to make further enhancements in this important area, and I am delighted to welcome her to the McCann Central Management Board.”