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Why do political and ESG due diligence go together?

Politics and ESG (environmental, social & governance) are natural bed fellows. But they are rarely treated as such, particularly in the diligence process. GK Strategy is the only consultancy offering ESG due diligence (DD) services and political, policy & regulatory due diligence (PDD.) Why do these disciplines belong together? And why should investors see them as two sides of the same coin? Why should companies consider their political and regulatory risks and...

Private Equity: a look ahead in times of uncertainty

With political uncertainty at an all-time high and asset prices sky rocketing, some investors are acting with caution, but should they be? Private equity veteran, Tim Farazmand, discusses what to expect from the sector over the next financial year and how investors should navigate the challenging landscape. What are the biggest challenges and threats facing the private equity market right now? The amount of dry powder is causing fierce competition, which is...

Has the bell rung for last orders on cheap alcohol?

In January, Ireland called last orders on the sale of cheap alcohol as health minister, Simon Harris, communicated his intention to implement a minimum unit price ‘as soon as possible’. It will join Scotland and – later this year – Wales in putting a floor on the price of alcohol in a bit to reduce harmful drinking. While plans to introduce a minimum unit price in England were dropped in 2012, the government has said it is keeping an eye on Scotland’s experience, suggesting that the...

Casual Dining and Private Equity Investment

According to a recent report published by the Centre for Retail Research, a staggering 10,000 workers in Britain’s casual dining market lost their jobs during 2018. This shocking statistic comes even though, since 2010, the casual dining market has experienced huge growth, with a 16% increase in the number of restaurants, according to real estate adviser Altus. In more recent years, private equity has taken advantage of this...

GK’s 10 year anniversary and lessons learned

As GK celebrates its tenth anniversary, I’m incredibly proud of where the business is now. Our timing was awful when we started this business, just as financial Armageddon hit in 2009. I gave up my job at a well-established Public Affairs company and joined my business partner Luke Kennedy to begin the GK journey. Fast forward ten years and GK has 30 staff, we have worked with a multitude of clients, we’ve successfully expanded our service offering...

Social Housing: the end of private equity involvement?

Over the last year, GK have provided political, policy and regulatory risk analysis advice on several deals across the housing sector, ranging from the private rented sector to social housing. This increase in deal flow in the sector reflects that in recent years, private investment has plugged a much-needed gap in the affordable housing supply. In light of Theresa May’s announcement at the

Lessons from payday lending for other financial service providers

Consumer credit is booming in the UK, topping £200 billion for the first time since the financial crisis. Almost half of men and women under 30 regularly use credit to stretch their finances until payday. And a quarter of them are constantly in debt. One in ten have used a payday loan company. The sector has stepped up its marketing since the regulatory clampdown in 2015, when...

The build to rent sector – can it solve the housing crisis?

As the Government continues their efforts to tackle the housing crisis, we look at the potential of Build to Rent models and how they can help ease the housing crisis. Build to Rent (BTR) homes are built at scale for the primary purpose of being rented long-term. The sector is expanding rapidly, with 80,855 BTR homes either completed or planned according to the latest figures. The industry estimates investment in the sector could grow to £70 billion by 2022, providing a...