MOULDING THE MASSES

As if learning seven habits of highly effective people wasn't enough, private equity has officially entered the self-help marketplace – albeit for chief executives.

The latest title in Harvard Business Press' “Memo to the CEO” series is Lessons from Private Equity Any Company Can Use, written by two senior Bain & Co. executives.

The compact, 126-page guide outlines six private equity tactics wannabe-successful CEOs should employ: define a company's full potential; develop a blueprint for change; accelerate performance; harness talent; make equity sweat; and foster a results-oriented mindset.

No matter what your feelings are about private equity,” the publisher notes in a press release, “there are three truths that shouldn't be ignored.” These truths won't be so earth-shattering to industry professionals: private equity has become a major force in global financial markets; buyout firms “have set a concrete and inescapable benchmark for global business performance” and earn outsized returns; and every company in existence is potentially for sale.

The book was published in February and is written by Orit Gadiesh, Bain & Co. chairman, and Hugh MacArthur, a partner in Bain & Co.'s global private equity practice.

QUOTABLE
“I saw a sign over here – someone has a t-shirt on, “tax hedge fund dealers”…Well in this economy we are going to have a fair tax system again. A Wall Street investment manager, a hedge fund dealer, should not pay a lower percentage of taxes on his $50 million worth of income.”

US presidential candidate Hillary Clinton addressing supporters at a campaign stop in Ohio last month, apparently referring to the carried interest tax issue, quoted by ABC News.

“It turned out the smartest guys in the room weren't as smart as they thought. In developing the collateralised loan obligation they hadn't developed the goose that laid the golden egg. It turned out they had developed the financial equivalent of an infectious haemorrhoid.”

Jon Moulton of Alchemy Partners as outspoken as ever on the cause of the meltdown in global credit markets. He was speaking on Channel 4 TV programme Dispatches.

“Historically many follow-on deals were funded with debt so the current turmoil in the debt market will make the pursuit of buy and build transactions harder.”

PPM Capital managing partner Neil MacDougall highlights one way in which the problems in the credit markets will affect mid-market investors.

“I knew failing to disclose these filings was wrong. I know I was wrong. I deeply regret it.”

Former Refco chief executive Phillip Bennett, pleading guilty in the Federal District Court of Manhattan to charges including wire fraud, bank fraud, money laundering and making false Securities and Exchange Commission filings during his time at the head of the former TH Lee portfolio company.