Case Study

Cleantech CEO Restructuring

Boyden Interim Management helps a private equity firm in an emergency situation to stabilize and reposition a portfolio company.

By Georg Larch

The Client 

A medium-sized private equity-led clean tech company unexpectedly ran into difficulties. The forecasts required revising and the banks informed. The expected positive result turned into a significant loss.

Confidence of the investors and banks had thus been called into question. Therefore, it was decided to appoint an external and experienced interim manager to bring calm to a difficult situation.  He was brought on-board to create transparency and improve the company’s future, while working with the family, who continued to control the majority of the company.

The Challenge 

The PE company had a minority shareholding and therefore only limited rights of co-determination. The company had grown over many years and reliably delivered positive figures, though the positive development concealed failures in the operational area.

Due to the positive development, the company invested in a new and state-of-the-art plant, which was also to cover further growth. Upon completion, the market was in a consolidation phase and the plant was too large for the current business volume.

Unfortunately, the internal structure was not adapted to the new requirements. For example, there was no sufficient data basis for important decisions. In Operations, too little know-how was developed for the increasingly complex processes. Sales failed to keep pace with international market developments. Open unpaid invoices were not followed up with sufficient consistency and therefore led to strained liquidity.

After many years of positive business development, the family entrepreneur saw the company's existence threatened.

The Solution 

The Results 

The highly experienced and crisis-proof interim manager was able to help stabilize the company. The threat of insolvency was averted.

The confidence of the banks was regained as a result of the measures taken and their consistent implementation. Unpaid invoices were consistently collected. Financing partners were identified and involved in new customer projects. 

Many individual measures in SCM, operations and sales improved the company's operating performance. The many projects initiated led to a significant improvement in earnings. Through an investor, better access to the emerging Asian market was found and liquidity was further strengthened.

Contract manufacturing was used to optimize capacity utilization at the new plant until increased sales activities made it possible to increase capacity utilization with the company's own products.

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