Awards for Excellence 2012: Best Independent Investment Bank
The firm’s business model, enshrining independence from product pushing, has flourished and Ondra’s name now crops up again and again on transformational deals.
Best Independent Investment Bank: Ondra Partners
Also nominated: Lazard and Jefferies & Co
Benoit d’Angelin, former co-head of European investment banking at Lehman Brothers, and Michael Tory, former head of UK investment banking at the US firm, founded Ondra Partners in the depths of the financial crisis in 2008. Michael Baldock, who ran the healthcare team at HSBC, soon joined. Ondra now has 12 partners, with a range of specializations, including capital markets as well as M&A. Malcolm Stewart recently joined from Citigroup, bringing 30 years of experience in leveraged finance and high yield.
Their business proposition is hardly unique: to offer clients truly independent advice, in contrast to the large banks, which need to sell products. But Ondra hit on an ingeniously simple business model to make this oft-touted notion a reality. It charges clients a retainer fee. If Ondra’s judgment is that it is best not to do a deal, it has no financial incentive to advise otherwise. The firm is consistently profitable.
Ondra has a small number of clients, just a handful per partner.