UK - Midlands Archives - The IFT


The UK’s largest Business Recovery Services (BRS) practice.

With almost a thousand staff in twenty-four offices, PricewaterhouseCoopers is the UK’s largest business recovery services (BRS) practice, providing advisory services to lenders, creditors, companies and individuals in troubled financial situations.

Colleagues in the firm pool knowledge from tax and assurance to advisory, ensuring clients are given the specialist situational knowledge needed to make the right decisions.

Playfair Partnerships

Playfair Partnerships are a small boutique firm, operating across Home Counties, South-east and South-west England to provide business turnaround services to owner-managed organisations. We operate exclusively in the SME world – very different to large corporates – and in addition to addressing business concerns, we provide a full financial management service – including essential forecasting and cash management tasks – both during and after a turnaround.

Our Vision
We are passionate about working with owner-managers to help guide, protect and develop their businesses. Our goal is to provide a high-quality service, fusing together the best of business advice and financial management in one seamless offering.

Our History
Playfair Partnerships was formed in 1992 to offer owner-managers high-level cost-effective business and financial advice. Initially focusing exclusively on business turnarounds, our service offering developed as clients came out of their turnaround stage and sought business growth, strategic and financial management support.

As we worked closely with our clients, we have developed our team, contacts and service offering to provide a comprehensive support package to them, and in turn, they have come to value not just our financial expertise, but our wider strategic business counsel.

Many clients, banks, professional advisors and other partners have since chosen us as their long-standing trusted advisor, enhancing our reputation and growing our track record for high-quality services and advice.

Our Approach
With over 25 years of industry experience, we have faced just about every challenge our clients are likely to encounter. Along the way, we have developed sharp business instincts and analytical skills enabling us to seize opportunities, as well as spot and resolve issues.

We are there to ascertain what has gone wrong and why, and then to work with the business owner to determine solutions and help implement them. Along the way, we will provide financial control and manage the cash – the latter an essential ingredient, as without cash, the business won’t survive.

We can then sign off, or quite often, continue to provide support to the owner after a successful turnaround, as it enters its next stage(s).

Playfair Partnerships IFT Associate Members

Simon Playfair, Managing Partner, Playfair Partnerships

You can find Simon’s CV here


Richard Cranstone, Partner, Playfair Partnerships

You can find Richard’s CV here

Lloyds Banking Group

Lloyds Banking Group has approximately 1 million business customers, of all shapes and sizes; from start-ups and small owner-managed businesses; through to large, multinational and quoted corporations. The Group’s purpose is to help Britain prosper and we want to help all our business customers to grow and fulfil their ambitions.


We recognise, however, that a business’s trajectory is rarely if ever uninterrupted growth and at different points in its life cycle there might be tougher periods that can test a business’s resilience or which might even place its very future in peril. In those moments, it is perhaps even more important that we are by the side of our business customers and our specialist Business Support Unit is on hand to support the turnaround of all viable businesses for the benefit of our customers, stakeholders and the wider community.


The Business Support Unit works closely with customers in financial difficulty to establish clear and timely turnaround strategies with the aim of returning customers to financial health. Our approach is clearly defined and we supported the development of the IFT Statement of Principles.


Our approach is empathetic and consensual, and we take each customer’s individual circumstances into account and deploy strategies that are bespoke to the individual business’s needs. Our team provide national and regional coverage, reflective of the businesses and communities we support. Our experienced team have built up sector expertise and we have also dedicated teams focused on particular sectors, such as Agriculture. We continually review and enhance our approach to supporting all our customers, to ensure we provide the optimum support for those in financial difficulty.


Where a turnaround is not possible, our team work with customers to explore alternative options and solutions. Insolvency is always considered only as the last resort. Where a business is not viable or an insolvency event occurs, our independent Recoveries team works with customers to agree repayment plans and a way forward.


We take pride and satisfaction in helping customers back onto a sounder financial footing and we have a strong record of supporting business turnaround, with 80% of businesses that come into the Business Support Unit either returning to the mainstream coverage team or refinancing elsewhere. At the heart of our ethos is the knowledge that when we achieve a successful outcome we are helping to preserve businesses and jobs and that this is in turn helps Britain to prosper.


Delivering successful change in challenged situations

Kingsgate is a well-established turnaround and transformation consultancy delivering successful change for organisations in challenged or difficult situations.

We understand how to improve results in demanding environments by designing and delivering a range of bespoke solutions in all stages of turnaround to organisation-wide transformation and have successfully applied our expertise in the private and public sectors. We hold a particularly strong record and reputation within the NHS.

Kingsgate’s experienced team consists of a varied background of board roles in the corporate environment, non-executive directorships and blue-chip management consultancy. This gives us a valuable and unique combination of breadth and depth, a genuine know-how backed by first class intellectual and analytical capability. We have strong relationships with other specialists whose skills complement our own.

Our assignments include supporting some very challenging situations. Applying a no-nonsense style to fixing problems, we underpin our enviable track record of increasing the value of businesses with analytical rigour and a methodical approach.

Grant Thornton

Leading financial and business adviser

As a leading financial and business adviser Grant Thornton UK LLP has offices in thirty locations nationwide and more than 25,000 individual and 15,000 corporate and institutional clients.

It is a member firm within Grant Thornton International, one of the world’s leading international organisations of independently owned and managed accounting and consulting firms. Clients of member and correspondent firms can access the knowledge and experience of more than 2400 partners in over a hundred countries and consistently receive a distinctive, high quality and personalised service wherever they choose to do business.

On 1 July, 2007 Grant Thornton merged with RSM Robson Rhodes, establishing a new breed of financial advisory firm. This has created a specific niche, offering clients a new way of working, becoming a flexible, responsive business with the breadth and depth of skills to appeal to a variety of markets and the experience, knowledge and expertise to undertake highly specialised, sector-specific business.

Grant Thornton has always positioned itself as a market leader in terms of service and value and going forwards it pledges to continue to provide the best value advice the industry has to offer. Clients have access to senior staff, and are kept up-to-date with key business developments and news as it happens.
This is undoubtedly an exciting time for Grant Thornton and the company is investing in its business to ensure it maintains its position as the industry’s “thought leaders.” The infrastructure of the business is stronger than ever, both on national and international levels. It is large enough to take on the most demanding or specialist business, but operate in a flexible and responsive way which allows it to take on project work and offer bespoke services. Grant Thornton remains committed to advising the entrepreneurs and privately held businesses which are at the heart of the company’s offering.

Whatever the industry, the business furnishes experienced and expert staff committed to the success of each client’s work, always focusing on Grant Thornton’s working principle of adding value wherever possible.

Gateley Legal

Gateley Legal is a leading, full service national law firm –

Our partner-led teams provide solutions-driven, high quality commercial legal advice, and work to promote the interests of our clients in the UK and beyond.
In 2015, Gateley Plc became the first English commercial law firm to list on the London Stock Exchange.

Our offices
We have a comprehensive network of UK offices. We have offices in Birmingham, Leeds, Leicester, London, Manchester, Nottingham and Reading, as well as an international office in Dubai. We operate as one firm across these offices. Our network of offices means that we can deliver our services wherever they are needed and in a cost effective manner.

Our clients
We regularly act for turnaround and transformation specialists, boards of directors, investors and other key stakeholders.
Our corporate clients include SMEs, mid-market companies and large multi-nationals. The structure of our business means that we can deal with both small local assignments and large complex assignments. We also have expertise in all sectors.

Our people
We have experienced legal advisers based in each of our offices who have worked with turnaround and transformation specialists for many years. Many of our lawyers are ranked as leading individuals by independent researchers.

What we do
We provide our clients with clear, robust advice and we provide a pro-active service. We provide both quality and value for money.

We advise on:
• Acquisitions, disposals, mergers and joint ventures
• Commercial contracts
• Corporate structures, simplification and streamlining
• Directors‘ duties and corporate governance
• Employee contracts, consultation and redundancies
• Financial and operational restructuring
• Investigations, claims, dispute resolution and problem solving
• Risk, regulatory issues, supply chain management and contingency planning
• Solvent and insolvent business sales and exits.


Award-winning accountancy firm

The global accountancy and consulting market is principally made up of homogeneous international organisations and small-scaled local players. BDO is neither but offers the advantages of both. We offer the flexibility, expertise, closeness and personal service of a local organisation together with the quality, professional expertise, strength and reputation of a long-established international network. The best of both worlds.

BDO’s Business Restructuring team works with businesses that are facing financial and operational difficulties or potentially insolvency. Whenever possible, we will look to return a business to health and success. We will work with the management team and other stakeholders to identify the best possible outcome. We have a commercial approach to preserving value, finding efficiencies and improving business performance.

Our clients include companies and their directors, domestic and international banks, pension funds, private equity, alternative investment funds and government agencies.

Our team consists of over 200 staff across the UK. Internationally, we are a key member of the BDO global network that operates in 162 countries. Our partners have also spent time working in industry and in other jurisdictions. They have developed a strong understanding of business.

We cover a range of areas including;

• Corporate Insolvency
• Contentious Insolvency
• Restructuring Advisory
• Corporate Streamlining
• Pensions Advisory
• Special Situations M&A
• Personal Insolvency
• Operational Improvement & Effectiveness

The Business Restructuring team works closely with the Corporate Advisory Services team. The Corporate Advisory Services team works with corporates to drive improvements in liquidity, cash flow management and operational effectiveness.