18/10/2023 - News

Clearwater International boosts its presence in the Netherlands with new Partner appointment

Onno de Groot Main

Clearwater International is pleased to be further strengthening its presence in the Netherlands, with the appointment of Onno de Groot as a Partner in the Netherlands.

Onno’s core remit will be to expand Clearwater’s sector coverage in the Netherlands

Onno joins Clearwater at an exciting time, with a remit to grow the business in the region, leading sell-side and buy-side M&A advisory services and other corporate finance assignments. He will spearhead coverage in the Netherlands within the consumer, food, agriculture, retail, and leisure sectors. With significant M&A advisory experience in the consumer sector in particular, Onno has in-depth industry knowledge and understanding of related businesses and market dynamics.

He will be closely involved in both the origination and execution of transactions within the highly active Benelux M&A mid-market, known for its significant private equity activity and high degree of cross-border transactions, while using his insights and longstanding relationships to further boost its coverage in the region.

Onno will leverage his extensive experience to ensure optimal buyers or partners are secured, who demonstrate the highest potential for enabling long-term value creation across internationalisation, M&A, product and service extension, digitisation, sustainability, sales efficiency, sourcing, and recruitment.

Prior to joining Clearwater, he gained broad financial and M&A experience at PwC Corporate Finance in both Amsterdam and London, as well as during an in-house corporate M&A secondment at FrieslandCampina.

For 16+ years, Onno has helped private equity investors and businesses identify relevant acquisitions and divestitures, in alignment with their strategic and financial objectives.

The valuable insights that Onno takes away from his impressive M&A advisory track record, will be hugely beneficial to Clearwater’s future activity

He has worked on more than 50 completed M&A transactions with an aggregate deal value above €5bn and the majority of his deals have been cross-border transactions. Some of Onno’s notable transactions include the sales of Lyceo, Vitaminstore to Nobel Capital, B&C International to Springs Window Fashions (backed by AEA Investors and BCI), Zeelandia’s Scandinavian business and assets to Orkla, NMi and Triskelion (by FDI) to Levine Leichtman, Partou (by Navitas Capital) to KidsFoundation (backed by Onex and Waterland), FTNON to JBT Corporation, Vurense Snack Industrie to Hearthside Foods, plus the distressed sales of MS Mode Group and Bernard Matthews UK. He has also advised on growth capital investments by NPM Capital in Agro Care and KUBO, plus the acquisitions of European Bakery Group by 3i Investments (from Egeria), KIWA by SHV Holdings, and Yarrah Organic Petfood by AAC Capital (from Vendis Capital).

Of his appointment, Onno commented:

"I am delighted to have joined Clearwater International, as the firm has very strong momentum and I look forward to using my experience and ambition to help drive growth across the business.

Onno de Groot 2 cropped

During the past 10 years we have seen a shift in competitive dynamics in the Netherlands and internationally, with the global M&A advisory boutiques taking market share. A trend that especially benefits a firm such as Clearwater, combining longstanding local relationships and high sell-side deal activity, with strong global sector expertise and reach. I look forward to working closely with my new Clearwater colleagues across the globe, to provide the highest quality advice to current and future clients.”

Willem Daris, Partner of Clearwater’s Dutch office, added:

Willem Daris cropped

“Clearwater Netherlands is growing at pace, more than doubling in size over the past five years, and Onno’s 16+ years’ mid-market M&A experience and focus will further broaden and enhance our sector coverage and growth. In his role as Partner, he will be dedicated to assisting clients across diverse areas, with a particular focus on the consumer and food & beverage sectors, as well as boosting financial sponsor coverage. With Onno, our M&A team can continue to grow alongside the needs of our clients, both in the Netherlands and internationally.”

Thomas Gaucher, Clearwater International Managing Partner and Co-Chair, also added:

“I am absolutely delighted to welcome Onno into the partnership of Clearwater International. His extensive sector and transaction experience, combined with detailed knowledge of the local market means he was the perfect candidate to continue building our presence in the Netherlands and internationally. He will make a substantial contribution to the business and I look forward to collaborating with him to deliver great outcomes for our clients.

Thomas Gaucher cropped

Onno brings to the table more than 16 years of corporate finance and M&A experience. His proven track record of providing top quality corporate finance services, alongside his entrepreneurial spirit are a perfect fit for the firm’s culture and growth ambitions. I have every confidence that Onno’s impressive track record, wealth of insights, and his commitment to client prosperity will create a substantial impact, further boosting the market position and growth of our successful business.”

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