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New Mountain acquires majority stake in Grant Thornton

New Mountain Capital, a New York-based private equity firm with $50bn in AUM, has acquired a majority stake in the US arm of Grant Thornton, the third largest accounting firm in the US outside of the Big Four – Deloitte, EY, KPMG, and PwC.

The deal, which is New Mountain’s’ second investment in a top 25 US accountancy firm following its acquisition of a controlling stake in Citrin Cooperman in 2022, is the latest in a number of private equity deals that are transforming the sector, including last month’s announcement of a $1bn cash infusion in smaller rival Baker Tilley by PE firm Hellman & Friedman.

Financial terms of the New Mountain-Grant Thornton deal have not been disclosed but it is expected to be the largest of the five PE deals so far involving top 25 US accountancy firms. The other two firms to have closed private equity deals are EisnerAmper and Cherry Bekaert.

Following xlosing of the deal, Grant Thornton, which will remain independent of Citrin Cooperman, and will operate in an alternative practice structure: Grant Thornton LLP, a licensed CPA firm, will provide attest services, while Grant Thornton Advisors LLC will provide business advisory and non-attest services.

In a press statement, Seth Siegel, CEO of Grant Thornton (US), said: “The investment immediately enhances our value in the marketplace and enables us to accelerate our current strategy. We’ll enjoy greater scale, resources and agility, while better positioning the firm to make targeted investments in talent, technology, infrastructure and enhanced capabilities. Grant Thornton will further solidify our position as the industry’s platform of choice.”

Deutsche Bank Securities, Dechert, Vedder Price and Mayer Brown are advising Grant Thornton. Simpson Thacher & Bartlett and Hunton Andrews Kurth are advising New Mountain Capital.

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