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Arrowpoint Advisory's Management Advisory team has advised the senior management team of The Appointment Group (‘TAG’), the award-winning event and corporate travel management company on its secondary management buy-out backed by new UK lower mid-market private equity firm, Apiary Capital.
Founded by John Gianquitto and Maurice Veronique in 1988, TAG is the leading travel management company to the global live music and entertainment touring industry. TAG works with tour managers to arrange complex, often global, travel itineraries for performing artists such as Jay-Z, Rihanna, Lady Gaga, Foo Fighters and Depeche Mode, as well as their support teams and production crews.
The company also serves the ‘high-touch’ segment of the corporate travel market, particularly the financial services, sports, film and media sectors, as well as providing event management and private client services.
Headquartered in the UK, TAG has over 300 employees across nine offices in four countries: London, Manchester, Los Angeles, New York, Atlanta, Nashville, Singapore, Melbourne and Sydney.
Apiary's investment will drive transformational growth for TAG through acquisitions, investment in technology and people, as well as continued international expansion.
TAG has also announced the appointment of a new CEO, Steve Barrass, who joined the business on 1st August to drive the firm's growth plans. Steve will be joining from dnata Travel (part of the Emirates Group), where he was Senior Vice President for New Ventures.
Following Barrass’ appointment, Veronique will step down from the board whilst co-founder Gianquitto will remain in the business on a day-to-day basis and take the role of Founder and President, with a particular focus on driving the continued growth of the touring business. Existing CFO, Nick Stone, also joins the board.
Commenting on the deal, Nicki Boyd, Partner at Apiary Capital said: “Our investment and Steve's appointment is testament to the impressive business John and Maurice have built together. As a UK company operating in a fragmented market and with an excellent platform for growth, TAG fits perfectly within our investment sphere. We wish Maurice well and thank him for his involvement in securing our investment. We very much look forward to working with John and Steve as they build on the tremendous successes the business has achieved to date.”
Co-Founder, John Gianquitto added: “This is an incredible milestone for The Appointment Group. Apiary's investment will enable the Group to accelerate its growth through technology investment and expansion into new markets, whilst maintaining its reputation for peerless levels of customer service that everyone has come to expect from TAG.”
Simon Cope-Thompson, Managing Director at Arrowpoint Advisory commented: “It was a pleasure to work with Nick and the rest of the existing team at TAG, along with Steve Barrass. With Apiary's backing, I am sure that the business will accelerate its growth, as it continues to expand globally.”
The completion of this transaction reinforces Arrowpoint Advisory's Management Advisory credentials, and is the second TMC deal completed in 2018 following the sale of Key Travel to Elysian Capital.