Interim CFO at subsidiary in France

Interim CFO at subsidiary in France

  • Plastics industry / Automotive
  • Location France
  • International group of companies

In a restructuring case of an international group of companies in the plastics/automotive industry, the important French subsidiary had run into difficulties. In a 13-month assignment, the GOiNTERIM manager was able to secure liquidity, re-motivate and build up the local team and finally successfully sell the company through an M&A process. A Case on an International Interim Project during the CORONA Pandemic.

What was the initial situation/challenge

The Group is a portfolio company of a private equity firm. The Group CEO has recently been newly appointed to the Group Management to further develop and restructure the company.

The very important subsidiary in France in particular has run into difficulties and posted a significant negative result at the end of the year. The only question was whether that was true. One has only a poor basis of figures and zero transparency about the economic situation of the company. Due to the situation of a serious cash shortage, the company was faced with the strategic decision of whether to sell the subsidiary or to restructure and develop it.

Use of a GOiNTERIM Manager

Against this background, they were looking for an interim manager to go to France as CFO to investigate and analyze the situation and create the basis for making a decision.

The GOiNTERIM manager was able to take over the project and on-site management in a very short time. He had the relevant experience as CFO and commercial manager. In addition, very importantly, he also had experience in the private equity environment and with companies in difficult situations up to restructuring.

In the time of the CORONA crisis also very important, he is resident in France, so he could really implement the project on site despite travel restrictions.

What were the goals / tasks of the project

The first step was an immediate on-site visit to the subsidiary. As there was a liquidity crisis, the cash outflow had to be stopped immediately and liquidity ensured.

The other objectives were to set up a clean and rolling liquidity planning and thus to create the necessary transparency. Furthermore, as a commercial conscience, one should advise the managing director and the employees on site accordingly. In addition, all commercial issues must also be managed operationally.

Furthermore, the Group was structured into strategic business units, segments. This structure and segment reporting had to be implemented.

In addition to the more operational and short-term tasks, one of the most important goals was to create strategic scenarios and a business plan. Where can the journey go and under which general conditions do which developments arise? All strategic options were examined, sale of the subsidiary, development and also closure.

What success did the interim management assignment bring

The GOiNTERIM manager was able to immediately get the team and also the local CEO behind him, quickly managed to build a trust and was able to motivate the employees and managers again. This is important in projects, only with the employees and managers can the project goals be achieved. This was also important for the further steps and decisions of the group management.

In the short term, the tense situation was resolved. Supplemental funding was established and a state grant was also requested. This ensured the development of the business. From a strategic point of view, the company was then last successfully sold to an American company. This entire M&A process was also accompanied and implemented by the interim manager.

What were the most important steps that GOiNTERIM Manager implemented?

The manager had first brought the liquidity situation under control. Here with the setup of a cash management tool and a segment display. All commercial issues were addressed and actively managed and controlled. This created the transparency and the freedom to be able to make strategic considerations and decisions at all. Close coordination with the Group CEO and other key people in the holding company also enabled a strong level of trust to be built up.

After the analysis phase and the clean setup of the company, the second phase was the sales process. The GOiNTERIM Manager was responsible for and led this on site. All topics such as M&A consulting, data room, management presentations, Q&A etc. were successfully implemented. The interim manager ensured a clear transition until the closing.

Which successes / results would you highlight in particular

Through the experienced manager, transparency was quickly established to relax the situation and carry out a successful sales process. Group management could rely 100% and focus on other issues.

The coordination with the manager (up to weekly meetings) but also the coordination with GOiNTERIM were important and went excellent. A contact person from GOiNTERIM was always available, quick response and competent support and advice.

Would you use GOiNTERIM again?

Yes, we have already done that! GOiNTERIM’s management and industry experience coupled with an excellent and qualified network also on an international level particularly distinguishes GOiNTERIM.

“Our subsidiary in France was in a very critical situation. The GOiNTERIM Manager was able to create the necessary transparency and take over the commercial management in a very short time. In addition, he was responsible for the entire sales process. The manager as well as GOiNTERIM were very competent sparring partners, who significantly contributed to the success. We will continue to work with GOiNTERIM.”

Quote from the Group CEO of the international group

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