Darren works in our Recovery & Reorganisation practice, specialising in advice to creditors in the mid-corporate sector and is also the national Head of Pensions Advisory.
Darren joined Grant Thornton in 1998 and in 2002 was seconded to the restructuring team in the Specialised Lending Services department of The Royal Bank of Scotland for 18 months. Darren has more than 15 years experience working in corporate finance and restructuring, as well as wide-reaching experience covering corporate advisory, investigations, due diligence and financial restructuring.
In 2005 Darren led the team from Grant Thornton that designed and implemented the Pension Regulator's approach and intervention strategy to under-funded defined benefit pension schemes and their associated employers under the new Scheme Specific Funding regime.
He regularly advises banking syndicates to financially distressed business on complex restructurings involving large defined benefit pension scheme obligations.
In the last four years he has led numerous assignments flowing from the new legislation governing the stronger funding of defined benefit pension schemes and the impact for companies funding those schemes, and their lenders.
There are three distinct strands to this work:
- Advising trustees and employers on applications for Clearance from Contribution Notices and Financial Support Directions as part of a corporate transaction;
- Advising trustees and employers on applications for Clearance from Contribution Notices and Financial Support Directions as part of a change in control of the employer, return of capital (dividends/share buybacks etc) or change in priority of the pension scheme on a winding up (from granting security to another creditor);
- Providing restructuring advice to employers and lenders to manage pensions scheme liabilities including formal insolvency solutions such as Company Voluntary Arrangements and Administrations.
Darren's expertise covers:
- Defined benefit pension schemes
- Food processing
- Hotels & Leisure
- Property & Construction
- ACA (Member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales)
- MARBP (Member of the Association of Business Recovery Professionals)
- Licensed Insolvency Practitioner