David has 31 years of consumer advisory experience, with deep expertise in multi-channel retail, e-commerce, consumer services, franchising and consumer products manufacturers. David’s experience spans the consumer landscape, ranging from Apparel to Auto Aftermarket. He enjoys achieving maximizing value in auction sales, as well as complex structured equity raises and rescue financing.
Prior to joining Financo, David worked at Lazard Middle Market, where as CEO he tripled both overall firm revenues and revenues per Managing Director, while establishing teams in London, Paris, Milan and Frankfurt. David has also worked at Goldsmith Agio Helms, where he helped grow the firm to 130 professionals and built its e-commerce and direct marketing practices. Early in his career, David was a real estate developer of shopping centers. David graduated magna cum laude with both a BA and an M.Arch from Yale University, and he received an MBA from the Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota.
What drives your passion for e-commerce and direct marketing?
When I moved from shopping center development into investment banking, I started working with catalog marketers. I was intrigued with the science of database marketing that could market to individuals based on prior purchase patterns. I fell in love with this analytical way of marketing to consumers, and jumped deep into e-commerce, which introduced real-time, two-way interactions between brands and individual customers. We are still in the early innings of how e-commerce and the Internet are transforming our society, and I find it immensely exciting!
What is one thing you wish people knew about you?
I love the practice of representing a client in an M&A process because it is a craft and an art form. Each process is a different chess game, with possible moves and game theory analysis. I enjoy building deep relationships with my clients, while guiding them through an intense and complex process. I try to minimize my clients’ stress through a well-managed process and help them enjoy the adventure unfolding before them. I love studying the analytics around how a business works and what differentiates its strategy. I actually look forward to the drama of intense negotiations as a transaction advances, and I challenge myself to take each project to the edge of what’s possible.
What attracted you to Financo?
Before leaving Lazard, I spent months thinking about my next career and exploring alternatives. I chose Financo because it had a great balance of excellence and a warm and intimate culture. Financo is an outstanding brand, with senior bankers who have earned national reputations in their sectors, completing industry-defining transactions up to $1.5 billion. I knew the Financo brand would support my practice. The firm also has a collegial team environment, where I can practice my M&A craft with great people and great consumer brands.
Where can we find you when you’re outside the office?
I am an avid runner and also enjoy the fast pace of squash, both of which I build into my weekly schedule. I love the outdoors, and when I can get to the mountains, I go backpacking, fly fishing and skiing. I am a passionate conservationist, and I serve as a Board Member for American Rivers, the leading river and water conservation organization.