Navigating an Economic Crisis: Q&A with The Riverside Company
Pam Hendrickson, COO & vice chairman of strategic initiatives at The Riverside Company, shares how her firm is navigating the fallout from the coronavirus and her view of the market.
COO & Vice Chairman, Strategic Initiatives, The Riverside Company
Offices: Multiple, across North America, Europe and Asia
Industry focus: Business services, consumer brands, education and training, franchisors, health care, software and IT, and specialty manufacturing and distribution
Investment criteria: Riverside considers a broad cadre of investment opportunities, ranging from under $1 million to more than $400 million in enterprise value
Middle Market Growth corresponded with Pam Hendrickson on March 25.
Q. How is Riverside working with its portfolio companies amid the economic turmoil caused by the coronavirus?
Generally, it remains early days, but at present we are focused on four things: Ensuring the safety and health of both Riverside and portfolio company staff through work from home or enhanced sanitary conditions; ensuring business continuity; protecting cash flow and insuring liquidity; and working with the American Investment Council to ensure that regulators sufficiently understand the pressures our businesses are facing.
“This is a health crisis, which really impacts Main Street or even side streets and, as such, it drifts into a financial crisis.”
Q. How has deal sourcing been impacted?
We are still active.
Q. Have you had any deals in progress that have been impacted?
We closed a deal this week and funded one last week. This is going to be situational.
Q. How do you expect this crisis to impact dealmaking and financial markets over the next 12 months?
That’s going to depend very much on the duration of the crisis and it is early to speculate.
Q. How does the investment climate right now compare to what it looked like in the early days of the 2007-09 financial crisis?
This is a health crisis, which really impacts Main Street or even side streets and, as such, it drifts into a financial crisis. It is very sudden. The Great Financial Crisis started in the banking sector first and then drifted into Main Street in more of a slow burn.
Read how other middle-market private equity firms are navigating the economic crisis.