Centrus 5th Birthday: Business Milestones and What’s next
This week we celebrated the 5th anniversary of Centrus. As well as a time for celebration of the success we have managed to achieve over the past 5 years, this business milestones has given us an opportunity to pause and reflect, not only on the usual matters of strategy and performance but more importantly on the fundamental values that underpin our business.
From a standing start five years ago, we have managed to:
- Undertake more than 700 separate engagements for 158 clients
- Achieve an average annual growth rate of 50%
- Grow our team from 4 to 40 people
- Execute or restructure more than £5bn of derivatives and over £14bn of debt
- Advise on some of the highest profile financing transactions undertaken in our sectors
Having re-visited and refreshed our values as part of the birthday celebrations, perhaps it is apt to link our progress over the past five years to these values which guide our business:
Our dedication to clients and the importance we place on the relationships we enjoy with them figure front left and centre. When we first set up Centrus, we needed every bit of help we could muster to get the momentum rolling. Fortunately, it came in all shapes and from many quarters, demonstrating (as if it were needed) the value of long term personal and professional relationships. Most importantly, this included the first clients to mandate us as a brand-new business when there were plenty of established firms as alternatives. We still enjoy strong relationships with these and many other clients we have been able to support over the past 5 years. The strength and depth of these relationships is the aspect of our business that gives us the most satisfaction and which is deeply etched into our business culture. So, we would like to take this opportunity to offer a huge and heartfelt thank you to all our clients. We have greatly enjoyed the journey this far and look forward to building upon these relationships for many years to come.
We think independently and come up with innovative solutions to our clients. More importantly, during a period when the reputation of the finance industry has been under scrutiny, we have been able to offer clients confidence and clarity through our commitments i) that we do not sell financial products associated with our advice ii) we do not offer advice where this might involve a conflict of interest and iii) we are only ever paid by our clients and never via third party commissions.
The Power of the Team
We are big on team values and consider it an honour to have our clients place their trust in Centrus and to make us part of their teams. As well as the team dynamic we enjoy with our clients, our achievements to date have largely been the result of putting a team of fantastic people together with diverse characters and skill sets and simply letting them work their magic. We take great care to hire the best people we can and work hard to retain them. Based on some previous experiences of working environments, we decided early on to enshrine a novel HR policy that has stood us in great stead ever since – namely our “No A***holes Policy” – which is very helpful when seeking to form an aligned team of “energisers”. Our team is talented, committed and full of energy and enthusiasm. We are lucky to have them as colleagues and friends and would like to thank them for making Centrus a great company to lead.
We place an emphasis on old fashioned values such as commitment, fairness, sound judgement and integrity because that is the way that we believe business should be done. In the same way that we will only make provide recommendations in respect of people and firms that we trust implicitly, the most satisfying calls we ever receive are from prospective clients with which we haven’t had a previous relationship but where we have been recommended to them. An endorsement from a Centrus client is more effective than any effort on our part to sell our services.
Centrus operates primarily in Essential Service industries, which provide the housing, education, energy, infrastructure and transportation required to maintain strong and sustainable communities. This offers us a unique opportunity to use our financial and human resources as well as our extensive networks to support a wide range of community initiatives through Centrus Communities, frequently working with both partner charities and the charitable arms and foundations of our clients, seeking wherever possible to make a powerful and transformational impact. We are pleased to have been able to work with some inspiring charities, both financially and through practical support, including:
The Next Five Years
As we look back on a great five years for Centrus, what next? After a nomadic existence involving (and outgrowing!) five serviced offices in the space of five years, we start an exciting new chapter next when we move into our new offices at 10 Queen Street Place, London EC4R 1BE, which we promise are a step up from our previous accommodations! We also expect to be making some announcements soon about expanding our service offering to clients so please watch this space.
We are looking forward with confidence to the next five years of the Centrus story and thank everyone who has been part of our journey thus far.