Houlihan Lokey

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Houlihan Lokey, Inc.
Traded as NYSEHLI
Industry Investment banking
Founded 1972; 46 years ago (1972)
Headquarters Constellation Place
Los Angeles, California, United States
Key people
Irwin Gold (Executive Chairman)
Scott Beiser (CEO)
Scott Adelson (Co-President)
David Preiser (Co-President)
Products Financial Services
Investment Banking
Number of employees
1,161 (Feb. 2017)
Website www.hl.com
Constellation Place, the global headquarters of the firm

Houlihan Lokey, Inc., is an independent, advisory-focused, global investment bank. Houlihan Lokey was founded in 1972 and is headquartered at Constellation Place in Century City, Los Angeles, California.[1] The firm advises large public and closely held companies as well as institutions and governments.[2] Its main service lines include mergers and acquisitions, capital markets, restructuring and distressed M&A, fairness opinions, valuations, and strategic consulting. As of early 2017, Houlihan Lokey employed more than 1,161 employees worldwide.[3]

In 2016, Houlihan Lokey was named the No. 1 M&A Advisor for All U.S. Transactions, the No. 1 Global Investment Banking Restructuring Advisor, and a Top 10 Most Active Global M&A Advisor by Thomson Reuters.[4] In 2015, Houlihan Lokey was named the No. 1 M&A Advisor for all U.S. transactions, the No. 1 Global M&A Fairness Opinion Advisor, and the No. 1 Global Investment Banking Restructuring Advisor by Thomson Reuters.[4] The firm was also named the Best Bank to Work For the last four years by Vault.com, obtaining first place in over half of the categories including Employee Satisfaction, Compensation and Selectivity.[5]



Houlihan Lokey was founded in Los Angeles in 1972 as a provider of general business advisory services to privately held companies. The 1974 passage of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act launched the firm’s valuation business by creating demand for independent valuations of private businesses, particularly those that had formed employee stock ownership programs.


In 1986, Kenneth Friedman founded and became President of Houlihan Lokey’s investment banking broker dealer to provide M&A advisory services and to raise debt and equity financing. Friedman formed the investment bank to provide Wall Street level expertise to the expanding investment banking demands of Houlihan Lokey’s clients and other middle market companies. By 1987, many of the highly leveraged transactions completed earlier in the decade were starting to exhibit signs of financial distress. Accordingly, a market was developing for financial restructuring advisory services. To position itself to serve this burgeoning market, the investment banking broker-dealer purchased Cheviot Capital Corporation in 1987 and, led by Jeff Werbalowsky and Irwin Gold, began assembling what would become an active, dominant, worldwide financial restructuring group.

With the surge of mergers, acquisitions, and leveraged buyouts, Wall Street’s large investment banking firms began calling on Houlihan Lokey for independent valuation expertise in fairness, solvency, and employee stock ownership plan (ESOP) opinions. The firm advised on transactions valued at more than $100 billion during this period. The firm also started to offer estate planning valuation services. In addition, the firm opened several offices in the 1980s in New York City, San Francisco, and Chicago.


Houlihan Lokey opened eight offices across the U.S. in the 1980s and 1990s as it expanded. In 1995, to grow its information services division, Houlihan Lokey acquired Mergerstat, a publishing company with a 30-year history in analytical M&A research, from Merrill Lynch.


In 2001, Houlihan Lokey launched its first non-U.S. office by expanding into London. It also expanded its industry group platform and private equity coverage program in keeping with investment banking trends.

In 2002, Houlihan Lokey advised the official creditors committees in three large bankruptcies: WorldCom, Enron, and Conseco.

In 2005, the firm opened a Paris office.

In 2006, the firm opened a Frankfurt office. Also in 2006, Houlihan Lokey agreed to merge with ORIX USA, the U.S. corporate lending operations of ORIX Corp. of Japan, to address the growing international demand for middle-market investment banking services.

In 2007, Houlihan Lokey expanded into Asia, opening offices in Hong Kong and Tokyo. Within the next three years, the firm also opened an office in Beijing.

In 2008, Houlihan Lokey advised the creditors of Lehman Brothers.[6]


In 2010, Houlihan Lokey bought a sizable minority stake in Avista Advisory Group, a then decade-old advisory group. This gave the firm offices in both Mumbai and Singapore.[7]

In 2013, Houlihan Lokey expanded its Financial Institutions Group through the acquisition of Milestone Advisors.[8] The firm also launched the Illiquid Financial Assets practice to advise on the sales of assets such as stakes in loan pools, life settlements, minority positions, pharmaceutical royalties, and operating leases.[9]

In 2014, Houlihan Lokey strengthened its capabilities and coverage for clients across the technology sector with the acquisition of ArchPoint Partners.[10]

In 2015, Houlihan Lokey acquired management consulting firm Bridge Strategy Group,[11] digital media and entertainment focused investment bank MESA Securities,[12] London-based consumer-focused firm McQueen Ltd.,[13] and operations of the Continental European investment bank Leonardo & Co.[14] Also in 2015, Houlihan Lokey acquired the investment banking operations of Leonardo & Co. NV in Germany, the Netherlands, and Spain, and became a minority partner in a joint venture with the management team of Leonardo in respect to Leonardo’s investment banking operations in Italy. This gave the firm offices in both Rome and Milan.[15] On August 13, 2015, Houlihan Lokey completed its initial public offering, beginning trading as HLI on the NYSE.[16]

In January 2017, Houlihan Lokey acquired Black Stone IP, a leader in Tech+IP advisory work.[17]


Financial restructuring

The financial restructuring team has approximately 170 professionals worldwide, and every assignment is staffed with professionals who facilitate the completion of due diligence and analysis. Houlihan Lokey has advised several extremely complicated deals, and between 2007 and 2017 the firm advised on more than 1000 restructuring transactions, with aggregate debt claims in excess of $1.5 trillion, including the five largest of all time: Lehman Brothers, Washington Mutual, WorldCom, General Motors and CIT Group.

Corporate finance

Corporate finance is best known for offering mergers & acquisitions and capital markets advisory services. The firm has advised public and private institutions on buy-side and sell-side transactions as well as leveraged loans, private mezzanine debt, high-yield debt, IPOs, follow-ons, convertibles, PIPEs, private equity, and liability management transactions. The company has also developed an expertise in advising financial sponsors on all types of transactions, effectively creating one of the largest financial sponsors groups on Wall Street.

Financial advisory services

This division offers opinion services, transaction & valuation reporting services, real estate valuation & advisory, portfolio valuation, and financial consulting to company owners, managers, and special committees in their interactions with auditors and regulators.

Strategic consulting

This division helps clients learn their options for delivering greater shareholder value, identify and capitalize on opportunities outside of traditional business models, find operating efficiencies and accelerate profitable growth, and uncover possible strategic alliances that enhance go-to-market strategies.

Rankings and awards

2017 Rankings and Awards:[18]

  • Restructuring Deal of the Year for Africa – Edcon—The Banker's Deals of the Year 2017
  • Restructuring Deal of the Year for the Americas – SandRidge Energy—The Banker's Deals of the Year • 2017
  • Restructuring Deal of the Year for Asia-Pacific – Kaisa—The Banker's Deals of the Year 2017
  • Restructuring Deal of the Year for Europe – Codere—The Banker's Deals of the Year 2017

2016 Rankings and Awards:[18]

  • Restructuring Deal of the Year for Asia-Pacific – PT Berlian Laju Tanker Tbk—The Banker's Deals of the Year 2016
  • Restructuring Deal of the Year for the Americas – Indiana Toll Road—The Banker's Deals of the Year 2016
  • Most Innovative Investment Bank for Restructuring—The Banker's 2016 Investment Banking Awards

2015 Rankings and Awards:[18]

  • Best Loan Restructuring House—GlobalCapital Syndicated Loan, Leveraged Finance, and Private Placement Awards
  • Grand Prix Restructuring Deal of the Year for Large Cap – Vivarte—Le Magazine des Affaires
  • Cross Border Deal of the Year for U.S./Asia Region – LDK Solar—The M&A Advisor's International M&A Awards
  • Cross Border Deal of the Year (Over $ Billion) – LDK Solar—The M&A Advisor's Turnaround Awards
  • Restructuring Deal of the Year for Asia-Pacific – Mirabela Nickel—The Banker's Deals of the Year 2015
  • Restructuring Deal of the Year for Europe – Punch Taverns—The Banker's Deals of the Year 2015

2014 Rankings and Awards:

  • The Banker’s 2014 Restructuring Deals of the Year Awards: Americas; American Airlines[19]
  • TMA Europe Turnaround of the Year Awards 2014: Large Company Award; SolarWorld AG[20]
  • GlobalCapital’s Best Loan Restructuring Advisor 2014[21]

2013 Rankings and Awards:[22]

  • No. 1 Global Restructuring Advisor — Thomson Reuters
  • No. 1 U.S. M&A Fairness Opinion Advisor Over the Past 10 Years — Thomson Reuters
  • No. 1 M&A Advisor for U.S. Transactions Under $3 Billion — Thomson Reuters
  • Restructuring Advisor of the Year — International Financing Review (IFR)
  • Best Loan Restructuring House — EuroWeek
  • European Restructuring House of the Year — Financial News
  • Dealmaker of the Year: BTA Bank $11.1 Billion Restructuring — Finance Monthly
  • Cross-Border Dealmaker of the Year for Eurodrip — Acquisition International's 2013 M&A Awards
  • Restructuring Winner Europe for eircomThe Banker's Deals of the Year 2013
  • Restructuring Winner Africa for Afrisam — The Banker's Deals of the Year 2013
  • Restructuring Winner Americas for Kerzner International — The Banker's Deals of the Year 2013

In 2011, Vault.com named Houlihan Lokey the best bank to work for, being ranked first in compensation, selectivity, diversity, hours, training, employee satisfaction, business outlook, and culture. Also in 2011, Houlihan Lokey was named International Financing Review's European Restructuring House.[23]


Houlihan Lokey bankers focus on industries that include

Aerospace, Building Products, Business Services, Chemicals, Consumer Products, Defense and Government Services, Energy, Financial Institutions, Healthcare, Industrial & Environmental Technologies, Industrials Automotive, Infrastructure Services & Construction, Lodging & Leisure, Materials Engineering, Media, Metals, Plastics & Packaging, Real Estate, Retail & Food, Sports & Entertainment, Technology, Telecommunications, and Transportation & Logistics.

Office locations

Notes and references

  1. ^ Vincent, Roger. "Energy cells help power Century City skyscraper." Los Angeles Times. February 5, 2012. Retrieved February 5, 2012.
  2. ^ "[1]." Houlihan Lokey. Retrieved December 19, 2011. "Registered Office : 1930 Century Park West Los Angeles, CA 90067-6802, United States"
  3. ^ J. Lerdsu (February 1, 2017). "Investor Presentation, February 2017" (PDF). Houlihan Lokey. Retrieved September 7, 2017. 
  4. ^ a b "Houlihan Lokey About Us". Retrieved June 14, 2016. 
  5. ^ "ADVANCING YOUR VISION | Press Fact Sheet • 2014" (PDF). Houlihan Lokey. July 8, 2014. Retrieved September 7, 2017. 
  6. ^ "Judge in Lehman bankruptcy backs $158 mln in professional fees". November 14, 2012 – via Reuters. 
  7. ^ "Houlihan Unveils Indian Partnership". www.hl.com. Retrieved April 18, 2017. 
  9. ^ Willmer, Sabrina. "Houlihan Lokey to Double Team Focused on Illiquid Sales". Bloomberg.com. Retrieved September 6, 2016. 
  10. ^ Demos, Telis (March 11, 2014). "Houlihan Lokey to Acquire ArchPoint Partners". Wall Street Journal. ISSN 0099-9660. Retrieved September 6, 2016. 
  11. ^ Demos, Telis. "Houlihan Lokey Opens A New Front For Boutiques: Consulting". Retrieved September 6, 2016. 
  12. ^ Lang, Brent (June 22, 2015). "Houlihan Lokey Acquires Mesa Securities". Retrieved September 6, 2016. 
  14. ^ "Houlihan Lokey expands operations in continental Europe". Private Equity Wire. November 18, 2015. Retrieved September 6, 2016. 
  15. ^ "Leonardo | Houlihan Lokey". www.hl.com. Retrieved April 18, 2017. 
  16. ^ Times, Los Angeles. "Houlihan Lokey shares rise in trading debut". latimes.com. Retrieved September 6, 2016. 
  17. ^ "Black Stone IP | Houlihan Lokey". www.hl.com. Retrieved April 18, 2017. 
  18. ^ a b c "Houlihan Lokey Information, About Us, M&A Advisory, Restructuring, Financial Advisory Services". www.hl.com. Retrieved June 2, 2017. 
  19. ^ Banker, The. "Deals of the Year 2014 – Americas". ec2-54-72-50-240.eu-west-1.compute.amazonaws.com. Retrieved June 2, 2017. 
  20. ^ "Houlihan Lokey Voices: A Review of 2014". www.hl.com. Retrieved June 2, 2017. 
  21. ^ "Winners revealed: Syndicated Loans and Leveraged Finance Awards 2014". www.globalcapital.com. Retrieved June 2, 2017. 
  22. ^ "Houlihan Lokey Information, About Us, M&A Advisory, Restructuring, Financial Advisory Services". www.hl.com. 
  23. ^ "[2]." Lehman Fees Could Reach $1.4 Billion, Besting Enron (Update1). Retrieved December 19, 2011.

External links

  • Official website
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