25.03.22 | Interview

― Success for us is when all parties involved feel that they have won.

Alessandro might as well have ended up as a professional footballer in Italy. That he instead opted for a finance education and an M&A career was a strike of luck for us at Stratema and our clients. And surely a loss for professional football.


”Yes, football was important to me – and still is important. But I now mostly play with friends. I played corporate football for a while, but that is asking for a fracture. It is safe to say that the risk of injury in M&A is considerably lower. There are nonetheless certain obvious similarities. For what we do here at Stratema is clearly a type of team sport. The main difference is that success for us is when all parties involved feel that they have won. That they have done a good deal. After all, this is about solving complex issues together. But the solution itself is not necessarily complex. It may at times be very straightforward. This does not mean that it is always easy to get there. One will often need to try out ideas on others. This is one of the reasons why I enjoy working at Stratema. My colleagues, both in Stockholm and Oslo, are always readily accessible, irrespective of whether I work from home – like today – or in the office.

I worked in M&A in the New York-based investment bank UniCredit in 2017, and that experience was of crucial importance to me. If I compare that to working at Stratema, the key difference is that I have a lot more control and influence over my job here. It feels more meaningful in a way. I would say that I also work more efficiently and effectively. But a successful outcome requires more than thorough knowledge of the businesses and their products, and an understanding of what synergies may arise from a transaction. You also need to understand the cultures of the businesses and be able to determine whether they are a good fit for each other. After all, different businesses develop differently over time. It is easy to forget that even leading listed companies have once been small, and may have been started in a basement by an enthusiastic entrepreneur. This adds to the sense of responsibility that comes with every transaction – responsibility that it will turn out right. After all, I have been entrusted with growing what the entrepreneur has been carefully nursing from infancy. And it is a great feeling when we can help someone who may have devoted a major part of their life to a business idea and is genuinely enthusiastic about it – that we are adding value. I find that truly stimulating!”

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