Leo LHC.U = 1C + 1/4 W
Leo 1 merged DMS
Deutsche Bank, Credit Suisse
Lion Capital is a leading consumer focused private equity firm and its principals have invested over $9.3 billion in 49 businesses since 1998. Since it was founded in 2004 by Lyndon Lea and Robert Darwent, Lion Capital has focused exclusively on investing in the consumer sector globally, including disruptive technologies. Every aspect of Lion Capital’s structure, team and approach has been designed to support this strategy, and Lion Capital has invested in some of the consumer industry’s best-known brands, including Weetabix, Orangina, Jimmy Choo and AllSaints. Representing approximately 70% of GDP, consumer related spend offers a vast pool of potential attractive opportunities for the company.
Our management team is led by Lyndon Lea, our President and Chief Executive Officer. Mr. Lea is a founder of Lion Capital and has served as its Managing Partner since its inception in 2004. Prior to founding Lion Capital, Mr. Lea was a partner of Hicks, Muse, Tate & Furst where he co-founded its European operations in 1998. From 1994 to 1998, Mr. Lea served at Glenisla, the former European affiliate of Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co., prior to which he was an investment banker in London and New York with Schroders and Goldman Sachs. Mr. Lea graduated with a BA in Honors Business Administration from the University of Western Ontario in Canada in 1990.
Mr. Lea has been active in the investment arena for 30 years, 26 of which have been exclusively focused on private equity. Mr. Lea has led the acquisitions of over 30 investments. Mr Lea also has extensive operating experience having served as interim CEO for AllSaints and having held executive positions in several portfolio investments over his career. Additionally, Mr Lea has served on several public company boards including Yell plc, Premier Foods and Aber. Mr Lea currently serves on the board of DMS (NYSE:DMS).
Ed Forst, our Chairman, is Chairman, Partner, and member of the Investment Committee at Lion Capital. Mr. Forst previously served as Chief Executive Officer of Cushman & Wakefield, leading the commercial real estate firm across more than 60 countries. Prior to this, Mr. Forst was a Management Committee Partner of Goldman, Sachs & Co. where he served as the Co-CEO of Goldman Sachs Asset Management, and before that as the Chief Administrative Officer and Executive Vice President of the firm. Mr. Forst also served as the Chairman of Goldman’s Global Debt Underwriting Committee for seven years. Mr. Forst was also the Executive Vice President and Principal Operating Officer of Harvard University during the financial crisis, as well as Adviser to the Secretary of the Treasury on the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP). Mr. Forst sits on the boards of The Feinstein Institute of Northwell Health and the Yale School of Management. Mr. Forst has also served on the board of the Harvard Management Company, as Treasurer of Carnegie Hall, and as the Chairman of the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association (SIFMA). Mr. Forst earned his MBA from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and his AB in Economics from Harvard University.
Robert Darwent is our Chief Financial Officer. Alongside Mr. Lea, Mr. Darwent is a founder of Lion Capital where he sits on the Investment Committee and Operating Committee of the firm. Prior to founding Lion Capital in 2004, Mr. Darwent worked with Mr. Lea in the European operations of Hicks, Muse, Tate & Furst since its formation in 1998. From 1995 to 1998, Mr. Darwent worked in the London office of Morgan Stanley in their investment banking and private equity groups. Mr. Darwent graduated from Cambridge University in 1995. Mr. Darwent currently serves on the public company boards of Loungers plc (LON:LGRS) and DMS (NYSE:DMS).
Our Board of Directors
Lori Bush has agreed to serve on our board of directors and is the former President and Chief Executive Officer of Rodan + Fields, a US manufacturer and Social Commerce company specializing in skincare products, where she served from October 2007 until her retirement in January 2016. During Ms. Bush’s tenure as President and Chief Executive Officer, she led the company from a start-up to one of the largest premium skincare brands in the United States and a valuation of $1.5 billion. With more than 30 years’ experience in the consumer and health care products industries, Ms. Bush was responsible for overseeing the brand’s entrance into the direct selling arena. A seasoned direct selling leader, Ms. Bush previously served from February 2000 to March 2006 as President of the personal care segment of Nu Skin Enterprises, Inc. (NYSE:NUS), a global direct selling company operating in more than 40 markets around the world. During Ms. Bush’s tenure with the company, she acted as a global spokesperson for the brand while leading the marketing, operations and research and development functions. Ms. Bush has also held several leadership positions, from 1993 to 2000, within the skincare franchise of Johnson & Johnson Consumer Products Companies, including Worldwide Executive Director Skin Care Ventures and Vice President of Professional Marketing at Neutrogena. In 2020, Ms. Bush came out of retirement as the co-founder and CEO of Solvasa LLC, a beauty and wellness startup pioneering the concept of Integrative Beauty. Ms. Bush also served as a director of Leo Holdings Corp., a special purpose acquisition company formed for substantially similar purposes as our company and that completed its initial public offering in February 2018. Ms. Bush is also the former chairman of the board of managers of New Avon and a former director of public and private companies in the medical device and consumer health space and currently serves as a director for two privately held consumer products companies. Ms. Bush has a Bachelor of Science in Medical Technology, which she received from The Ohio State University in 1978 and an MBA from Fox School of Management at Temple University which she received in 1985 and where she currently serves as Director on the Board of Visitors.
Mary E. Minnick has agreed to serve on our board of directors and was a Partner of Lion Capital from 2007 until 2017. Previously, Ms. Minnick served in various capacities at The Coca-Cola Company (NYSE:KO), including as Chief Operating Officer of Asia and Global President of Marketing, Strategy and Innovation, from 1983 to 2007. During Ms. Minnick tenure at The Coca-Cola Company, she led the strategic planning process for all markets and held direct responsibility for strategic planning, marketing, new product development, product quality, advertising, media, environmental policies, sustainability, research and development, science and regulatory affairs, worldwide packaging and equipment. In Ms. Minnick role as Chief Operating Officer of Asia from 2002 to 2005, she was responsible for the management of 30 countries throughout Asia. Ms. Minnick has also served as a member of the board of directors of the global brewer Heineken (AMS:HEIA) from 2008 to 2015 and the consumer packaged food and beverage company WhiteWave Foods Co. (NYSE:WWAV) from 2012 to 2016. Ms. Minnick currently is a member of the board of directors of the Target Corporation (NYSE:TGT), which she joined in 2005. Ms. Minnick also served as a director of Leo Holdings Corp., a special purpose acquisition company formed for substantially similar purposes as our company and that completed its initial public offering in February 2018. Ms. Minnick continues to serve as Chairman of DMS (NYSE:DMS). Ms. Minnick has an MBA from Duke University and a BA in Business from Bowling Green State University.
Naveen Agarwal has agreed to serve on our board of directors and is currently Chief Market Development Officer for Prudential Financial (NYSE:PRU), a Fortune 50 company with 50,000+ global employees, offering financial products and services and generating more than $50 billion in annual revenue. Previously, Mr. Agarwal served as Prudential Financial’s Chief Marketing Officer from 2019 to 2020, and Chief Customer Officer from 2015 to 2018. At Prudential Financial, Mr. Agarwal created the vision to drive income growth and operational efficiencies across its U.S. and international businesses leveraging digital technology, marketing and data analytics. He has led global brand, digital solutions, customer experience, customer marketing, and data science, and has been the catalyst behind company’s culture change and transformation from product centric to customer centric. Mr. Agarwal mobilized the adoption of technology, personalization, predictive modeling and artificial
intelligence at scale, and is now helping company’s entry into new markets, products, capabilities, and distribution ecosystems. Prior to Prudential Financial, Mr. Agarwal worked for 20 years as a senior executive in several companies in Silicon Valley, most recently from 2012 to 2014 as Chief Executive Officer and Board Director and from 2009 to 2011 as Chief Operating Officer of Pricelock, an online marketplace for large energy buyers and sellers. Mr. Agarwal was instrumental in creating a unique brand in energy markets that helped Pricelock grow to more than a billion dollars in transaction volume. Before that, Mr. Agarwal served from 2006 to 2008 as President of E*Trade Capital Management, where he drove P/L growth via engaging company’s mass-affluent customers, and from 2002 to 2005, as Vice President of Engineering and Product at E*Trade Financial. Mr. Agarwal also served as Vice President, Engineering for Weave Innovations from 1999 to 2002, Vice President of Risk Solutions at SunGard from 1995 to 2001, and spent several years working in various global software development and product management positions in the health care, auto and finance sectors in London, India, and New York. Mr. Agarwal leverages his broad expertise to drive innovation, and seamlessly connect the dots between traditional and new digital economies, modern marketing and customer engagement at scale. Mr. Agarwal also serves as an external board member and advisor for Finovera and Knotch. Mr. Agarwal holds an MBA from Haas School of Business at the University of California, Berkeley and a bachelor’s degree in Computer Science and Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Varanasi, India.
We have established a non-governance board of advisors to assist in the search and evaluation of potential targets. Each of these executives brings a long track record of operating experience, particularly in the area of digital transformative and disruptive technologies.
Scott Flanders has served as Chief Executive Officer of eHealth, Inc. since May 2016 and as a director since February 2008. Prior to joining eHealth as CEO, Mr. Flanders served as the chief executive officer of Playboy Enterprises, Inc., a media and lifestyle company from 2009 until May 2016. Previously, Mr. Flanders served as the president and chief executive officer of Freedom Communications, Inc., a privately-owned media company, from January 2006 to June 2009, and as a member of its board of directors from 2001 to 2009. From 1999 to July 2005, Mr. Flanders served as the chairman and chief executive officer of Columbia House Company, a direct marketer of music and video products, which was acquired by Bertelsmann AG in July 2005. Mr. Flanders holds a B.A. degree in economics from the University of Colorado and a J.D. from Indiana University. He is also a certified public accountant.
Imran Khan is the co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Verishop, a new e-commerce company with the mission to bring online shopping back to life. By merging industry-leading tech and retail, Verishop aims to be nimble and innovative in creating an ever-evolving shopping destination that both shoppers and brands can count on. In addition to Verishop, Imran also serves as the CEO of Proem Asset Management. Prior to co-founding Verishop, Imran served as Snap Inc.’s Chief Strategy Officer, where he oversaw the company’s overall operation, corporate strategy, revenue generation, and partnerships. Under his leadership, Snap’s annual revenue grew significantly. Previously, Imran was a Managing Director and Head of Global Internet Investment Banking at Credit Suisse where he advised on more than several billions of Internet M&A and financing transactions. Before joining Credit Suisse, Imran held the role of Managing Director and Head of Global Internet Research at JPMorgan Chase. During his research career, Imran was consistently ranked as one of top Internet analysts in Wall Street by third party research surveys.
Mark Masinter is a Managing Member and founder of OPEN Realty Advisors, one of North America’s premier investment, development and real estate advisory firms solely focused on the consumer sector. Under Mr. Masinter’s leadership, OPEN has consulted with and led the store growth and real estate execution strategies of some of North America’s premier consumer brands. Representative brands OPEN has led include: Apple (almost 300 stores since 1999); Restoration Hardware (more than 125 real estate transaction since 1992); Warby Parker (120 stores since 2014); J.Crew (more than 300 stores since 2005), Madewell (135 stores); and recent engagements with lululemon, AWAY Travel and Lucid Motors to initiate their respective store growth strategies. In addition to the real estate advisory activities, Mr. Masinter has led the investment of some of the most well-known retail developments in the US representing billions in capital investment, including: Legacy West; Henderson Avenue redevelopment; and The Hub. Mr. Masinter has invested in many retail, restaurant and direct-to-consumer channel businesses, including leading the founding investment in Restoration Hardware and as a founding partner of Retail & Restaurant Growth Capital, a mezzanine fund focused on growing retail and restaurant ventures including Quizno’s, Uncle Julio’s, and Elizabeth Arden Red Door Salons, among others. Mr. Masinter received a Bachelor of Political Science degree from Southern Methodist University.
Scott McNealy is the Co-Founder of Sun Microsystems and served as CEO and Chairman of the Board for 22 years during which he piloted the company from startup to Silicon Valley giant in computing infrastructure, network computing, and open-source software. Under his watch, Sun Microsystems employed approximately 235,000 worldwide. Sun was sold to Oracle in 2010 for $7.4 billion. Today, McNealy is heavily involved in advisory roles for companies that range from startup stage to large corporations, including Curriki. Curriki (curriculum + wiki) is an independent 501(c)(3) organization working toward eliminating the education divide by providing free K-12 curricula and collaboration tools through an open-source platform.