Gordon Brothers Enhances European Operations with Key Appointments

  • Álvaro Cobo appointed as Managing Director, Spain & Portugal
  • Berta Escudero appointed as Managing Director, Retail 
  • Gordon Brothers announced today it has boosted its European operations with new hires. The global advisory, investment and restructuring firm, has appointed Álvaro Cobo to lead the firm’s operations in Spain and Berta Escudero to evolve its offerings to European retailers undergoing restructuring.

    Álvaro is a Partner at Amura Management Partners, a leading Spanish advisory and interim management firm focused on special situations and restructurings. With over 17 years in Restructuring, Private Equity and M&A, Álvaro will head up Gordon Brothers’ operations for Iberia, taking over from Gerhard van der Vorst, who will retire at the end of 2019. His experience will allow the firm to deploy its skillset in more situations. Álvaro will be based in Madrid.

    Berta joins Gordon Brothers to develop and execute the firm’s retail offering ensuring continuity locally within the Spanish and Portuguese markets, as well as wider Europe, Russia and the Middle East. She was previously CEO at El Ganso, a multinational Spanish fashion retailer. Prior to her time at El Ganso, Berta spent ten years at Grupo Cortefiel (now Tendam), another multinational fashion company, with over 2000 stores in 90 countries, also serving as CEO in her latest role there.

    “These are exceptional hires that will reinforce our European team. Álvaro brings a wealth of restructuring and special situations experience and Berta is an extraordinary retailer having worked with and managed many high-profile international brands through transitional times,” commented Heinz Weber, European President of Gordon Brothers. “We are very excited to have them both on board and look forward to their contributions serving both the retail and commercial & industrial sectors across Europe and beyond. Continuing to provide the expertise, capital and operational support companies and their investors need to manage through change.

    Gerhard van der Vorst, Managing Director, Head of Spain & Portugal said, “Spain is a key market for Gordon Brothers. With its sophisticated retailers and investors our 300-strong global team of professionals have successfully served and met demanding requirements. I am confident that we will continue to provide growth opportunities and solutions to Iberian operators of all sizes with Alvaro at the helm. Our European capabilities will be further enhanced with the experience of Berta. I look forward to working with the team over the coming months to ensure we continue to harness opportunity and provide best in class solutions to existing and new clients.

    Gordon Brothers has operated in Spain since 2012, working with hypermarkets such as Carrefour and Eroski. In 2013 the firm provided operational expertise and working capital to the men’s and womenswear company Blanco. Also, Darty, a leading cross-channel electrical retailer appointed Gordon Brothers to manage a full country exit from the Spanish market, closing 41 stores, as part of its strategic restructuring.

    Elsewhere in Europe, Gordon Brothers supports companies and their investors with valuation, asset monetisation and investment services. In 2018 the firm became a capital and operational partner to the buyers of Mercatone Uno, an Italian furniture and home goods retail chain, deploying €24m in just eight business days. Gordon Brothers was also appointed by the Swiss fashion retailer, Charles Vögele, to complete three separate projects across Germany, Switzerland and Austria, as part of the company’s restructuring plan. In France, Gordon Brothers disposed of La Halle Chassures branded footwear across 134 stores, also as part of the group’s restructuring. And, in the UK in 2018 the firm was mandated to close all Toys “R” Us stores nationwide after the company fell into administration.

    In November 2018, Gordon Brothers announced the elevation of its Global Industrial practice with key hires in the UK and Australia and its appointment in major asset sales.

    Gordon Brothers, which is headquartered in the US, also works with operators and their investors across Asia, North and South America and Australia.