Houlihan Lokey

Houlihan Lokey

Houlihan Lokey, Inc.
Type Private
Industry Investment banking
Founded 1972
Headquarters Constellation Place
Los Angeles, California, United States
Key people Scott Beiser (CEO)
Products Financial Services
Investment Banking
Employees 980 (July 2013)
Website www.hl.com
Constellation Place, the global headquarters of the firm

Houlihan Lokey, Inc. is an independent, advisory-focused, global investment bank. It is one of the largest privately owned investment banks in the world.[1] Houlihan Lokey was founded in 1972 and is headquartered at Constellation Place in Century City, Los Angeles, California.[2] The firm advises large public and closely held companies as well as institutions and governments.[3] Its main service lines include mergers and acquisitions, capital markets, restructuring and Distressed M&A, fairness opinions, and valuations. As of 2012, Houlihan Lokey employed over 850 employees worldwide.[4]

The Skyper skyscraper in Frankfurt, where the German office of Houlihan Lokey is located.

In 2013, Houlihan Lokey was named the No. 1 Global Restructuring Advisor, the No. 1 U.S. M&A Fairness Opinion Advisor Over the Past 10 Years, and the No. 1 M&A Advisor for U.S. Transactions Under $3 Billion by Thomson Reuters. 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.[4]


  • History 1
    • 1970s 1.1
    • 1980s 1.2
    • 1990s 1.3
    • 2000s 1.4
  • Operations 2
    • Financial Restructuring 2.1
    • Corporate Finance 2.2
    • Financial Advisory Services 2.3
  • Rankings 3
  • Industries 4
  • Office locations 5
  • Notes and references 6
  • External links 7



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 T. Friedman founded and became President of Houlihan Lokey's investment banking broker-dealer to provide corporate finance services including M&A advisory services and procuring debt and equity financing. Friedman formed the investment bank to provide Wall Street level expertise to the expanding investment banking demands of the middle-market. 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 began assembling, led by Jeff Werbalowsky and Irwin Gold, 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 ’80s in New York, 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. The firm opened a Paris office in 2005 and a Frankfurt office in 2006. 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 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. Houlihan Lokey opened offices in Hong Kong and Tokyo in 2007. The firm opened an office in Beijing, Mumbai and Singapore the next three years.


Financial Restructuring

The financial restructuring team has nearly 180 professionals worldwide and every assignment is staffed with professionals who facilitate the completion of due diligence and analysis. In the past years, Houlihan Lokey has advised several extremely complicated deals. During this period the firm advised on almost 1000 restructuring transactions (including 12 of the 15 largest bankruptcy cases), special situations or Distressed M&A, with aggregate debt claims in excess of $1.5 trillion, including cases such as Lehman Brothers, WorldCom, Enron, 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, and 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 on 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, portfolio valuation and financial consulting to company owners, managers and special committees in their interactions with auditors and regulators.


Houlihan Lokey has won the Best Investment Banking Firm Award several times over the last few years. The firm has led Mergers & Acquisitions Journal’s annual M&A fairness opinion advisory rankings for the past seven years. It was named International Financing Review's European Restructuring House.[5]

Here is a brief list of the 2013 awards and recognitions won by Houlihan Lokey:[6]

• 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 AfrisamThe Banker's Deals of the Year 2013

• Restructuring Winner Americas for Kerzner InternationalThe Banker's Deals of the Year 2013

In 2011, Vault.com named Houlihan Lokey the Best Bank to work for in 2011, being ranked first in Compensation, Selectivity, Diversity, Hours, Training, Employee Satisfaction, Business Outlook and Culture.


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. ^ http://www.emergingmarkets.me/2011/12/houlihan-lokey-is-expanding-its-ma-team/
  2. ^ Vincent, Roger. "Energy cells help power Century City skyscraper." Los Angeles Times. February 5, 2012. Retrieved February 5, 2012.
  3. ^ "[1]." Houlihan Lokey. Retrieved December 19, 2011. "Registered Office : 1930 Century Park West Los Angeles, CA 90067-6802, United States"
  4. ^ a b http://www.hl.com/email/pdf/factsfigures/Houlihan_Lokey_FactsFigures.pdf
  5. ^ "[2]." Lehman Fees Could Reach $1.4 Billion, Besting Enron (Update1). Retrieved December 19, 2011.
  6. ^ http://www.hl.com/us/achievements.aspx

External links

  • Official website