Adrian John Smith, Finance Expert in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Adrian John Smith

Finance Expert in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

Member since August 18, 2017
Adrian has 12+ years of private equity and M&A experience, mainly at Standard Chartered Private Equity where he led several transactions with a total value of over $500 million. As a freelancer, he enjoys working with multiple clients, leveraging his strong financial and operational background to build budgets, execute complex equity and debt raises, and to conduct due diligence and valuations, particularly in turnaround situations.
Adrian is now available for hire

Career Highlights


Case studies


  • Founder | Partner

    2016 - PRESENT
    Arkana Partners
    • Built a Sub-Saharan private equity firm in partnership with the ex-heads of Carlyle and KKR Africa (with access to over $300 million of funding).
    • Led all the transaction execution activities for the firm, including investment appraisal, financial modeling, legal agreements, and due diligence.
    • Raised $25 million for a Southern African retail business.
    • Originated and executed a $20 million investment in an industrial platform holding company.
    • Enhanced financial and management reporting for $100 million turnover grocery retailer.
    • Advised a manufacturing business on its M&A strategy, including assessing the $50 million acquisition of a competitor.
    Focus areas: Valuation, Three Statement Operating Model, Fundraising, Financial Reporting, Financial Planning & Analysis (FP&A), Private Equity, Mergers & Acquisitions (M&A)
  • Executive Director

    2008 - 2016
    Standard Chartered Private Equity
    • Executed 12 transactions, totaling over $500 million.
    • Led the operational turnaround, financial restructuring, and eventual sale of a $55 million agriculture investment.
    • Raised over $200 million for an investment in the largest packaging business in Nigeria. Awarded the "Private Equity Africa Deal of the Year" in 2013.
    • Actively managed five investments across the FMCG, oil & gas, agriculture, packaging, telecom, and retail sectors.
    • Established a greenfield packaging plant on behalf of a portfolio company; negotiated the joint venture agreement, identified the location of the factory, appointed the local management team, and built the financial plan and model.
    • Conducted due diligence investigations and developed financial models/plans for over 50 different companies in various sectors.
    • Performed the duty of the chief financial officer of the division (part-time). Responsible for strategic, operational, and investment planning; forecasting; insightful analyses; and timely reporting.
    Focus areas: Capital Investment Appraisals, Financial Reporting, Fundraising, Three Statement Operating Model, Budgeting, Private Equity, Financial Restructuring, Financial Planning & Analysis (FP&A), Mergers & Acquisitions (M&A)
  • Associate

    2002 - 2008
    Standard Bank
    • Executed investments totaling $50+ million in numerous businesses; conducted financial modeling, legal, and due diligence.
    • Conducted due diligence on an industrial engineering company for a potential acquisition; included market and competitive analyses as well as business model development.
    • Developed a market-risk-reporting framework for the bank's largest commodity clients.
    Focus areas: Financial System Implementation, Budgeting, Valuation, Private Equity, Three Statement Operating Model, Financial Planning & Analysis (FP&A), Integrated Financial Statements, Internal Audits, Mergers & Acquisitions (M&A)


  • Chartered Accountant (South Africa) in Accounting
    1998 - 2004
    South African Institute of Chartered Accountants - Johannesburg, South Africa
  • Master's degree in Accounting
    2001 - 2001
    University of Johannesburg - Johannesburg, South Africa
  • Bachelor's degree in Accounting
    1998 - 2000
    University of Johannesburg - Johannesburg, South Africa

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