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About Simon Robey

Simon Robey is a British investment banker.

Simon Robey Headquarter Location

England,

United Kingdom

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Latest Simon Robey News

London’s Singing Rainmaker Robey Has No Plans to Slow Down, Sell

Apr 13, 2022

12:01 PM IST, 13 Apr 2022 9:30 AM IST, 13 Apr 2022 12:01 PM IST, 13 Apr 2022 Save (Bloomberg) -- Whether from a Georgian townhouse in London’s West End or the glass-cased offices of Canary Wharf, Simon Robey has been quietly helping shape the U.K.’s corporate landscape for almost 40 years. (Bloomberg) -- Whether from a Georgian townhouse in London’s West End or the glass-cased offices of Canary Wharf, Simon Robey has been quietly helping shape the U.K.’s corporate landscape for almost 40 years. During that time, the British investment banker has steered FTSE 100 companies including AstraZeneca Plc, Rio Tinto Plc and SABMiller Plc through mergers, acquisitions and takeover defenses and established himself as a go-to adviser for top executives on more than $1 trillion of deals. At 61, he has no intention of slowing down. “I’m not on some kind of glide path to retiring at 65 and to playing golf or hanging out at the opera house,” Robey said in a rare interview. “That doesn’t mean I’m going to work until I drop but I really, really enjoy it and I get better at it every year.” Last month, his boutique Robey Warshaw advised National Grid Plc on the sale of 60% of its 9.6 billion-pound ($12.5 billion) gas transmission business to a consortium including Macquarie Group Ltd. The transaction went ahead amid the broader slump in dealmaking that had taken hold since Russia invaded Ukraine on Feb. 24. While the conflict brought an abrupt end to the record-breaking run in M&A that began in mid-2020, Robey says the impact on deals hasn’t been as severe as in previous times of geopolitical stress. “I’m old enough to have advised clients through the Gulf Wars and 9/11,” he said. “I think that the corporate reaction to this is ‘We can still see a way of doing most business’. It feels a very forensic reaction to a shock event.” The value of dealmaking fell by more than a third in the month after Russia invaded its neighbor, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. While steep, that’s much less than what happened in the wake of the Sept. 11 attacks in 2001 and collapse of Wall Street bank Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. in 2008, the data show. Away from the day job, the war in Ukraine is occupying Robey in other ways. “We’re all to a lesser or greater degree captivated by the human cost of all this,” he said. “We’re trying to get some refugees over from the Ukraine as a personal matter.” London Pressures Robey was born in London and studied English at Oxford University, where he was also a choral scholar; the baritone’s passion for song would lead him to become chairman of the board of trustees of the Royal Opera House and be knighted by the Queen for services to music. His career in finance began in the early 1980s at Lazard Ltd., where he spent four years before joining Morgan Stanley. While at the U.S. banking giant, Robey worked on the $70 billion merger of British drugmakers Glaxo Wellcome Plc and SmithKlineBeecham Plc in 2000 and advised HBOS Plc, then Britain’s biggest mortgage lender, on its 2008 acquisition by Lloyds Banking Group Plc. As one of the U.K.’s chief rainmakers, Robey has witnessed the highs and lows of London as a global financial center. While he acknowledges that the capital is “under some pressure at the moment” after Brexit, stiff competition from New York and archaic regulatory characteristics, he’s optimistic that the Big Smoke can evolve. “I’m confident that it will because somehow, for centuries, London has been a really important capital market,” he said. “Not withstanding Brexit and not withstanding the emergence of all these technology companies in the U.S., a way will be found to keep it centrally important.” Downsizing Dealmaker In 2012 , Robey decided to leave Morgan Stanley after 25 years. It wasn’t long before he was back on the scene with Robey Warshaw, the firm he still runs with Simon Warshaw, another of the City’s best-known dealmakers with strong links to Vodafone Group Plc, and Morgan Stanley alumnus Philip Apostolides. Theirs is one of a small number of specialist advisory shops run by seasoned bankers with long-standing links to blue-chip clients. Since its founding, Robey Warshaw has advised on U.K. megadeals including BG Group Plc’s sale to Royal Dutch Shell Plc , Comcast Corp.’s winning bid for U.K. broadcaster Sky Plc and London Stock Exchange Group Plc ’s purchase of Refinitiv. Whether at a bulge-bracket or specialist shop, bankers need to be mindful of their place in the boardroom to build a successful career, Robey said. “We are not the decision-makers, we are the agents to the principals,” he said. “Our job as seniors is to speak truth to power. Give advice without fear or favor. You can’t have a long career in a big capital market if there’s any doubt in anyone’s mind about the independence and impartiality of your advice.” Robey Warshaw employs roughly 15 staff at its offices on Grosvenor Square in London’s upmarket Mayfair district. Its 18th century building was once a home to John Adams, the second U.S. president. Today, it houses another ex-politician: George Osborne, who served as chancellor under former U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron. Osborne’s appointment last year was a surprising one by a firm that until then hadn’t added a new partner to its ranks. “There’s no point in having someone like George in the building unless you support them in winning new business,” Robey said. “He’s not here to be a celebrity politician. He’s here to help us enrich our advice and grow our business, which he is.” Robey has no plans to make other big-name hires, or to grow the firm to any more than 25 over the next five years, he said. Running a small crew focused on blockbuster mandates means challenging, but lucrative work. Big Paydays Robey Warshaw’s profit available for discretionary division among its members rose more than two-thirds to 30.1 million pounds in the year ended March 2021, according to its latest accounts filed with the U.K.’s Companies House. The boardroom access and ability to generate that kind of return will make any such firm an attractive takeover target to others in the field, especially in London at a time when American banks are taking the lion’s share of M&A fees. For Robey and his partners, the message is clear: there’s no sale or listing on the cards. “We’re a very obvious firm if you want to build an instant big-cap U.K. advisory franchise, but we’d be enormously difficult to persuade to do anything,” Robey said. “I’m not desperately seeking to make the money that would be involved in selling out.” ©2022 Bloomberg L.P.

Simon Robey Investments

1 Investments

Simon Robey has made 1 investments. Their latest investment was in nr2 as part of their Seed on December 12, 2021.

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Simon Robey Investments Activity

investments chart

Date

Round

Company

Amount

New?

Co-Investors

Sources

12/23/2021

Seed

nr2

$30M

Yes

2

Date

12/23/2021

Round

Seed

Company

nr2

Amount

$30M

New?

Yes

Co-Investors

Sources

2

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