Tom Simpson – Origination Manager
Tom joined Pemba Capital Partners in January 2020. Tom has five years of top-tier accounting experience providing tax, accounting, succession planning and growth advisory services to a suite of private clients ranging from start-ups to large family businesses and the families behind them. Most recently, Tom was a Senior Analyst in the Deloitte Private Sydney office. Tom works on new portfolio business acquisitions as well as with our partnered businesses on growth opportunities through direct acquisition.
You spent some time oversees playing tennis and living abroad. Where did you go and how was that experience?
I played three consecutive summer seasons of club tennis in Germany. This ended up being roughly 6 months of each year from 2011-2013 living in Cologne and Dusseldorf. It was an amazing opportunity being able to play competitive tennis abroad and experience a different country and culture. I also made a number of great friends along the way!
You spent several years in the Private Clients tax team at Deloitte before joining Pemba. What motivated you to switch across to Private Equity?
I have always been interested by family and founder led businesses. This was the core of my client base at Deloitte Private working on not only tax advisory engagements, but also succession and legacy planning. I also enjoy the opportunity to build relationships with these people and hence why I was drawn to an Origination role in Private Equity where I could apply my background to help partner with Australian SMEs.
When deciding to make the switch across, what attracted you to Pemba?
A number of things attracted me to Pemba. Firstly, the focus on the SME part of the market appealed to me given my background and passion for working with founder led businesses. Other factors included their partnership model and the dedicated Origination team.
You get to meet with passionate business founders on a daily basis. What is the one thing that continues to impress you about these founders and management teams?
One thing that continues to impress me about the founders and management teams I meet with is their agility and resilience. There are countless examples of this however more recently through events such as Covid-19 and the floods, we have seen founders pivoting their business models and continuing to grow which is great to see!
What advice could you give to someone finishing University who is looking to make it in the industry?
Be brave and try to grow your network by meeting as many people as possible as early as possible!
Tom’s book recommendation:
As the Crow Flies – Jeffrey Archer