Simon Read is a co-founder and
Director of Otus & Co and Partner of Otus Corporate Finance LLP.
He worked for 16 years to 2002 in Corporate Finance at Dresdner
Kleinwort Wasserstein where he was Managing Director responsible
for the hospitality, travel and transport sectors, dealing with
M&A, IPOs, secondary offerings, privatisations and general
From 1986 to 1990 he worked on a wide range of projects for
companies such as Rio Tinto, Smith & Nephew, Saatchi & Saatchi
and Bowater and was closely involved in the privatisation of the
Electricity Supply Industry in England and Wales, managing the
prospectus preparation for four of the 12 regional electricity
In the early 1990s he was engaged on a series of major
assignments for British Aerospace, including the rights issue in
1991, the re-organisation of its regional aircraft activities in
1992, the sale of its corporate jets business in 1993, the sale
of Rover to BMW in 1994 and the restructuring of the
four-partner Airbus consortium. In 1995, he advised Rio Tinto,
devising the new structural elements of its award-winning
synthetic merger with CRA of Australia. Also in this period he
worked for Gallaher on its public offer for Invergordon
Distillers in 1993 and for Boddington on its hostile bid for
Devenish in 1991.
Since 1995, he has focused on the transport industry. He advised
on the international equity offering of Finnair in 1995 and he
has worked for BAA, Iberia, Vienna Airport, Thai International
and Aer Lingus. In 1998, he advised on the IPO of British
Regional Airlines and acted for DHL on the sale of a strategic
stake to Deutsche Post World Net, working further for DHL the
following year on the sales of DHL shares by Nissho Iwai and
Japan Airlines. As well as the
DHL deals, during 1999 he advised on the privatisation of TAP
Air Portugal, the rights issue of Austrian Airlines, the
purchase of a stake in South African Airways by Swissair, the
sale of a strategic stake in British Midland to Lufthansa and
the privatisation of LOT Polish Airlines.
In 2000 he began to work with Paul Slattery to expand into the
hospitality and travel industries, being appointed, together
with Paul, in autumn 2000 to advise Compass Group on the sale of
the Forte hotel brands, the largest ever hotel chain auction.
Also in 2000 he acted for Swissair on its merger discussions
with Alitalia. In 2001, in addition to completing the Forte
sale, he advised on the IPO of Fraport (Frankfurt Airport), the
largest ever airport equity offering and assisted on the defence
of TBI from a hostile bid by Vinci.
Since co-founding Otus in 2002, Simon has worked with Otus
colleagues on a range of advisory and M&A assignments for
clients including NHH, GE Capital, Whitbread, Rezidor, Carlson,
Scandic, Holidaybreak, Radisson Edwardian, Expedia, All Leisure,
HBOS, RBS Barclays Capital, Alchemy Partners and others.
Simon has an undergraduate degree in Philosophy, Politics and
Economics from Oxford University and a post-graduate degree in
Philosophy from London University. He qualified as a Chartered
Accountant with Price Waterhouse.