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This will be a panel discussion, with audience participation encouraged, with three people giving their view on the future of retail and the current trend of using CVA’s to manage their property creditors, and their leasehold estates. We hope to have three diverse speakers, one from PwC, one from an investor in distressed or challenged companies and the third, from a very different perspective, representing landlords.

About the speaker/s

Steve Pell

Steve joined Hilco in 2008 and has led the turnarounds of a number of high profile Hilco deals, designing and managing financial and operational plans across a number of sectors including retail, manufacturing and engineering.

Prior to joining Hilco, Steve worked as a Chartered Accountant with a leading professional services firm, advising lenders, corporates and other stakeholders on turnaround situations.

Ross Connock

Ross is a Director in PwC’s Mid Market South Restructuring team with 30 years experience gained across formal and advisory assignments for a variety of stakeholders.

Ross’ sector experience is broad and he had worked across the the UK and Northern European markets.

Alongside his core restructuring and recovery work Ross also advises Sponsors and Trustees in relation to DB Pension scheme funding issues and pension led restructurings.

Selected retail related experience includes: An AMA for MS Mode, a Netherlands based retailer of women’s fashion operating online and through a store estate in six European countries;
Advising on the restructuring plan for Countrywide Farmers involving their exit from retail;
Contingency planning for Palmer & Harvey, the grocery, alcohol and tobacco wholesaler; and
Advising a luxury brand supplier to House of Fraser following the recent well publicised pre pack;

Ross’ 2018 has so far been dominated by the Carillion liquidation where he’s been part of a team focused on transitioning 130 Facilities Management contracts…...but that is a whole other topic!

Fiona Brownfoot

Fiona is a Director at Hicks Baker, heading up the Retail, Leisure and Restaurants team. Hicks Baker are the only firm in the Thames Valley to have a dedicated team solely focusing on the retail and leisure market. Fiona's expertise is wide ranging, from disposals and acquisitions, to investment and development advice and rent reviews, and voicing her opinions on the retail world to anyone who will listen! In a previous business life Fiona has been a land buyer and worked for Berkshire County Council. Outside the office her interests are golf, dancing and retail therapy - lots of it! 


PwC Business Recovery Services

We work alongside businesses to negotiate great outcomes at speed, finding the optimal solution to financial and operational challenges by reducing risk and protecting value where time and cash are tight.

Whether a company has gone from thriving to surviving an imminent crisis, or is just looking to ‘fix the roof while the sun is shining’, we can support management teams to:


  • reduce balance sheet stress,
  • generate cash and reduce costs,
  • increase profitability,
  • refinance and find the best source of capital to support business objectives; and
  • reduce long-term pensions and other liability costs.


Whatever the solution, we pre-empt and manage road blocks until the job is done.



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