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Trending on peHUB this week: Is an MBA really worth it? Expert advice for your PE career. And job openings at Alliance Bernstein, Silicon Valley Bank and Vista Equity.

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Trending on peHUB this week: Blackstone is raising its second “tactical opportunities” fund, fears of a correction in the secondaries market, and Fortress, GE Capital and SBJ are looking for talent.

PE-backed NRC completes Sureclean acquisition

National Response Corp., a portfolio company of J.F. Lehman & Company, has completed its acquisition of Sureclean Limited. No financial terms were disclosed. BNP Paribas Securities Corp arranged senior debt financing for the deal while Ernst & Young served as financial advisor to NRC. Based in the UK, Sureclean is a provider of specialty environmental and industrial solutions.

Dunedin’s Hawksford Appoints New CEO

Hawksford, an independent trust company which is backed by UK mid-market private equity firm Dunedin, has appointed Maxine Rawlins, a partner at Ernst & Young, to the position of chief executive from 2014 when the incumbent chief executive, Peter Murley, retires. A partner at Ernst & Young in Jersey, Rawlins currently leads the Channel Islands Tax Practice and is Head of EMEIA Asset Management Tax.

Advised by Clearsight Advisors, Semphonic’s Sale to Ernst & Young is Completed

Ernst & Young has completed its acquisition of Semphonic, a digital measurement and data analytics consulting firm. The merchant bank Clearsight Advisors served as the exclusive strategic and financial advisor to Semphonic, the firm announced today. PRESS RELEASE: Clearsight Advisors, Inc. (“Clearsight”) is pleased to announce the successful completion of a strategic transaction in the […]

Apax Partners Completes Cole Haan Acquisition

Apax Partners has completed the previously announced acquisition of Cole Haan, a designer and retailer of premium footwear and related accessories, from NIKE. Jefferies & Company acted as financial advisor and provided financing to Apax. Kirkland & Ellis LLP provided legal advice and Ernst & Young provided accounting and tax advice.

Reuters – AA Owners Hire Ernst & Young to Value Business

The owners of the AA have hired accountants Ernst & Young to begin work on valuing the 107-year-old motoring services company, writes Reuters. The process could see the AA eventually sold or floated on the stock market for as much as 5 billion pounds ($8.1 billion), writes Reuters. Acromas is backed by Charterhouse, CVC and Permira and was formed in 2007 through a 6.1 billion pound merger of AA and Saga.

E&Y Predicts a “Sizable Uptick” in U.S. M&A Next Year

Break out the champagne and caviar! Good times are right around the corner, says Ernst & Young, whose Transaction Advisory Services group just published a very rosy 2012 M&A outlook. Certainly, the division has its fingers crossed. It’s quick to acknowledge that 2011 won’t go in the history books as the most memorable year for […]

Study: Need a Fast Flip? Don’t Change the Management Team

Ernst & Young has just released its fifth annual study of how PE investors create value, based on 233 of the largest exits in North America over the last five years. The idea, of course: to better understand the best practices of the industry’s leaders. The study is a little squishy – you won’t find […]

The Good-But-Not-Great News About Venture Returns

Venture returns are improving, but it’s still too early to say we’ve seen the last of poor industry performance. With the exception of the 15-year returns, which declined slightly, venture capital performance improved across all time horizons from the end of Q3 to the end of Q4 2010, according to Cambridge Associates and the National […]

Two Views On Cleantech Investing (It’s All In The Numbers)

By most measures, cleantech venture investing reached a respectable total just shy of $4 billion last year. The precise calculation was $3.7 billion, according to the MoneyTree survey released last month by the National Venture Capital Association, PricewaterhouseCoopers and Thomson Reuters (publisher of this blog). That is unless you are at Ernst & Young and […]

Flash Survey: Throw The Book at Ernst & Young, Execs Say

Nearly half of business executives responding to a survey on Monday agree that New York’s attorney general should go ahead with fraud charges against Ernst & Young.

The Wall Street Journal on Monday reported that the accounting firm could face civil fraud charges in connection with its role in the 2008 collapse of investment bank Lehman Brothers.

498 executives from an array of industries participated in the survey, which was conducted by Argyle Executive Forum, a New York-based professional services firm.

Fewer than a third of respondents (27.3 percent) say the New York attorney general shouldn’t move ahead with charges, and another quarter (24.3 percent) say they aren’t sure.

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