Bluestone Capital Partners, a new investment bank, has opened in McLean, Va. The bank — launched by veteran bankers John Allen and Susan Gabay — will focus on middle-market companies in the aerospace, defense, and information technology industries.
Bluestone Capital Partners, a new investment bank whose two principals have successfully advised business owners and executives on over 100 mergers, acquisitions, and other transactions involving aerospace, defense, information technology, and professional services companies, today announced that it had opened its new headquarters in Northern Virginia.
Headed by two highly regarded and experienced investment banking professionals in these industries, John Allen and Susan Gabay bring over 25 years of combined experience and success to the market. Allen, a former owner of the investment bank Windsor Group and president of Quarterdeck Investment Partners, serves as Bluestone’s chief executive officer. Gabay, previously of Goldman Sachs in New York and more recently senior vice president of BB&T Capital Markets | Windsor Group, is Bluestone’s managing director.
Allen said that Bluestone’s creation addresses the need for a new way to do investment banking in today’s market. “We know from experience that the merger and acquisition process is highly complex, and thousands of nuances affect the value of a transaction and its probability of success,” he said. “Buyers and sellers have become more sophisticated as the economic, political and regulatory environments have become more volatile. Bluestone will help clients navigate through this new and far more unpredictable environment.”
According to Gabay, Bluestone’s unique approach will be very appealing to those who need investment banking assistance. “Bluestone is not just another corporate matchmaker interested in a quick fee,” she said. “Our strong preference is to work with a client long before a particular transaction is being considered so we can use our deep industry insight and relationships to develop and implement value-maximizing strategies.”
Bluestone will also be unique in that it will be what Allen and Gabay call a “ThinkBank” that will provide companies with innovative ideas and insights that better position them for success. “Rather than doing what most investment banks do by waiting for clients to come to them, we will lead the thought process and bring ideas to our clients and other important relationships,” Allen said. “Being the ThinkBank will make Bluestone the place where clients come for counsel well before a specific opportunity presents itself,” Gabay added.
In the coming weeks, Bluestone expects to announce the hiring of a number of big-name, experienced professionals. These professionals will further broaden Bluestone’s industry experience and expertise, and provide substantial additional relationships and perspectives.
About John Allen
John Allen is one of the investment banking pioneers in the Washington, D.C. area. During his nearly two decades in investment banking, Allen has helped build two highly successful firms that were acquired by other financial institutions. He has been involved in more than 100 deals with and for Fortune 500 and middle-market companies. This includes some of the biggest names in the aerospace/defense, information technology and professional and technical services sectors, such as AECOM, General Dynamics, Honeywell, Lockheed Martin, ManTech, Raytheon, SAIC, The Carlyle Group, and Veritas Capital.
Because of his success and thought leadership, Allen has received many industry accolades including Investment Banker of the Year from the Association for Corporate Growth. He is frequently interviewed as an investment banking and government sector expert and has authored articles published in and been quoted by Barron’s, Washington Technology, Washington Business Journal, The Deal and The Washington Post, among many others. Allen has also briefed members of Congress and congressional committees on issues important to small and middle-market businesses.
Prior to founding Bluestone, Allen was co-owner of Windsor Group before it was acquired by BB&T Corporation in 2005. He also founded Windsor Capital Partners Fund I, a private equity/mezzanine fund focused on investing in small and middle-market companies. Before joining Windsor Group, Allen was president of Quarterdeck Investment Partners, a firm that specialized in providing investment banking services to aerospace, defense, and information technology companies. He helped lead Quarterdeck from a start-up to the eventual sale of a minority position to Jefferies & Company.
About Susan Gabay
Bluestone founding partner Susan Gabay has more than 12 years of experience working on Wall Street and investment banking that includes a number of high-profile successes. Although she has been involved in a wide variety of transactions and sectors, Gabay’s career has focused primarily on advising companies, investors, and executives operating in the aerospace/defense, information technology, and professional and technical services markets. Her counsel has led to the successful acquisition, sale, and financing of numerous government contractor transactions.
Prior to co-founding Bluestone, Gabay was a senior vice president with BB&T Capital Markets | Windsor Group. In this role, she was involved in more than 30 mergers and acquisitions, including sell-side and buy-side advisory assignments, divestitures, recapitalizations, and fairness opinions. She advised Fortune 500 companies and industry leaders, such as Marsh & McLennan Companies, Inc., CACI International Inc., and ManTech International Corporation in their divestitures of selected government services assets. Her expertise helped guide leading middle-market businesses in their sales to some of the biggest names in government contracting, including Raytheon, General Dynamics, and KEYW Corporation, and to private equity groups, such as Veritas Capital, Cerberus Capital Management, and Lake Capital. Before joining Windsor Group, Gabay worked for Goldman Sachs in New York.