The Firm

Red Lion Partners is an independent Corporate Advisory firm for Small and Midsize Enterprise (SME) clients globally.

Our expertise and services to SMEs encompass four major activities:

  • Corporate Finance, Capital Markets, M&A and Fundraising
  • Corporate Strategy & Business Development
  • Third-Party Marketing
  • Technology Advisory

We seek to partner with select SME’s, to jointly achieve long-term enterprise value enhancement with a holistic ESG driven approach and share our deep international financial expertise from top investment banks in combination with operational expertise in many industries.

We offer select SME clients a unique value proposition and best-in-class solutions to unlock their financial and strategic potential and lead them to sustainable long-term growth and profitability. Together, we define KPI’s and processes and implement the right strategy until we reach optimal long-term execution. Working in partnership with our clients to drive incremental enterprise value, we often structure our fees as part equity.

Our extensive valuation and transaction experience and proven professional and operational expertise are the basis of our thorough understanding of the daily challenges and long-term objectives of SME entrepreneurs. All Red Lion partners are also company owners and operators, so we can identify with our clients’ challenges from our own experience all red lion partners.

Our SME client engagement process typically starts through a detailed business analysis and due diligence process. This process often involves integrated analysis across several key areas including financials, operations, HR, ESG, Tax and Legal. We assess sector valuations and benchmark our clients' metrics to local and global peer group and industry benchmarks. Flowing from this, we triangulate key areas to help our clients unlock further potential and overcome challenges. Our recommendations/solutions often span strategic, financial, operational and execution elements. Through this process RLP becomes a close partner with our clients to guide them successfully through the execution of an often-evolved strategic focus and business plan. This may variously span restructuring, fund-raising, and operational business process evolution.

Red Lion Partners has an extensive global network of institutional investors, family offices, venture capital investors, private equity investors and private debt lenders. These relationships are key to helping drive our clients’ sustainable success.

With our focus on select long-term client relationships, we look for an optimal match of long-term investors and strategic partners for our clients. To complement this, we look to invest our intellectual capital, long-standing relationships, and financial capital into our client engagements. We hence look to create long-term partnership with our clients and look or clients with whom we have a good strategic fit.

Key criteria in our client selection process include:

  • Values & Philosophy towards Stakeholders
  • Executive Management Team Diversity
  • Openness to ESG principles
  • Executive Management Team Ready to Invest Time and Money to become Best in Industry
  • Realistic Opportunity for RLP to add Significant Value
  • Executive Management Team Ready to Leverage RLP Core Strengths, Expertise, Network

For our clients, Red Lion Partners is an integrated solution provider and strategic partner in driving long-term growth and execution optimization. We offer solutions for many of the challenges today’s SME’s face across business strategy and financial optimization, to process improvement and technology-based automation, and systemization. These are focused toward driving effective long-term sustainable value enhancement.

Why Red Lion Partners Focuses on Small and Medium-sized Enterprises

According to research by the EIB, OECD and the World Bank, there are currently more than 420 million SMEs in the world (Asia 175 million, US 45 million, Europe 50 million, ROW 150 million).

More than 80% of all companies in the world are SMEs, many are family-owned businesses, and many are also global leaders in their respective segments.

SMEs account for more than 80% of global private-sector jobs and generate approximately 80% of global private-sector GDP. SMEs pay more than 85% of global corporate taxes.

The driving factors of success for SMEs are quality, agility, adaptability, and innovation. Many of these are engraved into the organizational “DNA” companies.

To maximize the effectiveness of these characteristics, SMEs must also navigate a dynamically changing environment defined by the following challenges:

  • SMEs are often underfunded to drive optimal growth
  • SME’s size in globalization is becoming more challenging
  • Traditional bank financing for strategic long term growth needs is becoming increasingly
    more difficult and restrictive
  • Intensification of regulation and technological compliance are driving new administrative,
    operational, and cost concerns.
  • Competition is becoming increasingly more global and challenging.

Due to those challenges, many small and medium-sized companies that today are still successful may, in the medium term, be forced out of their markets.


There are more than 100,000 SMEs, in Europe and the US each year, where the owners are turning 65 and have no succession or exit strategies. Whilst the active entrepreneur who developed the company has a passion for, and “lives for” the company, the next generation may not see their company as their prime life focus. On that basis, it is even more important for such companies to put in place and effective, well-balanced, and diversified executive team to continue to succeed.

Global competition and critical size challenges are becoming increasingly problematic for many SMEs, and corporate advisors can bring many management solutions and stimulate strategic acquisitions. Additionally, and often overlooked as a key option, a timely divesture can also be the right entrepreneurial decision to embrace new opportunities and take advantage of key challenges, particularly in the absence of a suitable successor. With such a sale to the right buyer, an SME owners’ life’s work, and the jobs created therein in the entire stakeholder vertical, as well as the wealth acquired in recent decades can be secured with the right corporate advisor solution.

The strategic decisions regarding acquisitions or the sale of the company require careful planning outside the day-to-day business. Such implementation requires a partner like Red Lion Partners who is familiar with the particular factors of success.