Sphere of Influence: Originates many of Huron’s deals and influences public policy for the middle market as co-chair of ACG’s public policy committee
Gretchen Perkins originated the full-time business development role at Huron Capital. Having performed the role for about 15 years, she has contributed to setting the standard for the development of the origination role in the industry. “We are building a 20-year pipeline at Huron Capital,” says Perkins. “People do business with people they know, like and trust. Good business development targets each of those attributes, which leads to sustained, actionable deal flow.” Perkins’ well regarded road warrior status certainly back up that strategy.
In addition to her deal development work, Perkins is the voice of the middle-market private equity industry in Washington, D.C, by serving as co-chair of the Public Policy Committee for the Association for Corporate Growth. Perkins is involved in educating policymakers and regulators about the benefits of the asset class. “I am explaining our contribution to the economy and striving to achieve relief from regulators,” says Perkins. “We meet with relevant legislators and their staffs and explain how our industry really works, and it is making a difference.”
During the last Congressional session, HR 1105 resolution was passed in the U.S. House of Representatives, exempting private equity from having to register with the SEC. Unfortunately, it did not make it through the Senate, but it was still a step in the right direction considering many lawmakers didn’t even understand middle market private equity prior to ACG’s lobbying efforts, explains Perkins.
Now Perkins and the team are focusing on fine-tuning and ratcheting down the registration requirements. “We have an ongoing dialogue, which is collaborative,” says Perkins. “It is very important to educate policymakers about these items, as it is our hope to be impactful in future legislation and regulation.”