Meet Luca Bucelli
Luca Bucelli started his career at Lehman Brothers in the early 2000s, leaving in 2007 to complete an MBA at NYU Stern School of Business. In 2008, amid the subprime mortgage crisis, Lehman Brothers collapsed, triggering a global financial crisis and sending the S&P 500 -57% from its peak. Around this time, Luca graduated from his MBA program and joined AlixPartners as a financial restructuring specialist. It was an interesting moment in his career, says Bucelli, who is now co-head of Italy at Tikehau Capital, a large European alternative asset manager.
In 2009, “I thought it was the right moment to join AlixPartners because we were going through the post-financial crisis resetting of over-levered LBOs,” explains Luca.
He spent five years working in AlixPartners’ Paris and Milan offices righting upturned corporations and learning from the most seasoned colleagues.
“That hands-on experience that I got working alongside management teams in critical situations at the company premises is something many people in finance don't have the chance to experience. Investment professionals tend to work in their offices, analyze documents, certainly attend management presentations, but really don't live the company's experience from the inside,” he says, “That experience early on becomes very valuable down the road.”
Luca moved back to Milan in 2015 to open the Tikehau Capital office there, which has since grown to a team of 20 with over 30 transactions in the country and a few billion dollars of fundraising from local investors. The firm works primarily in private equity, private debt and real assets.
As an investment executive, Luca very often works with AlixPartners, in due diligence, performance improvement projects and he also stays in touch with his former colleagues.
The one constant is the need to always select and attract the best talent, a value by which AlixPartners defines itself as a company, and one that has stayed with Luca. “The AlixPartners experience is very valuable today in evaluating management teams and their plans, making sure they are achievable. Selecting the right entrepreneur to back, the right management team, it’s key in generating investment returns,” he says.
His experience, moving from the U.S. to the U.K., France, and home to Italy, has given him the tools and perspective to meet the moment.
“It's super important to live abroad, learn the local languages, understand different cultures and how business is done in different locations,” says Luca. “You can then leverage this understanding to bridge the gap between cultures and create relationships of trust that last. And this is key to get deals done.”