Apax's Operational Excellence Practice hosts eighth KnowledgeNow conference
26 October 2018
Apax Partners recently held its eighth annual KnowledgeNow portfolio company thought leadership and networking event in Boston, USA.
Hosted by Apax’s Operational Excellence Practice (“OEP”), a team of experienced operating professionals engaged in accelerating growth in the Apax Funds’ portfolio companies, the theme of this year’s conference was “First. Principles”. This referred to the need to constantly challenge accepted ways of thinking to win in a world of rapid and disruptive change.
Over the course of two days, leaders from across the portfolio were joined by members of the Apax OEP team to address this topic from a range of macro and micro angles, offering commentary on the challenges of our future as well as practical solutions to the issues faced by businesses today.
We were honoured to be joined by speakers including: James Comey, former Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, who outlined his perspective on the importance of strong leadership in times of change; Sir Ronald Cohen, co-founder of Apax Partners and impact investment pioneer, who spoke passionately on the global impact investing movement as a force for good; and Tim Urban, TED talker, who described how business leaders need to constantly search for new and better solutions in today’s unprecedented technological age.
In attendance were 148 executives from 32 portfolio companies which together represent more than $13 billion in annual sales and $35 billion in enterprise value.
Seth Brody, Partner and Global Head of the Operational Excellence Practice at Apax Partners, said: “Now in its eighth year, KnowledgeNow was bigger than ever with about 80% of portfolio companies in the global Apax buyout funds joining us. We were particularly pleased that the C-level decision-takers and difference-makers from our executive ranks comprise the vast majority of attendees.
“We were reminded over the course of these two days the world is changing fast, and businesses need to adapt quicker than ever. The conference provides a vital forum for executives to share insights, experiences and best practices. We are delighted the OEP can facilitate these conversations as well as provide practical solutions to help portfolio companies turn ideas into actions to accelerate growth.”