Whether you’re an experienced buyout executive looking to jump ship or a general partner trying to fill an executive slot, you would be well served to include Alison Bellino Johnston and Danielle Caston Strazzini in your contacts.
Bellino and Strazzini left the executive search firm CPI in June to start their own boutique shop, BellCast Partners. BellCast seeks to fill a sort of middle market niche for search firms, focusing on MBA to partner-level recruiting. By contrast, other search firms recruit analysts and other junior executives only or senior-level partners only.
Bellino and Strazzini have placed executives for multi-billion dollar global firms and mid-market shops alike, though they declined to name any clients. In one case a couple years ago, they said they helped place eight principals at a large buyout shop.
The two estimate their network of contacts to be around 5,000 private equity professionals. Often a successful buyout executive who might be based in one part of the country asks Bellino and Strazzini to keep him or her apprised of opportunities closer to family in another part of the country. In other cases, an executive at a firm whose fundraising isn’t going as well as planned might want to pursue options at another firm. “We’re an intermediary that both sides trust,” Bellino said.
The two have worked together since 2003 and collectively placed more than 100 executives, working with more than 75 private equity firms. General partners focused on finding and executing deals don’t always have the time or the contacts to find new people themselves, Strazzini said.
“High-quality private equity firms do not want to post jobs on-line, they want people they trust to reach out and call the best folks not looking for jobs,” Strazzini said. “They know we are trustworthy, have good information to share and are not going to try and sell them on something that does not make sense for their career.”
E-mail: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org
Web site: www.bellcastpartners.com
Correction: The Need To Meet column originally posted on Nov. 29, 2010, incorrectly referred to Alison Bellino Johnston, a co-founder of BellCast Partners, in the fourth paragraph as “Bellini.” Also, Alison Bellino Johnston prefers to be referred to on second reference as Bellino, not Johnston, as the original article referred to her on second reference.