Grant Thornton expands private equity offerings


Experienced business leaders Bill McManus and Alex Arata join the firm’s Private Equity industry practice to offer Value Creation Planning services


CHICAGO — Grant Thornton LLP, one of America’s largest audit, tax and advisory firms, is expanding its private equity capabilities by hiring Bill McManus and Alex Arata to lead the firm’s Value Creation Planning services offering. In these roles, McManus and Arata will provide Grant Thornton’s private equity clients and their portfolio companies with comprehensive solutions that help drive organic and inorganic strategic growth and accelerate enterprise value creation through the entire transaction lifecycle.


Greg Westfall, Grant Thornton’s national managing principal of Private Equity, says McManus and Arata have arrived at the perfect time for clients — noting that private equity clients are under increasing pressure to take a more integrated and holistic approach to value creation beyond just pure market expansion and revenue growth. This approach accounts for variables like processes and supply chain efficiencies, customer experience and pricing, and digital and finance transformation.


“In today’s fast-paced environment, private equity firms and their portfolio companies have numerous levers to pull to accelerate value creation, and it’s vital they prioritize these initiatives and align all parts of the organization around the highest value drivers,” Westfall says. “Bill and Alex will further establish Grant Thornton as a premier provider of professional services in the private equity space, delivering our clients with the high-quality value creation planning that is becoming increasingly critical.”


McManus joins the firm as a managing director in the Strategy and Transactions practice. He brings to Grant Thornton more than 30 years of private equity and consulting experience and has worked with executive management teams at mid-sized and Fortune 100 companies in a variety of industries.


McManus has extensive experience advising leaders on how to best accomplish transformation goals and strategic objectives by bridging from diligence activities to value creation. His leadership has helped create enterprise value, preserve company culture, manage risk and achieve measurable results. Further, he has worked with teams across sales and marketing, product development, engineering, legal, human resources, finance, information technology and operations.


Prior to joining Grant Thornton, McManus held leadership and client delivery roles at PwC and Alvarez & Marsal. Most recently, he served as a senior director and private equity segment executive at Point B. McManus received a bachelor’s degree in business administration from San Diego State University.


Arata joins Grant Thornton as a business development executive also within the Strategy and Transactions practice. He has more than 20 years of experience shaping and executing go-to-market and new venture strategies to build executive and board level alignment.


Arata has led cross-functional partnerships and has driven new initiatives toward innovative solutions and revenue growth. He has also worked across multiple industries, including technology, media, real estate and consumer packaged goods, among others. 


Prior to joining Grant Thornton, Arata held leadership roles at Accenture and Cushman & Wakefield. Most recently, he served as a private equity director at Point B, where he was a founding member of the Private Equity Services team tasked with developing the consulting and advisory practice tailored to private equity clients. Arata received a master’s of business administration degree from the F.W. Olin Graduate School of Business at Babson College and a bachelor’s degree from Bowdoin College.


To learn more information about Grant Thornton’s private equity offerings, visit:

About Grant Thornton LLP

Grant Thornton LLP (Grant Thornton) is one of America’s largest providers of audit and assurance, tax and advisory services — and the U.S. member firm of the Grant Thornton International Ltd global network. We go beyond the expected to make business more personal and build trust into every result. With revenues of $2.4 billion for the fiscal year that ended July 31, 2023, and almost 50 offices nationwide, Grant Thornton is a community of more than 9,000 problem solvers who value relationships and are ready to help organizations of all sizes and industries create more confident futures. Because, for us, how we serve matters as much as what we do. 


“Grant Thornton” refers to Grant Thornton LLP, the U.S. member firm of Grant Thornton International Ltd (GTIL). GTIL and the member firms are not a worldwide partnership. Services are delivered by the member firms. GTIL and its member firms are not agents of, and do not obligate, one another and are not liable for one another’s acts or omissions.




More press releases