Joel Maes
Associate Partner


People profiles

Joel Maes



Professional Background

  • Joel is a seasoned business executive with 15+ year international commercial experience in senior management roles within a range of B2B & B2C environments of the Oil & Gas industry covering sales, distribution, and operations.
  • Joel has accumulated more then 10-year experience in leading major cross-border/cross-business M&A transactions from origination to implementation. He successfully led a number of change and turn around initiatives both in acquisition & divestment context.
  • He is passionate about creating shareholder value through leading people in cross-functional teams and beyond organisational & cultural boundaries. He appreciates the challenge & reward that comes from helping others in achieving success within a demanding business environment.
  • Joel completed a Master degree in Electro-mechanical Engineering from the KU Leuven (Belgium). And complemented his education with trainings at IMD Lausanne, Duke University and Harvard Business School.
  • He is fluent in English, French and Dutch and has basic knowledge of German.

Skills & Expertise

  • Joel has been in charge of businesses in more than 20 different countries primarily Europe & Africa. Where he assumed P&L accountability for operations with net proceeds in the range of $150mln to $300mln, EBITDA in the range of $10mln to $25mln and staffing up-to 365 FTE’s.
  • Joel has lead M&A projects or work streams with a headline figure in excess of $100mln. Led cross business/functional project teams, internal and external transaction service providers through all stages of the M&A process.
  • He developed options for deal structuring and managed due diligence processes based on appropriate deal related risk assessments. Led deal negotiations and subsequent implementation and integration.
  • As part of integration projects, he steered restructuring and turnarounds projects which involved (re-)designing & delivering a combination of rigorous cost reduction initiatives, revisiting supply chain structures & related operating models as well as supporting modernization (through IT/automation) of business processes and applying 6-Sigma as a supporting methodology.
  • Joel has led staff councils and worked closely with Trade Unions through restructuring and divestments processes.
  • Joel chaired and held board-member (director) positions in companies, subsidiaries and Joint Ventures in Eastern Europe and which involved working with State-Oil companies.

Project Highlights

  • Joel acquired his first M&A experience at Shell as project lead for the acquisition of the Elf-Aquitaine business in the Benelux. During the implementation, which he led and within the next 12 months, a new acquisition opportunity came along and had to be managed. Subsequent a successful negotiation he was appointed overall Integration Manager. ( 1995/1997 )

Subsequent projects he has worked on, include amongst others:

  • The divestment of 9 European B2B operating units which required carve-outs from the remaining local operating units. ( 2006/2007 )
  • A cross upstream/downstream investment project in North Africa which involved partnering with Middle East NOC’s. ( 2008 )
  • The divestment of a refinery shareholding in Eastern Europe. ( 2008/2009 )
  • The acquisition of the fuel stations of a German supermarket chain. ( 2010 )
  • The restructuring of an Austrian fuel depot portfolio ( 2010 ).
  • The divestment of 14 country operations in Africa with a headline figure of 1+ $bln. Joel led the cross functional Brand team, led the negotiation for the applicable TMLA’s and TSA’s and subsequent implementation of brand management for the newly created joint-ventures. ( 2011/2012 )
  • As part of a major upstream/downstream asset swap with ROC’s, Joel led the restructuring (via dilution) of German JV refinery positions. ( 2012/2013 )
  • As managing director and deal-lead, Joel delivered upon the exit strategy of one of the shareholders in a 50/50 Joint-Venture. ( 2013/2014 )

A little more about Joel

Joel is passionate about Europe’s diversity, intrigued by the changing global economic & political order, concerned about inertia in general but hopeful how arts & technology are sketching a new direction.


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