William Blair has expanded its financial sponsor advisory platform with the launch of its Private Capital Advisory practice.

The new practice will offer services such as strategic advice, fund placement, direct equity capital-raising, and secondary solutions to financial sponsor clients on a global basis, the company said.

The firm has hired Mike Custar to head the practice. Custer, who will be based in New York, is joined by Quinn Kolberg and a team of secondaries experts who will be responsible for GP-led secondaries.

The Private Capital Advisory team will work alongside William Blair’s global team of 25 financial sponsor coverage and advisory professionals and more than 550 sector- and product-focused bankers.

William Blair head of Financial Sponsors Group Brandon Lower said: “The addition of Private Capital Advisory enables us to provide financial sponsors with holistic solutions tailored to their unique needs and address all stages of the private equity lifecycle.

“Mike and Quinn share our vision of being the most trusted advisor and partner to private equity firms and the management teams at their portfolio companies. We are excited to have them join our world-class team.”

Custar joins William Blair from New York-based M2O Private Fund Advisors. He was most recently head of the secondary advisory business at the firm with the responsibility to oversee secondary advisory, primary and secondary origination, and select distribution.

Before joining M2O, he worked as a managing director in the Private Funds Group at Credit Suisse.

Prior to that, Custar was a director at PricewaterhouseCoopers, where he assisted private equity GPs in evaluating acquisition targets.

Custar commented: “I’m thrilled to join William Blair. The opportunity to collaborate on and develop a full suite of private capital advisory solutions with a world-class firm like William Blair is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. I look forward to fully integrating into the firm to develop solutions that address our clients’ private capital needs.”

Kolberg also joins the firm from M2O, where he served as a principal responsible for executing GP-led secondaries.