Shaf Dewani


Over the last 25 years, Shaf has built an impressive portfolio of experience that spans consumer brands, retailing, management, entrepreneurship, international business, investment and transaction services.

He’s held executive roles in brand management at Pacific Brands, Globe International and Rip Curl, as well as investment management for Besen Private Equity. And his entrepreneurial achievements include establishing master franchises for Cacharel, Paul & Joe, Coast and Karen Millen. At the latter, he ran the 70-door, Melbourne-to-Beijing, Asia-Pacific portfolio.

All of this experience combines to make Shaf a trusted insider within the retail and luxury sectors. It also gives him a broad contact base to tap into for M&A, capital raising, partnerships and strategic planning.

Shaf is an industry go-to for his insights and thinking in fashion, luxury goods, home and design, food concepts and multichannel retailing. He wrote RMIT’s Luxury Brand Management course, and has taught both Innovation & Entrepreneurship. He also holds a BA and BComm (Monash) and an MBA (AGSM).

Shaf and his wife have three children. One of his most rewarding accomplishments was completing the 100km Oxfam Trailwalker. In addition to being Principal at Edison, Shaf is also the CSO (Chief Style Officer).

Jason Ellenport


Jason has more than two decades of experience in founding, growing and advising early-stage and fast-growth businesses— specialising in Technology, Food & Beverage and Health & Wellbeing.

His work ethic and business acumen have been a lifetime in the making. As an eight-year-old, he’d wake up at 6am on Saturdays and jump the fence to the local golf course. There he’d find lost golf balls and wash them before selling them back to the golfers on the ninth tee. When he wasn’t selling golf-balls, he was riding a morning and afternoon paper-round for pocket money.

Building on his early ventures and entrepreneurial spirit, Jason established a successful career in the technology industry. He was one of the founding team of ASX-listed Adslot Ltd (ASX:ADJ), Tradeslot and Vertical Talent, which sold to Drake International in 2008.

As a member of the five:am team, Jason played a pivotal role in establishing and growing this Australian organic yoghurt startup. He was a crucial member of the Senior Executive, and later served as an advisor to the Founder in the spectacularly successful sale to P Z Cussons in 2014.

As a business owner, Jason has demonstrated capability in strategy, planning, management and execution. On the transaction advisory side, his experience includes M&A, capital raising and advisory. He relishes working with business owners, their families and their stakeholders – bringing perspective and empathy from his own entrepreneurial experience.

Jason now channels his passion for entrepreneurship into supporting entrepreneurs through Edison. He is also a current member and sitting Board Director of the Entrepreneurs Organisation.

He holds a BA, BBus (Banking & Finance) and MBA (Melbourne & ESADE, Barcelona).

Jason is married, with one child. He loves travel, golf, the Tigers, and conspiring with his identical twin brother to confuse all and sundry.

He is also a tenured member and former Board Member of Entrepreneurs Organisation (Melbourne Chapter).

Michael Thompson

Head of Private Equity

Michael has 12 years of experience in private equity, funds management and corporate M&A advisory.

Previously, he was an Investment Director at Archer Capital, one Australia’s oldest and most successful private equity firms. Michael has also held the role of Investment Director at Livingbridge, a leading UK private equity firm with $3 billion in capital under management and a focus on expansion capital investing.

When it comes to private equity, Michael has considerable experience across all facets of the discipline. This includes deal sourcing, investment appraisal and approval, transaction execution, capital raising, investee supervision, investee exits and investor reporting.

Michael represented both Archer Capital and Livingbridge on the Board of investee companies. He also provided additional executive assistance to support growth initiatives and key projects. His investing experience spans several sectors including Health & Wellbeing, Retail & Consumer, Food & Beverage and Services.

Michael has experience as an operational executive and as a business owner. He served for six months as General Manager of Franchising at Craveable Brands – a business with 600 stores and over 200 franchisees – during Archer Capital’s ownership. Michael has a Bachelor of Laws and a Bachelor of Commerce from the University of Western Australia.

Malcolm Thornton

Investment Committee Chair (Non-Exec), Private Equity

Malcolm is a widely respected business leader with a successful track record of venture capital investing, corporate business development and startup experience. He is highly regarded as a trusted investor representative and an experienced company board director.

Malcolm spent 12 years with Starfish Ventures, a leading Australian Venture Capital fund manager with over $400M in funds raised and 60 companies invested in. Malcolm was a member of the Investment Committee for Starfish Technology Fund I and Starfish Technology Fund II, and represented the Funds on 13 investees boards.

More recently, Malcolm was the Head of Corporate Development of ANZ for Cisco. There, he was a member of the Senior Leadership Team and sat as an Investor Representative for its ANZ portfolio. Malcolm was previously a Director of the Australian Investment Council, where he served on the Venture Capital and the Research Committees.

Malcolm holds a BAppSc (QUT), MAppSc (QUT) and an MBA (Melbourne).

Simon Weller

Senior Associate

Simon holds a Bachelor of Laws and a Bachelor of Commerce from the Monash University. Simon has over 6 years of M&A experience focusing on the mid-market, including private equity, lead advisory services and specialist taxation advice.

Previously at Deloitte Australia, Simon advised numerous mid-to-large private companies and private equity clients on public and private market transactions across multiple sectors. As a lead advisor, Simon advised on a range of buy-side and sell-side mandates, preparing business materials, detailed financial models and supporting overall transaction execution. Simon also has experience providing specialist taxation advice on M&A, cross-border and domestic tax structuring, IPOs, private equity investments and complex tax advisory projects.


Nicholas Gazdowicz


Nick holds a Bachelor of Commerce from the Monash University. Nick has over 6 years M&A and Corporate Finance experience focusing on the mid to large markets, including transaction strategy and execution, lead advisory services and implementation of strategic initiatives.

Previously at Deloitte Australia, Nick advised numerous large private and public companies on market transactions across multiple sectors. Nick advised on a range of buy-side and sell-side mandates, preparing business materials, detailed financial models and providing advisory and consulting services to clients before, during and after mergers, acquisitions, carve-outs and divestments.

Hiro Shimada

Affiliate Partner – M&A Advisory

Hiro is an experienced corporate adviser with over 18 years’ experience spanning Australia, the UK and Japan. Hiro has advised corporate and private equity clients on public and private transactions across a number of industry sectors including general industrials, TMT, property, consumer, retail, healthcare and infrastructure.

Hiro is currently a Partner at Birchgrove Capital Partners, a Sydney based boutique corporate advisory firm and a strategic affiliate of Edison Partners. Prior to founding Birchgrove Capital Partners, Hiro was an Executive Director at Nomura where he led coverage of the General Industrials sector. Prior to his role at Nomura, he held senior roles in the investment banking divisions of Investec and Macquarie.

Hiro is also passionate about supporting SMEs through his role as an Approved Advisor with the Advisory Board Centre, and currently sits on two private company Advisory Boards.

Hiro holds a Bachelor of Laws and Bachelor of Commerce from the University of New South Wales.

Hiro is married with two young kids. When not in lock-down, he loves travelling with the family and loves watching his beloved Brisbane Broncos play in the NRL. An optimist at heart, he is hopeful that the Broncos will return to its former glory soon!

Tim Szonyi

Strategy & Transformation Lead

Tim brings 20+ years’ experience in executive roles and top tier management consulting across Alcohol Beverage, Food & Beverage, Grocery, Specialty Retail and Consumer Goods. He has held CEO and Commercial Marketing & Sales Director roles in blue chip global companies including Diageo, Mars and leading PE backed businesses such as Tribe Breweries.

Previously, Tim was a top-tier Management Consultant with McKinsey & Company as an Associate Partner and a leader in their Marketing/Sales and Consumer/Retail practices. He has also spent time in the USA as Regional Partner Americas for McKinney Rogers, a globally acclaimed strategy execution firm. Tim sits on various boards as a Non-Executive Director including Industry Beans, one of Australia’s largest independent and fastest growing national specialty coffee companies.

Tim holds a Graduate Diploma in HR Management and a Bachelor of Business Management from Monash University. He is married with two teenage boys who affectionately refer to him as ‘Tim the Taxi’ – an honorary responsibility which Tim explains has significantly reduced the use of his VRC membership in recent years!

William Hays


Will brings a strong analytical mindset and structured approach to problem solving, drawing great enjoyment from developing strong relationships and achieving positive outcomes for his clients.

Prior to Edison, Will spent several years within Deloitte’s M&A Consulting team, where he advised on buy and sell side mandates across the M&A lifecycle for various clients within Private Equity, Health & Wellbeing, Consumer, Financial Services, and Transport & Logistics. Will has played key roles in both pre and post deal environments, and brings diverse experiences that span from initial strategy and due diligence all the way through to execution. Will’s key areas of expertise include M&A strategy, due diligence, synergy assessment & delivery, and transaction planning, readiness and execution. Prior to his time at Deloitte, Will also held roles within Restructuring at PwC.

Will is a Qualified Chartered Accountant and graduated from the University of Melbourne with a Bachelor of Commerce.

About Edison

Business partners. Reimagined.

The Edison difference

Inspired by a visionary. Driven by a challenge. Fuelled by experience. Our team is diverse, yet united by a common set of values.

We work with founder-led businesses and high-growth organisations to help them overcome challenges, reach new heights and achieve transformational  performance improvements.

Drawing on our first-hand experience, we get straight to the issues that matter most. Our shared experience affords a unique empathy and understanding of the highs and lows of the entrepreneurial and business growth journeys.

Our values

At Edison, we live and breathe our values – both using them to guide us and actively infusing them into everything we do.


We never stop striving. We’re analytical and insightful, resourceful and inventive, balanced but decisive, energetic and diligent.


We’re professionals drawn from industry with entrepreneurial spirit at our core.


We do not take for granted the trust our clients and partners place in us. Our reputation has been heard earned – and it is trust and respect that underpins it all.


We pride ourselves on working alongside our clients from a position of knowledge. Because a well-rounded team with diverse skills enables unique perspectives and innovative solutions.


We’re optimistic about our clients because they never cease to amaze us. They’re driven, passionate, dedicated and heroic. We treat them with the respect they deserve, because we understand what they’ve been through and we believe in where they’re going.


We’re expert planners, but we understand that plans change. We pause to regroup and attack things from a different angle. Finding better, faster and smarter solutions is ingrained in who we are and what we do.

Edison team experience

Edison founded

Completed deals

>$20 billion

Transaction value

Sector Specialists 

We focus on sectors which we have first-hand experience as business owners, senior executives and advisors. This gives us both deep networks and unique insights into sector-specific market landscapes, trends and business models.

But more than this, our extensive sector experience means we start any client partnership already fully informed and up-to-speed on their sector. Our clients don’t need to waste time, energy and effort on educating us. Instead, we come to the engagement as sector veterans who understand the ins and outs, ready to get to the heart of what matters.

Our Team

Shaf Dewani

Shaf Dewani


Jason Ellenport

Jason Ellenport


Simon Weller

Nicholas Gazdowicz


Hiro Shimada

Hiro Shimada

Affiliate Partner – M&A Advisory

It’s about walking the road together

We have tremendous respect and empathy for the entrepreneurial journey. What you do every day is difficult and daring. You push boundaries, while challenging yourself and the norms of business. And whether you realise it or not, that’s pretty inspiring.

You are the reason that we started Edison. We want to apply our collective experience as successful entrepreneurs and senior business leaders to help you navigate the challenges and opportunities of entrepreneurship.

It can be a lonely road. We know, because we’ve been there before and we wear the scars of entrepreneurship proudly. We gain great fulfilment from walking the road alongside you as true partners – and delivering you safely to the finish line.