Scott A. Dahnke
Scott Dahnke is the Global co-Chief Executive Officer of L Catterton, the world’s largest consumer-focused private equity firm, with roughly $20 billion under management. The firm has 17 offices spread across 5 continents spanning nearly a dozen time zones, and invests from 7 different fund strategies. Notably, L Catterton was recently named “Global Consumer Private Equity Firm of the Year” for an unprecedented second consecutive year by Private Equity International (“PEI”), the leading industry trade publication, and “Private Equity Firm of the Year” by the M&A Advisor, M&A Atlas, Acquisition International, and The Deal.
Scott has a broad range of business experience in private equity, consulting, management, and finance. He has spent the last 22 years in private equity and has completed over 30 investments, including Peloton, Restoration Hardware, Norwegian Cruise Lines, The Honest Company, Vroom, Zarbee’s Naturals, Kettle Chips, Equinox, Wellness Pet Food, Heartland RV, Nature’s Variety, Edible Arrangements, Ferrara Candy, Rachael Ray Nutrish, Chop’t, Leslie’s Pool Supplies, generating a realized track record over 3x cash-on-cash and a gross internal rate of return over 30%. Three of the transactions that Scott has led or co-led (Restoration Hardware, Ainsworth, and Zarbee’s Naturals), have won PEI’s prestigious Award for Operational Excellence, in 2014, 2018, and 2019, respectively.
Before entering the investment arena, Scott was the CEO of Nasdaq-listed infoUSA (since taken private as “infogroup”), a leading provider of business and consumer marketing products and services. He led infoUSA to an unprecedented string of consecutive record quarters, growing the company’s market capitalization to nearly $1 billion and helping the company earn recognition as one of Forbes’ “Top 200 Small Companies in America.” Previously, Scott served consumer-focused clients on a wide array of strategic and operational matters as a Partner at McKinsey & Company. His early career also includes experience in the Merger Department of Goldman Sachs and internationally with General Motors.
Scott received a B.S., magna cum laude, in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Notre Dame. He also earned academic honors while receiving an MBA from the Harvard Business School and completed the Executive Education Program at Stanford Law School’s Directors’ College. Scott has served as a National Judge for the EY Entrepreneur of the Year award, has been quoted in numerous publications (including The Wall Street Journal, The Economist, Barron’s, and Forbes), and has lectured at Notre Dame and the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. Amongst other accolades, the National Retail Federation named Mr. Dahnke as a “Power Player” for 2017. He has recently been elected Chairman of the Board of Directors of Williams-Sonoma (NYSE:WSM) and serves on the Board of Directors of Vroom (NASDAQ:VRM). He also serves on the Advisory Council for the Student Athlete at Notre Dame and as a Trustee of Brunswick School and of the National Board of Review of Motion Pictures. He previously served in the not-for-profit arena as a board member of the American Red Cross of New York and the American Federation of Arts.