Private Equity Blog

Operating Partners: Creating Value and Driving Organic Growth

Posted by Slade Kobran

Operating Partners have a tough job! 

  • Many firms are still trying to figure out their Operating Partner strategy
  • They don’t always have input into the deal parameters yet are called-upon to see that the Value Creation Plan fulfill the investment thesis
  • They don’t always have a full seat at the table with the deal partners and may not reap the same type of rewards
  • They are often in the position of working with management teams who are skeptical of their input and not always quick to accept help
  • They are often spread thin across multiple portfolio companies with limited resources

These dynamics were on full display at two events I attended recently – The PEI Operating Partners Forum and ACG’s M&A East.  While Operating Partners were in abundance at the first event, the second was dominated by deal professionals and board advisors.  Surprisingly, much of the messaging was very similar.

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Evaluating Board Guidance vs. C-Suite Leadership

Posted by Slade Kobran

The difference between a marketing executive working inside the business and on the board

A standard part of the private equity playbook is to find seasoned executives to fill seats on the boards of their portfolio companies.  Increasingly that includes someone with a strong marketing pedigree who can provide advice, guidance and support to both the management team and the board on an ongoing basis.  But this approach may not be enough for many mid-market firms, especially in an environment where acquisition prices are on the rise, exit multiples are shrinking, and the pressure mounts from LPs to deliver outsized returns.

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The Tailor-made CMO

Posted by Slade Kobran

Not every portfolio company requires a Chief Marking Officer. But, according to Chief Outsiders’ Slade Kobran, in the right situation, CMOs can make a real difference with a clear mandate and specific metrics. 

lot of businesses can flourish for years without a formal marketing strategy. Plenty of hardscrabble entrepreneurs find the right door to knock on, and even the right message, for the moment. But eventually, as business grows, they may hit a snag. That’s often the time that private equity firms step in to offer their capital and expertise. And given that growth is key to generating returns these days, a company’s marketing becomes a crucial element.

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