The Illusion of a Competitive Advantage
Aug 1, 2019 | By Mike Dannenberg
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Zachary Scott provided great counsel as we navigated a complicated process to find the right partner for our business. Their preliminary diligence effort helped to anticipate and answer the market's questions, as well as prepare us for the intense due diligence effort that was yet to come. They ran a competitive process that provided us with a number of compelling alternatives. They negotiated to the final days to ensure we got the best deal we could. And finally, they were patient partners willing to answer questions or talk through issues at any hour. We greatly appreciated their help.
James Naughton, President, TSL
As an entrepreneurial organization with a global footprint, we knew the sale of our manufacturing business would present unique challenges. The Zachary Scott team was well prepared to lead us through preparing divisions in seven countries and across five languages for the intense diligence and scrutiny that was to follow. The preparation work was particularly valuable, as the eventual acquirer was a public company with extensive due diligence requirements. Further, the competitive process Zachary Scott organized presented us with multiple options, which significantly enhanced our negotiating position. In addition to their leadership, Zachary Scott brought intense dedication and commitment to all aspects of our effort, and perhaps most importantly, infinite patience. In the end, we achieved an outstanding outcome for all the stakeholders.
Scott Howell CEO, NII FPG
Our business was growing very rapidly in the western United States, and we believed that there was a potential to successfully create a national business with the right partner and backing. To help us achieve that vision, we interviewed a number of investment banking firms and found Zachary Scott to be differentiated from other firms due to their long and successful track record, and their wealth of experience in the building products industry. Zachary Scott quickly understood our business and was able to articulate its value proposition to potential business combination partners, negotiate a complex transaction, and efficiently managed the process through closing. I would highly recommend them to others.
Peter Pental, President, Pental Granite & Marble, Inc.
Zachary Scott has been a trusted advisor to the Odom Corporation for 20 years. During that time period, they have assisted us with strategy, senior debt and mezzanine financing, acquisitions, divestitures, joint ventures, shareholder buy-outs, management compensation and evaluating/sourcing senior management. They have played a critical role in our success, and we view them as a partner. I highly recommend Zachary Scott.
John Odom, CEO & Owner, Odom Corporation
When I met the Zachary Scott team, I was a very minority owner of a small regional packaging company. We ended up having a great journey together as they helped me buy the company from the existing owners, finance the acquisition and major expansion plan, enter into a joint venture with an Australian global packaging company, and eventually sell the business. The Zachary Scott team performed at every stage. My partners and I thought of them as part of our team as their goals were our goals. I view their assistance and guidance as a major contribution to our success.
Jim Ball, former CEO & Co-Owner, Cello Bag Company
I have worked closely with Zachary Scott over the past six years on a series of transactions that have been critical to the growth and success of Engs Commercial Finance. Our relationship culminated with a comprehensive $200 million equity and debt recapitalization to provide long-term growth capital to build a nationwide network. Zachary Scott's ability to dig into the business, lead us through the challenges of a complex deal, and maintain a clear focus on our objectives, sets them apart from other advisors. I view them as an awesome partner to our business.
John Engs , CEO & Owner, Engs Commercial Finance
When we decided to consider a sale of Cleanscapes, we considered investment banking firms across the country and struggled with the decision, eventually choosing Zachary Scott based on the weight of advice from people we respected. In retrospect, we couldn't have made a better choice and understand now why the firm is held in such high regard.
Chris Martin, CEO, Cleanscapes
After twenty years of building a national expanded polystyrene business, it became time to obtain liquidity for my partners. Zachary Scott had followed our business for many years, offering thoughts about the business and the timing of an eventual sale. Although we considered several national firms, we chose Zachary Scott for its knowledge and hands-on service. Our business was sold in four transactions, three of which were managed by Zachary Scott. The attention they gave each transaction from start to finish allowed us to realize the benefits of much hard work. I would highly recommend them to others.
Michael "Mick" Wall, former CEO and Co-Owner, Premier Industries
When I started the process of the sale of my business, I didn't fully appreciate all that was involved. The team at Zachary Scott dug into the depths of my business and developed an unexpected level of understanding that proved crucial in the sales process. Their level of professionalism and focus on achieving our objectives drove a very complex transaction to the finish line. Bottom line, if I was going to do this again, I would hire them in a heartbeat.
Jim Coles, former CEO & Co-Owner, Western Peterbilt
Thank you, Mark, for the initial conversations and impression that led us to trust and engage Zachary Scott. Everything in our dealings with Zachary Scott lived up to the high standards that you portrayed. I am deeply grateful to you Bill, for your patience and handling of our negotiation. I learned many significant things about the art of negotiation from you and, damn, we just plain had fun. Thank you, Jay, for the tireless heavy lifting, endless explanations, and support that you gave us in forming up our presentation and keeping us on track. As a result of your efforts, we looked awfully good, for which we are very grateful. I feel a deep sense of satisfaction about what we accomplished.
Dr. Nordeen Larsen, Sea-Bird Electronics
When co-owner Dugie Freeman and I decided it was time to consider a sale of Freeman Marine Equipment, Inc., we hired Zachary Scott to help us run a comprehensive and competitive process. Dugie and I always knew Freeman Marine was a special company. In selecting an advisor, we sought a firm that could help us articulate those special attributes to prospective buyers in order to maximize the value that we, and our talented employees, built over 35 years.
In addition to quickly understanding the economics of our business, Zachary Scott grasped our unique position in the marine enclosure industry and articulated our vision and business opportunities to prospective buyers.
Zachary Scott's diligent preparation created an expeditious and confidential process that enabled us to select among multiple qualified suitors. The Zachary Scott team offered their judgment and recommendations throughout the project, allowing Dugie and I to make informed decisions. Even after selecting our preferred buyer, Advanced Marine Technologies, Zachary Scott counseled us and led negotiations until all of the terms and conditions were finalized and we were ready to consummate the sale.
Bo Shindler, former President & Co-Owner, Freeman Marine Equipment, Inc.
We have worked with several individuals at Zachary Scott on a variety of engagements ranging from debt and equity investments to due diligence and advisory engagements. Without exception, we have found Zachary Scott to be very responsive and professional. What sets them apart from other firms with whom we have worked is their candor in openly sharing their reasoned opinions. The team at Zachary Scott takes very seriously the engagements for which they are hired, and they do not simply provide the advice that the client wants to hear.
Stanley McCammon, President & CEO, Joshua Green Corporation
We always knew that selling to a close competitor who could achieve extensive synergies with a business combination would be challenging. The strategy that Zachary Scott designed and managed allowed Service Paper Company to close a deal that shared the upside without compromising our competitive position during the process. The analysis was extremely quantitative and exacting and we could not have achieved our objectives without your constant support and attention to detail.
Leonard Green, President, Service Paper Company
The management team at Little Red Services, Inc. ("LRS" or the "Company") has worked closely with Zachary Scott over the past five years. The relationship began with a Zachary Scott led effort to successfully structure and finance the acquisition of the Company from its founder, thereby creating an opportunity for LRS management and employees to become significant owners of the business. Most recently, Zachary Scott managed the effort to reset the company's financing arrangements. The results exceeded all expectations by retiring expensive junior acquisition capital, extending maturities, and arranging an exceptionally flexible credit structure. We have a close relationship with the Zachary Scott team and look to them as a partner for advice and assistance as we continue to build our business.
Doug Smith, President & CEO, Little Red Services
My firm, Working Solutions, provided wellness related benefits to large corporate customers throughout North America. When a large, national, healthcare provider approached me to consider a sale, I agreed to pull together a team to assist in serious discussions of the matter. After considering a number of investment banking firms, we decided on Zachary Scott based on the breadth and depth of their experience and the positive recommendations of knowledgeable mergers and acquisitions attorneys. The discussions, which involved a number of interested parties, were very complex. Zachary Scott proved to be a great partner, providing candid opinions, in-depth analysis, and outstanding service. They went out of their way to understand our business environment and market challenges, and consistently and repeatedly went the extra mile on our behalf. They remained highly involved throughout the process, bringing the transaction to a successful conclusion. I might add that the experience proved to be interesting, informative and fun.
Leslie Faught, former Owner, Working Solutions
Although we already knew the small universe of companies that had been active in consolidating the electrical distribution industry, we selected Zachary Scott to assist us to prepare to approach those companies and conduct a competitive process. The time that Zachary Scott invested to intimately understand our business proved to be of significant benefit in negotiating the details of the sale and managing the buyer's due diligence process. I couldn't have been more pleased with the outcome.
Cliff Kelly, President, Stoneway Electric Supply Company
We have known the Zachary Scott team for more than 20 years, but this was our first opportunity for them to represent us on a transaction. Zachary Scott's analytical focus and disciplined process resulted in a fantastic transaction for all involved. We were impressed with their willingness to dig deep into Frontier's business in order to clearly convey the Company's value to prospective acquirers and to manage a well-run and smooth due diligence process. We look forward to the next opportunity to work with Zachary Scott.
Brad Creswell, Co-Founder, Northwest Capital Appreciation, Inc.
Don and I had never been through a transaction of this magnitude and knew that we needed the assistance of experts. We interviewed a number of investment banking firms and found Zachary Scott to be a refreshing change from other firms we interviewed. Zachary Scott was a quick study, thoroughly understanding the economics of our business and able to articulate the value proposition to PCC as was proven by the results Zachary Scott achieved for us. Zachary Scott was invaluable in helping us to prepare for sale, anticipating what would be required by the buyer to close and guiding and directing the due diligence process. I would highly recommend Zachary Scott to others considering a sale, even if they think they already know who the likely buyers are.
Scott Rowe, Co-Owner, Protective Coatings
Mark Working and the team at Zachary Scott orchestrated the sale of my business in late 2007. It was a tumultuous time in the economy and financial markets, but they made the whole thing happen. Financial modeling and quantitative analysis, managing lawyers and attorneys, keeping me rational and focused, and negotiating with the eventual buyer were all parts of their role. Bottom line is that the deal would not have happened without Zachary Scott-- not to mention the 20% premium I believe they captured. I give an unequivocable A+!
Stuart Engs, Owner, Truck Parts and Equipment Company
Working with Zachary Scott was a great experience. Michael, Jay, and Mark provided the management team with a great deal of comfort throughout the entire process. From our initial meetings, we found that the Zachary Scott team was going to really know our business. That was evidenced by the substantial effort creating the memorandum, coaching us through our management presentations, and managing the intensive due diligence effort. Their insight on our new partner was valuable. We are grateful for their help.
Rod Meussner, President, Frontier Packaging
After making the decision to put our family seafood processing business up for sale, I searched for the best firm to represent us. Zachary Scott had the experience in the seafood industry and provided the right mix of contacts, personnel and a defined game plan with a realistic timeline to accomplish our objective. It was not an easy process and grew in complexity which demanded creative solutions with the eventual buyer. Zachary Scott helped me separate the emotional from the more important economic aspects of the deal and helped massage both sides in the final negotiations to a successful completion. In hindsight, I made the correct decision in choosing Zachary Scott and I would highly recommend them to others.
Greg Blakely, former CEO & Owner, Snopac Products
Zachary Scott has been a crucial strategic partner for Warehouse Demo Services (WDS) and its owners for over eight years. Over these years Zachary Scott has advised WDS on multiple M&A opportunities, always putting the interests of WDS and its owners above its own self interest. This strategic, long-term perspective ultimately led to the acquisition of WDS by the ideal strategic buyer. Bill Hanneman, Doug Cooper, and the rest of the team at Zachary Scott were critical to achieving this winning outcome. Their investment banking experience, analytical horsepower, and negotiating expertise were continually called upon throughout the transaction, and we are immensely grateful to have had them at our side.
Ted Koehn, former CEO and Shareholder, Warehouse Demo Services
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