Economic Development and Human Resources

National M&A leader coming to Grand Rapids

Kevin Short to speak to Western Michigan chapter of the Association of Corporate Growth.

September 16, 2016
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A national leader in mergers and acquisitions is coming to Grand Rapids this week to speak to the Western Michigan chapter of the Association of Corporate Growth.

Kevin Short, the managing partner and CEO of St. Louis-based Clayton Capital Partners, will be on hand Sept. 21 for ACG Western Michigan’s September Breakfast. Short will present on the association’s chosen topic, “The Future of M&A in the Middle Market.”

“There are a lot of things going on in the market and private equity seems to be changing,” ACG Western Michigan board member Rich Noreen said. “So, we were looking at it from two different aspects — how is it changing and what could people expect in selling their company or competing in private equity? And we thought we’d be able to give perspective to buyers and advisors through this topic.”

In his career, Short has orchestrated more than 150 deals worth more than $1 billion, and he also is the author of “Sell Your Business For An Outrageous Price,” which received the 2015 Axiom Business Book Award Bronze Medal. He frequently speaks at seminars, addressing business owners and advisors alike, most recently at the BEI Annual Exit Planning Conference in Denver last month.

Short is expected to discuss the most active industries in M&A for the coming year, how the Midwest differs from the rest of the country and industry trends that could point toward what to expect in the next 18 months.

Noreen said Short’s extensive knowledge in M&A made him an appealing choice to speak to ACG Western Michigan members, adding because Short’s background is in a larger market, he can provide a broader perspective than a local M&A expert might and, hopefully, draw a wider crowd to the event.

“Kevin’s got a really impressive history,” Noreen said. “He’s got a more widespread practice and can talk to different areas.”

Additionally, Noreen said Short will pass along advice for companies that might be involved in a merger or looking to dive into the market, either as a buyer or seller.

“We want our companies to grow but also to grow sustainably,” Noreen said. “If you sell for a great dollar amount but sell to a firm that isn’t the right fit, that’s not going to be sustainable. We want to educate that there’s more than the money — either as a buyer or as a seller — when you’re in the M&A market.”

The program begins at 7:30 a.m. Sept. 21 at the Kent Country Club, 1600 College Ave. NE. ACG Western Michigan members can register to attend for free at Registration for nonmembers is $40 per person and $30 for members of another chapter of the Association for Corporate Growth.

“We want our members to come away with a good sense of feeling of where the market is heading when it comes to buying and selling, what to expect, what the competition is doing or what their strategies should be,” Noreen said. “And it’s not just the advisors or experts or business owners. This is one of those programs that will speak to all sides.”

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