Participate in interactive workshops that engage and inspire you.

Tuesday, November 10

11:43 a.m. – 12:43 p.m. EST

Panelists discuss deals they wanted to buy – and believed were good companies – until something happened in the process that told them otherwise. Learn what other M&A advisors/business owners did or said that completely shut down the possibility of putting a deal together and the mistakes that blow up deals.

Moderated by Greg Carpenter, Managing Partner, M&A Business Advisors

Greg has represented buyers and sellers of lower middle market businesses for over 30 years as an intermediary. He specializes in manufacturing, distribution, and service businesses, and has completed transactions with private equity, public, large non-profit and private company buyers and sellers including Textron, RPM, US Concrete, and Underwriters Laboratories. Greg is a 20-year member of the M&A Source and was awarded Fellow status in 2017.


Ben Mackay, Evolve Capital Ltd.

Ben Mackay is the founder of Long Trail Holdings and is a partner of Evolve Capital Ltd., a Dallas-based private equity firm that focuses on acquisitions of lower middle market companies. For 13 years, Ben has leveraged buyouts of companies in the $1M to $5MM EBITDA range.

Before the LBO world, Ben worked as a collateral asset examiner for Wells Fargo Business Credit focusing on loans of $25 million and smaller. Ben also founded and served as the Chief Operating Officer of the Rosebud Group, a real estate investment fund focused on mixed-use commercial properties in emerging western recreational towns.

Mr. Mackay founded and served as the COO of the Rosebud Group, a real estate investment fund focused on mixed-use commercial properties in emerging western recreational towns.

Conner Harris, Director, LFM Capital

Conner is a director at LFM Capital and focuses on transaction review and execution as well as portfolio company strategy, monitoring, and support. He brings more than nine years of private equity, banking, and investment management experience where he was involved in more than 20 transactions. Prior to LFM, Conner was a vice president at the Riverside Company, working out of the firm’s Dallas office. While at Riverside, Conner served on multiple boards, led execution efforts for potential investments across multiple industries, and worked with portfolio companies to develop and execute strategic growth plans.

Reg Greiner, Managing Partner, Thornblade Capital

Reg Greiner founded Thornblade Capital in 2012. Prior, he was on Wall Street, most recently with the UBS Strategic Investment Group (SIG), focused on providing limited fund partnership investment, strategic equity investment, and leveraged buyouts directly off the balance sheet of UBS. His diverse transaction record is north of $3 billion in value. Over his career, he has also established three markets that previously didn’t exist within the Financial Service industry.

Carrie DiLauro, Director, Operations & Marketing, Hamilton Robinson Capital Partners

Carrie DiLauro joined HRCP in 2009 and oversees all operations management, administrative functions, investor relations, and marketing initiatives. She brings over 20 years of experience in organizational processes, data-driven system improvements, fiscal responsibility, and global manufacturing. Prior to joining HRCP, she was a fund administrator at a bio-tech hedge fund. She began her career running production for textile manufacturing facilities around the world. Carrie received a B.S. from Cornell University and a Master of Liberal Arts, Finance from the Extension School at Harvard University.

12:53 p.m. – 1:57 p.m. EST

What is the goal of getting the buyer and seller together? Learn from several experienced buyers of what can make or break that meeting. Some questions that will be covered: Do you need to do a slide deck or just open Q & A? How long should the meeting be? Should it include lunch or dinner? What are some examples of where this meeting convinced you that you needed to acquire the company? What are some examples where you thought it was a great company but in the meeting were completely turned off? What questions should we prep our sellers to answer?

Moderator: Kyle Madden, Partner, KLH Capital

Kyle is a Partner with KLH Capital and is primarily responsible for identifying, structuring, and executing transactions, due diligence, and portfolio management. He serves on the Board of Directors for BMI Merchandise. Prior to joining the private equity group in 2009, he was involved in a variety of brokerage-related capacities within the wealth management and insurance industry. An active member of the M&A industry, he has served on the Board of Directors of the M&A Source, was the 2013 chair of the Alliance of Merger & Acquisition Advisors (AM&AA), and is asked to speak regularly at industry-related events and conferences.


Cameron Coley, Principal, Plexus Capital

Cameron joined Plexus in 2015 and his primary focus is business development. He began his career at ATR, LLC, an operating company, where his responsibilities covered all sides of the firm. Following business school, Cameron worked in the corporate development group of INVISTA, a Koch Industries platform.

Erik Maurer, Principal, Prospect Partners

Erik Maurer is a principal of Prospect Partners. He is a veteran lower middle market investor with more than 20 years of experience investing in small companies across a broad range of niche manufacturing, distribution, and specialty service markets. Mr. Maurer is involved in all aspects of investment sourcing, execution, and management. He serves as chair of many of the firm’s current portfolio companies including Bland Landscaping Company, Inc., Cyclonaire Holding Corporation, Landmark Irrigation Holding Services, Inc., and Wedgewood Hospitality Group, Inc.

Charles Cox, Director, LongueVue Capital

Charles Cox, director of investments, leads LongueVue Capital’s business development activities, including the sourcing, evaluation, and execution of new platform investments and add-on opportunities for existing portfolio companies. An active member of the private equity industry, Charles serves on the Board of Directors of the Southeastern SBIA and Louisiana ACG organizations.

Wednesday, November 11

10:15 a.m. – 11:20 a.m. EST

Learn about the profiles of the various typical capital providers who will be your buyer in our M&A world of lower middle market acquisitions.

The analysis will compare private equity funds, family offices, independent or fundless sponsors, and search funds. This workshop will be presented by Joel Pokorney and Dan Wingard, partners in Forrest Lane Capital (a traditional family office), based on their firsthand experiences in the marketplace. This is a must-attend workshop for all M&A advisors who want to understand how to better qualify their buyers

Moderator: Gary Rogers, CBI, M&AMI, Owner & Partner, Kingsley Group

Gary brings over 25 years of corporate manufacturing experience in a wide variety of senior-level executive management positions for three major U.S. corporations, including division president for an NYSE company. In addition, Gary has been an active owner in Kingsley Group Business Brokers for over 25 years, providing strategic planning and transition support for business acquisitions and divestitures. He holds a degree in Industrial Engineering from Purdue University and an MBA from the University of Iowa.


Joel Pokorney CFA, Co-Founder and Managing Partner, Forest Lane Capital

Joel handles day-to-day sourcing, evaluating, executing, and managing Forest Lane’s investments, and has extensive experience working with and investing in lower middle market, family-owned businesses. His prior experience includes five years with Tecum Capital Partners (control equity family office / SBIC fund), and six years with PNC in the Corporate Banking and Asset-Backed Securities divisions where he focused on delivering financial solutions to corporate clients.

Dan Wingard – Co-Founder and Managing Partner, Forest Lane Capital

Dan handles day-to-day sourcing, evaluating, executing, and managing Forest Lane’s investments, and has more than ten years of experience working with and investing in lower middle market, family-owned businesses. His prior experience includes six years with Superior Capital Partners (control buyout PE firm), three years with Tecum Capital (control equity family office / SBIC fund), and three years with Stout Advisory (investment banking).

11:30 a.m. – 12:40 p.m. EST

Learn from experts how you can significantly increase your chances of successfully closing a deal while also shortening the time it takes to sell and increasing the value you will get for your client.

Q of E Report: A quality of earnings report before going to market can reveal any skeletons in the financial closet of your client. Addressing them before going to market will allow you to firm up all adjustments to EBITDA and working capital, giving you more confidence in the numbers and reduces the chance for surprises, which will not only lessen the chance of a late-stage “haircut” to your clients’ value and your success fee but drive more value in the final purchase price. Learn what is in a QofE, what your role as an M&A advisor is in this process, and how to position this with your client.

HR Landmines: Learn from an HR expert who has been a key part of due diligence teams brought in by both private companies and PE firms from around the country. She will discuss what are the landmines that could blow up your deal. She will also talk about what would increase or decrease the value of the company from her point of view. Learn the right questions to ask and where to look to make sure you have a profitable company before you go to market.

Financial Advisor: Hear from a financial advisor who works with clients nationwide. In this session, uncover the right questions to ask a financial advisor, and how your client can be sure that their ideal lifestyle post-sale is achievable.

Moderator: Scott Bushkie, CBI, M&AMI, Managing Partner & Founder, Cornerstone Business Services, Inc.

Scott Bushkie is the founder and president of Cornerstone Business Services. With more than 20 years in the M&A industry, Scott is a recognized leader in the field, providing exit strategies, sell- and buy-side transitions, along with valuation services in the lower middle market. Over the years, Scott has successfully executed hundreds of transactions, domestically and internationally, working with private equity firms, family offices, and strategic buyers, both public and private. Scott has the trust and respect of CPA and financial advisor alliances, investment banks, and other professional service firms around the M&A marketplace.


Q of E | Tim Maynard, Partner, Transaction Services, Cohen & Co.

Tim has over 15 years of experience serving public and private clients, with more than 10 of those years dedicated to mergers and acquisitions. He has consulted extensively with clients on acquisition-related due diligence, divestitures, carve-outs, closing documents, and structuring of purchase price adjustment mechanisms. Tim’s background includes working primarily with clients in the industrial manufacturing, specialty chemical, distribution, consumer and industrial tires, consumer products, and business service sectors.

HR Landmines | Amy N. Letke, SPHR, GPHR, Founder and CEO, Integrity HR

Amy Letke is a workforce visionary and founder and CEO of Integrity HR, a human resource outsourcing and consulting firm located in Louisville, KY. Integrity HR specializes in conducting HR risk and effectiveness assessments at a pre-deal level – helping uncover potentially costly HR issues, as well as services for “fixing” risks, at a project or ongoing level.

Financial Advisor | Michael Carignan, Financial Planning Consultant, HK Financial Services

Mike Carignan is a financial planning consultant for HK Financial Services (HKFS). In collaboration with a client’s CPA, Mike provides integrated planning and investment strategies for growing and protecting clients’ wealth. He designs personalized wealth management solutions by integrating estate planning, risk management, and retirement planning based on each client’s unique objectives and priorities.

All workshops are included in your conference registration.

Attendee Registration
Exhibitor Registration