Industrial Executives Forum: Managing a Business in Transition

April 12, 2013

Many privately-owned businesses in the industrial sector will at some time be required to transition ownership. According to a business assessment published by the New York Times, the more ownership prepares, the more successful the outcome is likely to be when a company is sold. Today, business valuations are down, credit markets remain tight and even some of the strongest businesses have shown some signs of volatility.

Regardless of the economic climate, proactive planning is essential to extracting value from a company while preserving the assets and the wellbeing of existing employees. As business owners approach retirement age, prepare for new challenges, encounter health concerns and other scenarios, simply waiting until the marketplace improves is not viable. To be successful, ownership must think creatively about the future, plan according and perhaps explore untraditional approaches.

During the Industrial Executives Forum, scheduled for 8:30-11 am, on Thursday, April 18th, a panel of business leaders will discuss different approaches to selling, exiting or transitioning a business. Strategies to be addressed will include obtaining outside investment, employee stock ownership plans (ESOPs) and employee buyouts. According to Bill Harris, Vice President of IMOCO, “Our goal with this panel is to create dialogue and encourage business leaders to think proactively. Selling a business, no matter the approach, takes resourcefulness. In many cases the process can span months and even years to implement.”  To make plans to attend the Forum, please RSVP to Josh Hallingse at [email protected] or 828-692-6373. 

Panel Members Include:

Fred Martin, Mast General Store
Mr. Martin represents The Mast General Store, a NC-based retail operation with 9 stores located throughout the Carolinas and Knoxville, TN. Mast was established in 1883 in Valle Crucis, NC. The business has grown to become a leader in the retail industry and has established a thoughtful approach to community involvement. Formerly a family-owned business, The Mast General Store now operates as an ESOP.

Anna Mills, The Van Winkle Law Firm
Attorney with the Van Winkle Law Firm with extensive business law expertise. Mills specializes in legal counsel for start-ups and small businesses. She has assisted clients through legal issues inherent in selling or buying small and mid-sized businesses. She has also served as counsel for both companies and lenders.

David Reeves, Business Consultant
Mr. Reeves has served in numerous roles within the private sector. His career began as an investment banker with E.F. Hutton & Co. Mr. Reeves has also owned and operated his own small businesses which have included Cason Companies and the Daniels Group.

Scott Sonnone, Cane Creek Cycling Components
Scott Sonnone, serves as the CEO of Cane Creek Cycling Components located in Fletcher, NC. Cane Creek Cycling is an employee-owned business and among the world’s largest producers of bicycle headsets. The company has a long, rich history in the evolution of bicycle suspension technologies.

This year’s program is brought to attendees at no cost thanks to support from HCPED Patron Members: Asheville Savings Bank, Blue Ridge Community College, Cooper Construction Company, Duke Energy, First Citizens Bank, Hunter Automotive Group, PSNC Energy and the Van Winkle Law Firm as well as Supporting Sponsor: Carolina Specialties Construction.