The Cornerstone International Alliance is the world’s only global alliance focused exclusively on the lower middle market.
We have vetted and combined resources of some of the best independent M&A firms globally to deliver more experience, industry expertise and overall value to lower middle market businesses owners.
What are the chances that one of the few M&A firms in your city or town is the absolute best team for the job? We enable business owners to look beyond regional resource limits and truly work with the best of the best.
BTS is a founding member of the Cornerstone International Alliance. We are part of an elite group of professional firms around the country focused on quality service to owners of businesses within the lower mid-market. The alliance is a platform to share best practices and connection to advisors with diverse experience and depth of knowledge. This relationship enables us to tap the experience and knowledge of others in the field. John Howe, Director
“When I started in the industry over 19 years ago, I noticed that very few firms actually talked to each other or would share best practices other than a conference or two a year. Like several of the members of CIA, I wanted to take a leadership position in the industry to help educate and elevate the M&A community. I served as chairman of the International Business Brokers Association, as a board member for M&A Source, and founded the Wisconsin chapter of Midwest Business Broker & Intermediary Association. But still I thought we could do more. By collaborating with a smaller group of proven firms that connect on a regular basis, we could provide the very best results for each and every client.
Concurrently I saw a big issue with business owners considering the sale of their businesses. Most business owners really “didn’t know what they didn’t know” or how to tell if an M&A firm was quality or just talked a good game in an effort to get a large retainer with little chance of a successful sale. After all, they were most likely only going to choose an M&A advisor once in their life.
Little did they know how significant the consequences of choosing the wrong M&A firm would be. It could mean the difference between successfully selling their business, extending their legacy and living out their dreams or shutting it down and liquidating the physical assets for cents on the dollar, while watching their legacy evaporate after years of sacrifices and all their employees now out of work.
With the founding of CIA, we have engineered much of the risk out of the business sale process. Now, our clients can rest assured that they have the best team, strategies and resources available to them by accessing our aggregated, well vetted pool of M&A specialists – our success rate and experience speak for themselves!”
"The entire process went smoothly and professionally. The BTS team kept me fully informed at every step. They worked hard and were effective in bringing the deal home."
"Skip and I continue to be grateful for all you have done to make the sale of Pure Flow come to fruition."
"BTS’s level of expertise in the process and close attention to detail enabled us to successfully navigate the deal."
"These types of transactions are often long and complicated and I doubt it could have been successfully completed without your close ongoing involvement."
"The outside objective point of view that you have brought us has been invaluable as we prepare for the rapid growth."
"John then found the right buyer and coordinated a seamless transition—he doesn’t miss a single detail."
"John immediately identified our strengths and experiences and discussed a business that ultimately was more in line with our goals."
"The BTS team came in, evaluated everything in a professional and thankfully non-threatening manner."
Key Insights from Sale of Globe Manufacturing
Excellent program Tuesday broke down details about the sale of Globe Manufacturing, a 4th generation family owned business based in New Hampshire.
A Better Option to the Unsolicited Offer
The call came out of the blue. It was a group interested in buying the business. They needed information. Your company was a perfect fit. Just send us some details and we will be in touch.
M&A Advisor Tip - How to Answer Questions
As you start the sale process, you may be holding offsite meetings and fielding confidential phone calls. Even a subtle shift in activity can cause savvy employees to wonder, ‘What's up?’.
What’s the Best Option for my Business?
Business owners have a wide variety of options open to them. A group of business owners joined us at our fall master class that focused on transition options and the experience.
M&A Advisor Tip - When You Can't Fix Customer Concentration Issues
As a general rule, no one customer should account for more than 20-25% of your company revenue.
Transition to Freedom explores business transition experiences
Hats off to MJ Schoer for sharing his fascinating multi-level business transition story to a well attended meeting jointly presented by Business Transition Strategies and mPower Advisors.
Four buyers, three values, one winner
Businesses we sell typically go to market without a preset asking price. Why? Value is really in the eye of the buyer. And that can vary widely, depending on who they are and what they have in mind.
Strategies for growth or time to sell?
Has your business gotten to the point where it could grow but you’re not certain about taking the risk?
Timing is Everything-Capitalize on Opportunies
Timing and value are both important An old proverb comes to mind this time of year. “Make hay while the sun shines.” Take advantage of clear weather. Capitalize on opportunities. Avoid the rain.
M&A Trend Impacts Smaller Companies Too
Lower mid-market company sales are often influenced by larger M&A deal flow. A recent article on the Forbes website illustrates this point. Here’s why.
Precision Machining Company
Initially, liquidation was a serious consideration. It would offer a quick exit but would hurt loyal employees and disrupt the customers who had come to rely on its quality production.
Green Product Company
Our client owners could dig in for the long haul…However, this would take five years or more. Owners simply lacked the horsepower to do it.
Water Purification Company and Young Buyers
Owners decided they wanted to retire. They also wanted to be fair to the staff who had been loyal to them. Could the company be sold, the staff retained and the facility remain in use?
Magnetics Company with High Profile Customers
(T)he manufacturer would need to focus on growing EBITDA to capture interest from major strategic buyers and achieve a higher multiple of earnings.