The conversation includes Richard Leonard, Managing Director of Angelo Gordon & Co., Béla Szigethy, Co-CEO of Riverside Company, and Anthony Zecca, Managing Partner of J.H. Cohn. This is the second segment of a three-part discussion series on US middle-market private equity. The first segment is called “More Than Just Capital.”
Topics discussed in “Candid Advice For Sellers” include: The importance of chemistry between the private equity firm and company management, how to evaluate important differences between potential private equity bidders, differences in available capital between firms, how to see beyond a firm’s “spiel” to “get the real story,” fees that some GPs charge their portfolio companies, nailing down an operating plan before the deal closes, how life changes post-deal, important differences between the goals of different sellers, and the delicacies of changing management teams. The program also includes an expert Q&A with Anthony Zecca of J.H. Cohn, the sponsor of this Privcap series.
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The Riverside Company
Szigethy is a Co-Chief Executive Officer and Co-Chairman of Investment Committee of The Riverside Company. He founded the firm in 1988 and is based at the New York office. Together with Mr. Stewart A. Kohl, Mr. Szigethy manages all aspects of the firm's activities. Previously, he was a Vice President in the Leveraged Acquisition and Finance Department at Citibank, N.A. for seven years. Mr. Szigethy serves as a Director of Olympic Boat Centers. He was a Director of Axiom Automotive Technologies. Mr. Szigethy has authored many articles including Articles Matchmaking Can Be Beautiful, A Hungarian from Abroad, From Snooki To LBOs, 10 Things Every LP Should Ask GPs, It is NOT the L Word, Riverside Thrives on Smaller Picking, and Small Remains Beautiful to The Riverside Company. He holds a Masters of International Affairs and International Finance from Columbia University and a B.A. in Psychology and French from Oberlin College.
Angelo, Gordon & Co.
Richard Leonard, Managing Director joined Angelo, Gordon in 2009 as a member of the firm’s private equity and special situations area. Before joining Angelo, Gordon, Richard was a Managing Director at Bruckmann, Rosser, Sherrill & Co. where he focused on leveraged buyout investments in the restaurant, retail, food and manufacturing industries.
Richard began his private equity career at J.W. Childs Associates and was also previously with Audax Group. At these firms, Richard completed leveraged buyout transactions in the restaurant, healthcare and defense electronics industries. Before working in private equity, Richard was a Financial Analyst and Associate at Dillon, Read & Company, where he focused on large cap mergers and acquisitions in the defense, aerospace, automotive, manufacturing, paper products, real estate and restaurant industries.
Richard holds an A.B. degree from Harvard University.
Anthony Zecca, CPA, is the managing partner of Cohn Consulting Group, a division of J.H. Cohn LLP, one of the country’s largest accounting and consulting firms. Cohn Consulting Group includes professionals who are experts in governance, internal audit, IT security, corporate performance, and business intelligence. Zecca has been a partner in the Firm since 1982 and serves on the Management Committee.
Zecca is an expert in working with client management teams to drive organizational performance. He has significant experience in designing and evaluating internal controls for client organizations and is an authority on regulatory compliance, particularly Sarbanes-Oxley. An expert strategist with extensive experience in a variety of industries, he works with the boards and senior management of large national and international public companies such as CA, Inc., CIT, Dunkin’ Brands, GLG Partners, Inc., Lexington Realty Trust, NorthStar Realty Finance, Phillips-Van Heusen, Scholastic Corporation, not-for-profit organizations such as the United Nations, as well as private companies and pre-IPOs.
He has lectured extensively on management topics, including strategic alignment, business ethics, top- and bottom-line growth, internal controls, corporate governance, and business/enterprise performance management. He has presented numerous training seminars for client companies and industry associations and is recognized as a superb teacher and communicator. Zecca is frequently quoted in financial industry publications including Financial Times, ComplianceWeek, Business Finance, Crain’s NY Business, Public Accounting Report, NJ Biz, US Business Review, Commerce and The Deal and is the coauthor of The Performance PowerGrid: The Proven Method to Create and Sustain Superior Organizational Performance (Wiley, 2006).
Zecca earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from Fairleigh Dickinson University, Teaneck, New Jersey. He is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the National Association of Corporate Directors. He is a certified public accountant in New Jersey and New York. Tony currently serves on the board of the Medhen Orphan Relief Effort (M.O.R.E.).
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