and looking for more
Spanning a variety of industries, our founders and management-owners have a few things in common: they’ve all built something special, have a successful track record, and are eager to take their business to the next level.
Fresh Consulting: A Stand-Up Partnership in Collaboration and Growth
Fresh Consulting is a homemade company—literally—as founder and CEO Jeff Dance started it in his grandmother’s basement. His goal was to create a consulting firm that capitalized upon shifting paradigms of workplace collaboration and connectivity to align new technologies with people. Over time, this has allowed Fresh to be at the forefront of technology shifts through their award-winning work with over 400 clients, from startups to Fortune 100 companies.
As Fresh expanded, Jeff sought out a strategic minority investor who could support the company’s growth and acquisition plans. Additionally, Jeff and some of his founding team were looking to take some chips off the table, something they had not done previously.
Jeff was introduced to Cynosure by a mentor, who had known Cynosure’s co-founder and Managing Director, Bud Scruggs, for years. Cynosure was intrigued by the opportunity for Fresh to move forward with their unique capabilities in both hardware and software development. We also recognized a pattern of success in other, larger peers to Fresh where Cynosure principals had experienced investment success.
It wasn’t long before we established a strong, trusting relationship. We hold weekly stand-ups that focus on evaluating strategic initiatives in a fully collaborative method, sharing ideas and achieving long-term growth targets.
Dirty Dogs: Keeping Core Values While Expanding Organically
Dirty Dogs, an operator of express car washes in the Southeastern United States, aimed to become industry leaders by having a laser-focus on customer service and philanthropy in every community they serve.
President and CEO Martin Emmett was seeking an investor relationship that would be exceptionally supportive without imposing new difficulties. He hoped to find a partnership in the truest sense of the word, to help Dirty Dogs clean up in its field without losing the scent of its core mission and purpose.
At Cynosure, we saw the value in Martin’s focus on a single brand with community ties, rather than multiple brands that make it challenging for an organization to maintain a cohesive message. This approach builds customer awareness and loyalty, which are especially important at a scale where the margins between good and great can be razor thin.
Martin was pleased at how collaborative every conversation became with Cynosure, and was excited to roll 100% of his equity into crafting a pipeline of new locations. His focus on building new sites organically by planning out 24-36 months in advance—as opposed to the industry-wide focus on mergers and acquisitions—made us big believers in his high-growth business.
Visible Supply Chain: A Partnership of Collaboration, Trust, and Seizing a Market Opportunity
Visible Supply Chain, a B2C fulfillment and parcel solutions company, wanted to distinguish themselves from the competition by incorporating their market insights into software that would allow e-commerce to ship better.
But, as Casey Adams (President) says, they needed an investment partner that could help strategically, support M&A, and provide the two main owners with partial liquidity. The combination of all three had the ability to take Visible to the next level.
We at Cynosure recognized that Visible was trying to accelerate in a space with massive tailwinds. Not only was it an opportunity to support the institutionalization process and be a strategic contributor for growth, but there was also a meaningful opportunity to support M&A and the eventual exit process.
We found Casey and the Visible team to be creative, likable, smart, and relentless in their desire to win, which made them an ideal investment candidate for us. Fortunately, the feeling was mutual. As Casey says, with Cynosure, “the trust and respect are very high.”
The teams set up informal Friday-evening calls to discuss the business in a low-key setting that proved ideal for brainstorming, problem-solving, and collaboration. These calls, and the fact they took place on Friday evenings, highlighted the mutual enjoyment of the relationship between Cynosure and Visible.