M&A Summit 2023 Agenda - Modern Distribution Management

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M&A Summit

Uncover the blueprint for successful and lucrative M&A

February 22 & 23, 2023
10:00am – 2:00pm Eastern
Tickets include on-demand access through April 2023

Wednesday, February 22nd

10:00-10:10 AM EST

Welcome & Summit Overview

MDM CEO Tom Gale and Executive Editor Mike Hockett set the stage for our program with a brief discussion on the purpose behind our M&A Summit and what to expect. We’ll touch on the recent pace of M&A activity in wholesale distribution, including what’s happened in the first two months of this year.

Tom Gale, CEO, Modern Distribution Management (MDM)
Mike Hockett, Executive Editor, Modern Distribution Management (MDM)

10:10-10:40 AM EST

3 Cs of Human Capital in M&A: Change Management, Communication, Culture

Too often M&A can foster us-versus-them thinking, which can undermine deal success and value from the start. Three dynamics occur: Our company vs. theirs, executives vs. frontline leaders, and who stays vs. who goes. This session maps out a playbook to execute a well-planned integration with a focus on the people element – so critical to a distributor’s value proposition. Buy- or sell-side, learn how to navigate the inevitable minefields to create a great deal for all.

Keynote: Jennifer Fondrevay, Founder, Day1 Ready LLC

10:40-11:10 AM EST

Panel: Culture & Communication in M&A

Our panelists share experience in managing the challenges of integration and onboarding to create “the new future.”

Jayne Millard, Executive Chairman, Turtle & Hughes
Mike Olthoff, former CEO, Nichols Paper
: Jennifer Fondrevay, Founder, Day1 Ready LLC

11:10-11:30 AM EST

The 2023 Distribution M&A Landscape

Following a slowdown in deal volumes in late 2022, expectations for distribution M&A in 2023 remain cautious.  However, rapidly evolving secular themes related to technology, supply chains, human capital and sales models provide a meaningful counterweight to reignite activity.  Strategic buyers, growth-oriented sponsors and family offices are expected to play an outsized role in the year ahead. 

Jason Kliewer, Managing Director, Distribution Group, Baird
Rob Hamill, Director, Distribution Group, Baird

11:30 AM -12:10 PM EST

Panel: Current Market Dynamics – The Strategic Acquirer Perspective

This panel features insights from three of the most experienced and active entities that have leveraged M&A as a growth strategy within their respective sectors. Learn from their views on the guiding principles for growth, criteria for successful deals and the companies they seek to make partners, and outlook for the year ahead.

Jim Drohan, Vice President Business Development, MSC Industrial
Monte Salsman, President, Winsupply Acquisitions Group
Jeff Giles, Vice President, Corporate Development, Core & Main LP
Moderator: Tom Gale, CEO, Modern Distribution Management (MDM)

12:10-12:30 PM EST


12:30-1:00 PM EST

Strategic Due Diligence: How to Capture More Value Buy or Sell

Many view due diligence as a skeleton-in-the-closet exercise, or the assembly of a market’s core fact base – they miss the value creation and equity story mindset of this phase of a transaction, buy or sell. This session outlines how thesis-led diligence that anticipates a playbook post-close helps realize the full potential value of a business.

Joe Repp, Partner/Principal, EY-Parthenon
Scott Orleck, Partner, EY-Parthenon

1:00-1:30 PM EST

How to Position for Private Equity Interest/Investment

Distribution as an investment sector has outperformed the U.S. economy, while the number of M&A deals in the industry has doubled since 2007. So what does private equity see that they didn’t 15 years ago? This session breaks down the business characteristics that financial investors look for, and how to effectively position against them. 

Carl Gatenio, Managing Director, Investment Banking, Raymond James
Gareth Hughes, Director, Investment Banking, Raymond James

1:30-2:00 PM EST

Panel: The Art of the Successful Deal

Three deal advisors with deep experience in distribution share perspectives on the attributes and elements for defining win-win equations in the current market cycle. They’ll share insights on the critical factors buyers and sellers can focus on to ensure success.

Kevin Sargent, Managing Director, Brown Gibbons Lang & Company (BGL)
Rob Hogan, Managing Director, Shorehill Capital
Steve Cosgrove, President, Cosgrove Partners
Moderator: Mike Hockett, Executive Editor, Modern Distribution Management (MDM)

2:00-2:30 PM EST

Fireside Chat: Randy Breaux, President, Motion

A little over a year after Motion’s landmark acquisition of Kaman Distribution Group, don’t miss this update on the blockbuster deal that changed the competitive dynamics of several industrial distribution sectors.

Randy Breaux, President, Motion
Tom Gale, CEO, Modern Distribution Management (MDM)

Thursday, February 23rd

10:00-10:05 AM EST


MDM CEO Tom Gale and Executive Editor Mike Hockett outline what to expect in this second half of the 2023 M&A Summit. 

Tom Gale, CEO, Modern Distribution Management (MDM)
Mike Hockett, Executive Editor, Modern Distribution Management (MDM)

10:05-10:50 AM EST

Panel: Construction Supply’s 2023 Reset – The New M&A Market Drivers

Construction markets are shifting quickly in the current inflation-interest rate cycle. How have deal structures and value components changed from 2022, and what’s the short- and longer-term outlooks? This panel of building materials dealmakers digs into the latest trends impacting a much more volatile distribution sector in 2023.

Steve Swinney, CEO and Founder, Kodiak Building Partners
Jim Hooper, SVP of M&A, US LBM
Michael Turner, Partner, The JIAN Group
Moderator: Craig Webb, President, Webb Analytics

10:50-11:10 AM EST

Post-Post-Pandemic Considerations for Buyers & Sellers

In this Q&A format, Reed Anderson, Managing Director and Head of Houlihan Lokey’s Specialty Distribution practice, shares insights on how buyers and sellers have transitioned from initial pandemic impacts to continued market instability – supply chain, inflation, interest rates – and the impact on the consolidation landscape in 2023 and beyond.

Reed Anderson, Managing Director, Distribution, Houlihan Lokey
Mike Hockett, Executive Editor, Modern Distribution Management (MDM)

11:10-11:30 AM EST

ESOPs as an Exit Strategy

The series of uncertainties over the past three years have prompted many privately held business owners to prioritize diversifying from their family’s concentration in the business. ESOPs are being looked at more often as an attractive strategy because of: Fair Market Value, tax incentives, and opportunity to retain legacy and culture.

Speaker: Mary Josephs, CEO, Verit Advisors

11:30 AM -12:00 PM EST

Panel: Distributor Insights on ESOPs

This panel explores the pros and cons of the ESOP alternative vs. status quo (no transaction) as well as PE and Strategic strategies. Learn from the deeper perspectives of our distribution executive panelists who have navigated the ins, outs and intricacies of employee stock ownership plans. 

Robyn Pollina, CEO, Palmer-Donavin
Jeremy Welsand, CFO, Border States
Mary Josephs, CEO, Verit Advisors

12:00-12:30 PM EST


12:30-1:00 PM EST

Fireside Chat: John Wiborg, President & CEO, Stellar Industrial Supply

Stellar Industrial has developed 17 regional hubs throughout the U.S. by executing a growth strategy that includes 11 acquisitions over 15 years. We’ll explore the strategic goals, attributes and outlook that guides Wiborg’s fierce beliefs in the value proposition of independent distribution.

John Wiborg, President & CEO, Stellar Industrial Supply
Tom Gale, CEO, Modern Distribution Management (MDM)

1:00-1:20 PM EST

What’s My Business Worth? Mid-Market Valuation Fundamentals

Many distributors have unrealistic expectations for EBITDA multiples or how buyers arrive at an offer. With more than two decades advising small- to mid-size distributors, Brent Grover shares insights on valuation key factors, methodologies, equity and enterprise value calculations, and steps to take now to maximize the value of your business.

Speaker: Brent Grover, M&A Advisor, Brent Grover & Co.

1:20-2:00 PM EST

Panel: Value Creation with Buy-Build-Invest Strategies

There are many growth-strategy and value-creation models at play in distribution M&A markets. This session examines more deeply long-term, hands-on investment strategies that support value-added distributors. You’ll hear from some of the most successful operators in their respective sectors on what’s changing, what’s not and get advice for prospective sellers for the year ahead.

Jay Greyson, Managing Director, Supply Chain Equity Partners
Craig Osborne, President & CEO, SBP Holdings
John Mark, President & CEO, BlackHawk Industrial
Moderator: Mike Hockett, Executive Editor, Modern Distribution Management (MDM)


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