The First Step Starts With Us

We can help you decide what’s next for you. And your company.

Leave A Legacy

SELLING YOUR BUSINESS

Selling your business isn’t easy. We know how hard you’ve worked, how much of your life you’ve invested in it. Now you’re thinking about options and what’s next. There’s excitement, stress and maybe even some guilt. We get it. We can help. It starts with a relationship built on trust, integrity and experience.

Make An Impact

JOIN OUR TEAM

Running a business is challenging. If you’ve always wanted to lead a company, why not earn the opportunity to lead one of ours? We’re always looking for dedicated, passionate people who believe they have what it takes.

What Our People Say

There was so much trust and confidence in dealing with Chenmark. Selling to them was the right decision for me.

Booth Hemingway / / Founder, Piscataqua Landscaping

Rarely in business do you get an opportunity to have such an impact with each and every project.

Dave Schwetz / / Director of Technology and Innovation, Chenmark

For any owner who’s looking to sell but wants to keep their dream alive while ensuring the well-being of their staff, talk to Chenmark.

Bruce Glaicar / / CEO, OK Frozen Dough

Chenmark is a family business and we were a family business, so for us it was a great fit.

Steve Lawton / / CEO, Sitescapes

Weekly Thoughts

That C-Corp Life

We are often asked why we chose to set up Chenmark Holdings as a C-corp, rather than a more traditional investment fund.  We are not tax or legal professionals, and our experience is not necessarily applicable to others but rather a reflection of our unique path, so talk to your advisors before making any decisions.

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Mack vs. Clowney 2.0

Our regular readers know the Chenmark team are fans of professional football.  This week, when catching up on some “reading”, we came across an article about Khalil Mack’s insane strength, which reminded us of an article we wrote back in 2016 about the two highest-drafted defensive players from the 2014 NFL draft, Jadeveon Clowney and Khalil Mack, and what their starkly different paths to the NFL might say about their success in it.

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Baby Shark

Like many readers, we spent a good amount of time this week closely tracking pivotal news cycles and just had to chime in with our thoughts.  Yes, we are talking about Pinkfong’s “Baby Shark” becoming the most-watched video ever on YouTube, racking in 7.043 billion views (that’s billion with a “B”, folks).

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How to Negotiate

Over the past couple of weeks, some of our team members have been working their way through an online negotiation course.  Much of the content has been both useful and interesting, one of the most relevant topics has been the emphasis placed on differentiation vs. commoditization for any company involved in a negotiation.

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Cave Diving

We learned recently about the phenomenal Jill Heinerth, a cave diver who has some serious nerves of steel.  At the age of 55, Heinerth leads technical dives into areas no living person has ever gone, facing considerable danger in the process (for example, she led the first dive into an iceberg which self-imploded minutes after her team got back to the boat). 

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Partners

Second-year MBA students graduate in late Spring, and as some of that group embark upon a search for a small business acquisition, we tend to observe a consistent seasonal uptick in advice requests around that time.  We often get asked for our opinion on working with a partner, and lately, we have noticed a trend towards “solo” searchers in place of search fund partnerships

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Careers as Asset Classes

We recently read a LinkedIn post from Scott Galloway, Professor of Marketing at NYU Stern School of Business, who opined “careers are asset classes – don’t go where it’s over-invested…. if a sector becomes overinvested with human capital, the returns on those efforts are suppressed.”

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What We Learned About Capital Allocation at the Canucks Game

We recently decided to pay down a large chunk of debt at one of our portfolio companies ahead of its scheduled amortization.  The company in question had a fantastic 2017 and generated significant excess free cash, which put us in the welcome position of having to determine the most prudent allocation of that capital.  Our options in this regard were relatively straightforward

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Words Matter 2.0

This week, we, like everybody else in the US, have been reading about the passing of Ruth Bader Ginsberg.  Don’t worry, we aren’t going to jump into the foray of Supreme Court nominations.  We will, however, outline a great RBG story from WNYC’s More Perfect podcast series.  From a talk RGB gave about her 1970’s strategy to provide women legal protections against discrimination:  

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Gross Profit

At Chenmark, we live and die by our Free Cash Flow numbers.  Free Cash Flow is a no BS way of knowing how we’re doing; it tells us how much cash we have in the bank after operating our business and meeting all of our financial obligations. On a day to day basis however, we actually speak much more frequently about gross profitability and work with all our companies to make sure we understand it at a customer and service line level.

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