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Private Equity Funcast

The PE Funcast is a weekly show featuring Devin Mathews and Jim Milbery -- partners at ParkerGale Capital. We discuss all things related to privately-owned middle market technology companies -- the kind of great businesses that are outside the sphere of venture capital.
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Apr 4, 2024

"Value Creation" - It's one of the most over-used terms in private equity today. What does value creation mean? What's wrong with how investors talk about their value creation approach? And how does ParkerGale think about its strategy for value creation? Operating Partners Jim and Paul get real about the PG value creation playbook - and have some fun along the way - in the latest episode of the Funcast. 

Mar 8, 2024

We welcome back our friends Christoph and Peter from FLEX Capital in Berlin, Germany. Our conversation covers everything you would expect . . . how is the tech market holding up in Europe, how is deal flow, are deals getting done, are founders selling or holding on, where are valuations today compared to a few years ago, how is the fundraising market, what does competition for deals look like? We also cover the basics, such as what Christoph and Peter look for in a deal, what they will and won't do, and how that has changed over time. Here are their emails if you'd like to connect . . . pw@flex.capital and cj@flex.capital

Feb 14, 2024

Jim welcomes the CEO of Master Storytelling and former host of Planet Money, the always-entertaining Adam Davidson. We explore the importance of crafting a compelling and memorable narrative for companies to effectively communicate with various stakeholders, including investors, management teams, and customers. We take a detour to delve into the challenges of generic messaging, the significance of being distinct and memorable, and the role of storytelling in aligning and coordinating actions within a company. 

Jan 25, 2024

Jim talks Low-Code/No-Code with Jon Kragh, founder of Proactive Logic Consulting.  Jon and his team provide fractional CTO, cloud architecture, tech modernization, and process automation services.  Jon has a wealth of experience with low-code solutions and he can quote both Kierkegaard and Ray Dalio, so come have a listen.

Jan 18, 2024

Jim talks with IBM Champion and the Incredible i Show host, Peg Tuttle.  IBM's Power Systems platform running the IBM i operating system powers some of the most significant applications in the world.  Peg has 20+ years working in the IBM I world, and we talk about everything from common misconceptions to leveraging the latest and greatest open-source solutions on the IBM Power Systems platform.

Dec 18, 2023

Jim talks with Stanford's Dr. Mohammad Rasouli about AI's pending disruption in Private Equity.  He is an ex-McKinsey consultant from the Bay Area and the New York offices managing AI activation projects for private equity clients. He has worked with top-20 private equity funds and many middle and small-size PEs to use AI technology for automating their fund processes and to use AI for their portfolio companies.

Nov 29, 2023

Bill Snow, a noted authority on mergers and acquisitions, is back with the second part of our discussion on his new book, Mergers and Acquisitions for Dummies.  He joins host Jim Milbery to discuss the most common problems that sellers encounter in the deal process.

Nov 7, 2023

 Devin is joined by Tuck Hardie, a Managing Director in Houlihan Lokey’s Financial Restructuring Group. After operating through the bankruptcy at Marvel as a client of Houlihan, Tuck switched sides and joined the HL team over 20 years ago. Tuck introduces the restructuring business, how it has changed during the past two decades, lessons from the GCF (and how we are still feeling the effects), and what's happening in today's "higher for longer" environment. He provides helpful tips for investors and companies trying to avoid needing his services.

Sep 27, 2023

Bill Snow, a noted authority on mergers and acquisitions has represented buyers and sellers in a multitude of industries. He joins host Jim Milbery to discuss his new book, Mergers and Acquisitions for Dummies.   In this episode, we focus the conversation on the most common pitfalls that can derail a deal.

Sep 15, 2023

Two Hundred and Seventy Three Episodes and Two Million downloads later, it's the 10th anniversary of the PE Funcast.  Indulge your intrepid co-hosts, Devin and Jim, as we walk down memory lane.

Aug 10, 2023

This week we sat down with Clark O'Niell and Jay Barlett from BCG to discuss their most recent research report on Generative AI and its implications for PE investors and their portfolio companies.  GenAI is already becoming a game changer, with use cases emerging across all industries; Use cases range from efficiency improvements to long-term advantages (i.e., transformative use cases). And we promise you that Skynet is not listening in.

Jul 13, 2023

In this episode of the PE Funcast, we take a deep dive into the relationship between the portfolio company CEO and the private equity Partner. What do they talk about when they talk? How does their connection evolve from the interview, to building the team, to planning for an exit? What does the first year of a PE-backed CEO gig feel like? Devin and our newest portfolio CEO, Dave Lucey, cover it all here in a frank and wide-ranging conversation about Dave's first year at the helm of Biscom. We plan to do follow-ups in the years ahead as Dave and Devin take Biscom from new platform company to eventual exit.

Jun 14, 2023

We’ve been hearing more questions and interest in operating partner roles than ever before. In our latest episode of the Private Equity Funcast, Operating Partners Jim and Cici cover some of the most frequently asked questions we frequently hear about the role of Operating Partners. We cover things like why an operating team is needed, the history and evolution of Operating Partners at PE firms, and different Operating Partner models. We also discuss the relationship between Operating Partners and deal teams, how operating teams are structured within a PE firm, and some common paths to becoming an Operating Partner.
 
This episode is also available in video format on YouTube.

May 19, 2023

Ted Bililies, Managing Director and Head of Global Transformation Leadership Practice at AlixPartners joins Devin again to review the findings of the 8th Annual PE Leadership Survey. Devin and Ted discuss where PE and Portfolio Executives agree and differ on what's most important in today's turbulent times. They talk about sprinters vs. marathoners, growers vs. grinders, and peace-time vs. war-time leaders. They also cover how technology adds to the challenges of scaling companies and the crisis of middle management and how to address it.

May 4, 2023

In this episode of the PE Funcast, Devin and our Head of Research, David, discuss our research on software valuations, “What’s a Software Company Worth.” They cover how software valuations have trended over the past 20 years, the challenges that private and public investors will face over the coming year, and inject some of “what we’re seeing” inside our portfolio and the markets we play in.

Apr 20, 2023

The grand finale of our two-part conversation with Kelley Powell, a long-time ParkerGale collaborator, and ex-portfolio executive.  Kelley talks about the ins and outs of working with PE from the portfolio company perspective.  She's a wealth of knowledge about working with PE AND helping founders prepare for a PE process.

Apr 5, 2023

Part One of a two-part conversation with Kelley Powell, a long-time ParkerGale collaborator and ex-portfolio executive.  Kelley talks about the ins and outs of working with PE from the portfolio company perspective.  She's a wealth of knowledge about working with PE AND helping founders prepare for a PE process.

Mar 23, 2023

Jim spends an hour talking about technical due diligence with Dan Bender, and Lukas Ingelheim from Code & Co.  Dan and Lukas have over 250 engagements under their collective belts and have literally "seen it all."  We cover a wide range of topics, including Technical Debt versus Architectural Debt, code "smells," and the top ten things a company should have in place ahead of technical due diligence.

Feb 24, 2023

Jim talks with an old friend and comrade, Alan Williamson, about his new book - Think Like a CTO.  Alan shares hard-won lessons on how to thrive in the fast-paced role of Chief Technology Officer. We discuss the ins and outs of establishing successful technology platforms and teams, leveraging practical software selection and implementation frameworks, conducting bias-free interviews and performance reviews, and earning your place with other senior leaders. 

Jan 25, 2023

Jim talks Mergers and Acquisitions Roll-up strategies with Matt Lynch, Managing Director at District Capital Partners.  We discuss the various types of add-on acquisitions and answer the key questions.  What is an M&A roll-up strategy, and why does it matter? How does it work?  How do you get started?

Jan 4, 2023

Jimmy is joined by Katrina Calihan, Executive Coach and Co-Founder of Wind + Sail Leadership Partners, to discuss and demystify executive coaching. Jimmy and Katrina have been working together since 2019 when they launched L6, the leadership development program that has now become a staple inside ParkerGale and our portfolio businesses. On today’s show, they discuss the landscape of executive coaching and why the impact of an executive coach can be so profound by “bringing you into the room” to a coaching engagement. They also give tips for finding the right coach if you are currently on the market. Katrina even gets Jimmy to talk a little about his own experience with his coach. 

This episode is especially for the skeptics. For you all, executive coaching may very well be one of the biggest investments in yourself or in the leaders around you that you aren’t making. Listen to find out why. 

Dec 20, 2022

In this episode of the Private Equity Funcast, Operating Partner Cici Zheng is joined by Jared Ranere, President and COO of thrv, a firm that delivers services, training and a software platform using the Jobs-to-be-Done (JTBD) framework to identify and serve customers' unmet needs. We cover what the framework is and how it's used at PE backed portfolio companies, both during due diligence and post-close, how the JTBD framework potentially expands the total addressable market (TAM) of an industry we're looking at, and how the framework translates into product strategy and go-to-market execution. 

Nov 11, 2022

Jim talks with Paul Stansik about his experiences digging in on the sales and marketing function within our portfolio.

Sep 2, 2022

In the latest episode of the Private Equity Funcast, Operating Partners Cici Zheng and Paul Stansik discuss the ICP - Ideal Customer Profile. As investors, we're frequently asking our portfolio companies - who is your ICP? Which ones are your best-fit customers, the ones that your product is truly the best fit for to solve their pain points? How do we avoid trying to be the dreaded "swiss-army knife" and being everything to everybody? In this episode we discuss why defining an ICP is important to us and our 3 step process for building out an ICP. 

Aug 17, 2022

Jimmy is joined by David Cohen, Human Capital Partner at Kelso and Company. David has been working in the Human Capital / Private Equity space for over a decade and has helped shape the discipline across the PE industry. They break down the various ways that human capital can impact a portfolio business, including alignment to strategy, leadership effectiveness, talent acquisition, and org design. If there’s a word that defines today’s episode, it’s alignment. It is at the center of how both Kelso and ParkerGale think about the human capital practice. To be successful, leadership need to get dozens, hundreds, or thousands of people organized around a common purpose and strategy. If you can’t do that, not much else matters.

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