BigExit: Thought Leadership and Relationship Building through Education in Private Equity
This week I attended the Business Success Focused Conference “Big Exit” put together by Sagemount – Mid Market focused Private Equity firm.
It is a very well put together event providing a lot of great information sessions on all aspects of business operations and best practices for value creation. It also provided fantastic opportunities to network with other companies C-level executives to share insights. Sagemount also brought some of the best Business books authors, who were very accessible for a chat.
At Big Exit I think there was a pretty good mix of attendees on the show – Sagemount Team, Partners, Current and Past Portfolio Companies and folks like ourselves, who could be considered prospective Portfolio companies. A simple but very effective practice was to give those different folks different colors of lanyard which made it very easy to see whom you were speaking to.
Big Exit also included a number of case studies of portfolio companies, which kind of got repetitive after a while, but might be a good thing as all companies were quite consistent in the value Sagemount could provide.
At Percona we continue to be a bootstrapped company and have not taken any external capital, however if I were to be on the market Sagemount folks would surely be on the top of the list to consider.
I get number of emails from Private Equity companies every week, but most of those are quite boring to be frank – they would invite you for a chat to learn about your company and themselves, which typically includes sharing how long they have been in business, how high pedigree their partners are and how much money they have under management, which however gives very little insight into “soul” of the company.
On the contrary Sagemount, and Michael Kosty in particular were focused on building trust in providing value. I remember our first meeting probably about 5 years ago Michael shared a lot of useful and relevant for Percona tips and data points, without any hard sell (which I, as many Engineers, am rather allergic to), when I attended one of the previous Big Exit events in Las Vegas and was able to learn a lot, and now I had great opportunity to attend this event again.
I expect and hope this event is great Marketing for Sagemount but I also see it as a great gift to the ecosystem, helping Entrepreneurs to be better Entrepreneurs whenever they end up doing business with Sagemount or not. This is particularly important to me as this well aligns with the Percona approach where we see value in helping folks to run Open Source Databases better, whenever they end up becoming our customers or not.
Another great value Sagemount brings to the table is “Growth Factors Portfolio Operations Team” which is a kind of ninja focused on helping Sagemount portfolio companies with various operations challenges. Sagemount is probably not unique at helping their portfolio companies but they do fantastic job showcasing it on Big Exit event: Listening to presentations by Growth Factor folks you can learn they really know what they are talking about, talking to Portfolio Companies representative though you learn they are not overwhelming and available to help to Portfolio Companies teams rather than forcing management to do their bidding – two qualities I would definitely appreciate.
Thank you Michael for the invitation and looking forward to another event next year!