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Alex Mathews was shocked at how much custom manufacturers would pay for the software he and business partner Param Shah developed. Thus FactoryFour was born.
, Johns Hopkins Magazine
Published Fall 2018
Alex Mathews hadn’t planned on becoming an entrepreneur—especially not while still in college. But in his junior year, Mathews met Param Shah through the Hodson Trust Scholarship Program. Shah told him about the production challenges he faced with his nonprofit, the Lotus Life Foundation, which delivers medical devices to children in remote areas of India. Mathews created a software platform that enabled Lotus Life to accurately produce orthotics and prosthetics customized for individual patients, and in 2016, Mathews and Shah founded their first business, Fusiform. They soon discovered, however, that their software could also serve the custom design-and-build needs of a range of industries, which up until now have lacked viable software for managing product specifications and performance data. In 2017, they launched the manufacturing software company FactoryFour (maintaining Fusiform as a subsidiary) with support from the Baltimore venture capital fund community, quickly growing to 16 employees with a current plan to double in size within the next year.
How did your personal and educational background prepare you for launching FactoryFour?
I did a lot of computer science work in high school, so I had a head start. My freshman year, I met Jamasen Rodriguez, A&S ’15, a fellow Hodson Scholar who was a year ahead of me. Along with some other friends, we launched Jama Cocoa, which specialized in single-origin chocolate truffles. I was the chief technology officer, developing our e-commerce platform. We didn’t make a lot of money but were successful enough to be bought out by an initial investor. That really changed my preconceived notions of entrepreneurship.
Read the rest of the article at here at Johns Hopkins Magazine
Bandura, which pioneered the Threat Intelligence Gateway (TIG) industry in part with the U.S. Department of Defense, today announced it has completed a Series A round, securing $4 million in financing led by Grotech Ventures, Gula Tech Adventures, Maryland Venture Fund, and Cultivation Capital. This strategic funding will strengthen Bandura’s position as a leader in the emerging Threat Intelligence Gateway (TIG) marketplace. The Bandura TIG™ is purpose-built to filter network traffic against large volumes of threat intelligence indicators, better protecting networks from the massive volume of known threats.
“We partner with innovative cybersecurity technology companies who are bringing fresh ideas and unconventional approaches to tackle the large and growing cybersecurity challenge”
At any moment, tens of millions of known malicious IP addresses and domains are attacking organizations. These threats are dynamic and everchanging and, while there is a significant volume of actionable threat intelligence that can be used to detect and block the threats, firewalls can manage only a very limited number of threat indicators. The result is security coverage gaps, alert fatigue, staff overload, inefficient use of expensive firewall resources, and suboptimal return on existing security investments.
“Firewalls are getting crushed by the sheer volume of threats that hit organizations industry-wide every day,” said Chris Fedde, CEO of Bandura. “And, while external threat intelligence is available,most companies lack the staff and resources to effectively and efficiently operationalize it. The Bandura TIG complements the firewall, enabling companies of all sizes to use threat intelligence without limits in an easy and automated way. We are grateful for the support of our investors and believe it is a testament to our work redefining the industry’s use of threat intelligence from reactive detection and response to proactive prevention.”
Evergreen Advisors Capital is pleased to announce that it was the exclusive financial advisor to Four V Systems LLC, an SRC Company, and cybersecurity firm in connection with its sale to OPAQ Networks.
FourV Systems, located in Baltimore, MD, is dedicated to helping organizations manage business risk aligned with IT operations. risk. OPAQ Networks is the premier network security cloud company that enables partners to deliver security-as-a-service to midsize enterprise customers. OPAQ Networks’ cloud-based platform empowers organizations to simplify security management, centralize policy enforcement, and reduce costs. Based in Northern Virginia, OPAQ is privately held and is funded by Columbia Capital, Harmony Partners, and Zero-G, Inc.
Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
Rick Kohr, the founding member and Chief Executive Officer of Evergreen Advisors LLC, has been named Board Chair of the Economic Alliance of Greater Baltimore (EAGB).
“I am honored to succeed Augie Chiasera,” says Kohr. “We are participating in a fast-paced and ever-changing world which requires a new way of thinking and solving problems. Thanks to Augie and our Board Directors, we are confident in our ability to drive inclusive growth opportunities throughout Greater Baltimore.”
The EAGB is the only public-private organization convening industry, government, education and philanthropic leaders to foster inclusive economic development in Greater Baltimore. As part of its efforts, EAGB will continue to advocate for a more collaborative leadership model that will drive an effective and simplified approach for economic competitiveness across the region. [Read more…]
Location, location, location.
The high value-added services of a location strategy consultant are not reserved for large companies, in fact, middle size companies typically benefit most from the expertise of a location strategy consultant.
In addition to the physical real estate, companies rely on location strategy consultants to assist them with:
- optimization of supply chain
- cost minimalization
- tax structure
- return on investment
A quality location decision is not solely a real estate decision. Whether it is a headquarters, back office, distribution center, manufacturing, laboratory, call center, or data center facility there are many factors to consider before coming to a final location decision. The critical factors of a location project are uniquely tailored to the business needs of the company as it relates to such considerations as the company’s culture, existing network, customer base, workforce, supply chain, and facility type. Making a location decision without consideration to one or more of these critical factors can lead to misalignment between the facility and the community, unexpected costs, high cost operation, underperforming facility and network of facilities, high workforce turnover, and the inability to attract top talent.
Evergreen Advisors Capital, a middle-market investment bank, is pleased to announce that Chesapeake Medical Staffing, LLC (“Chesapeake”) has been acquired by American Surgical Professionals (“ASP”). Evergreen Advisors Capital acted as the exclusive financial advisor to Chesapeake.
Chesapeake Medical Staffing is one of the largest and most respected health care staffing agencies in the mid-Atlantic region. CMS has focused on sourcing the highest quality health care professionals from nurses to administrative personnel to physicians to complete management of the agency process. The Company is Joint Commission certified and their client list includes hospitals, institutional care providers, management services organizations (MSO), home care and individual patients
“CMS explored numerous options to enhance our future,” said Jeff McClure co-founder and CEO of CMS. “ASP’s combination of business strengths and culture were exactly in line with our intended direction.” Terri Weller, co-founder and CNO said, “We are excited to be teaming with another high quality Joint Commission certified group of established clinicians. Helping our clients by providing experienced clinical professionals in a user-friendly manner has always been my passion. This merging of talent will take us to a new level in meeting the continuum of care needs of our current and future clients.”
Joseph Bradley of Evergreen Advisors Capital noted, “This transaction represents the combination of two outstanding organizations and management teams, with common vision, passion and purpose.”
Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
Evergreen Advisors Capital is pleased to announce the publication of our 2018 Cybersecurity Market Update. The update provides industry and insights on notable transactions, a detailed look at M&A and private placement activity, and data on valuation metrics and stock price performance.
2018 has the makings for a strong year for venture capital
With a robust M&A market, liquidity in the public capital markets, corporate cash, and continuing earnings growth in many sectors, the next two years should turn in strong performance for Venture Capital. As 2017 closes, capital invested is over $44 Billion, up almost 18% from the $37 Billion invested in 2016. For the Mid-Atlantic Region, even though the area saw 1,266 deals funded year to date in 2017 down from the 1,367 deals funded in 2016, total capital invested to date in 2017 reached $9 billion which exceeds the $8.9 billion invested in 2016.
For our region, one of the highlights in 2017 was the opening of AllegisCyber, an affiliate of Allegis Capital, a Silicon Valley venture capital firm that is collocated with DataTribe in Maple Lawn, Maryland. DataTribe applies an investment element to its model, by providing seed financing of up to $1.5 million to its cohort companies. Both firms are expanding their investments into Maryland cyber companies in the coming year.
Two of the most active regional (D.C., Maryland, & Virginia) investors in Cyber overall in 2017 were NEA with 9 cyber investments including local company Zerofox and Blu Ventures who invested in local deals including ID.me, Trackoff, Huntress Labs, NS8, Bandura Systems, DarkCubed, Fischer Block, GroupSense, PFP Cybersecurity, PacketSled, and Cybrary. Gula Tech Adventures also made a number of investments in 2017 working with the next generation of cyber security start-ups assisting with their product roadmaps, participating in their capital raises and helping them build their companies. [Read more…]
Evergreen Advisors announced today that Shelley Lombardo, Chief Operating Officer of Evergreen Advisors, has completed the professional development program dedicated to building a better Maryland by harnessing the strength of its local business and community leaders. Leadership Maryland honored Lombardo, a resident of Ellicott City, and the entire Class of 2017 at its 25th annual graduation ceremony held December 5 at the Lord Baltimore Hotel.
Lombardo was one of 52 applicants chosen by committee to complete Leadership Maryland’s eight-month hands-on learning program focused on the state’s most vital social, economic and environmental issues.
“It was an honor to be a part of the Class of 2017. The program is a powerful vehicle to explore Maryland’s challenges and opportunities from healthcare, education, economic development, to the environment with a diverse group of Maryland’s best and the brightest executives.” Remarked Shelley Lombardo. [Read more…]
On September 27, 2017, the Republican led congress in conjunction with the White House released its long-awaited framework (the Framework) outlining the current legislative effort on comprehensive tax reform. Although many significant details have yet to be defined, major provisions such as a lower corporate tax rate for both C corporations and pass-through entities (S corporations, LLC’s and partnerships) will have a significant impact on the cash flow capacity and valuation of these entities.
According to the Framework, the top marginal tax rate for C corps could be reduced significantly from 35% to 20%. The pass-through entity tax rate (S corporations, LLC’s and partnerships) would be reduced to 25%, with some restrictions. Currently, income generated by such entities are taxed at the individual shareholder’s personal tax rate. If voted into law, the Trump Administration’s version of tax reform will likely have a significant impact in the following key areas: [Read more…]
Cyber security is a constantly evolving subject matter for businesses. Like the computer viruses that are generally associated with the term, the issue itself has proven infectious for corporations both in its reach and impact as it grows over time.
Many organizations have learned the hard way that it is also a very costly subject matter. A study produced by IBM and the Ponemon Institute suggests that the average cost of fixing or resolving a data breach in 2015 was more than $3.75 million. That number is only expected to grow.
The Effects of Cyber Security Attacks
The increasing level of connectivity has served as perhaps the predominate economic theme of the past quarter century. It has also created substantial new risk to the security of sensitive information. Moore’s Law of Computing states that overall processing power for computers will double every two years. Newton’s third law of motion states that for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. Combine the two theories together and you have a pretty good explanation of the future impact of cyber security on businesses. [Read more…]
Economic Alliance of Greater Baltimore is holding their 2017 Annual Meeting on December 12, 2017. The meeting will be held at M&T Bank Stadium from 4:30-8pm.
EAGB’s Annual Meeting is a celebration of the events and people that make the region a world-class place to live, work, learn and invest.
As they celebrate their 20th Anniversary, they will be taking a look back at the success and growth that the region has experienced over the last two decades, while also featuring Greater Baltimore’s future as a global leader. As we celebrate the results of longstanding partnerships that have led to Baltimore’s economic success, we look forward to celebrating the visionaries and leaders who will shape our tomorrow.
Join Evergreen and the EAGB by purchasing your tickets now.
Evergreen Advisors Capital is pleased to announce the publication of our Q3 2017 Healthcare Market Update. The update provides quarterly overviews for each sector within the healthcare services industry and insights on notable transactions, a detailed look at M&A and private placement activity, and data on valuation metrics and stock price performance.
Print or Download Report Here:
Amazon set off a buzz around the country last week with their announcement of placing a second headquarters somewhere in North America. Cities across the U.S. are strategizing on how to come together to meet the request for proposal regarding Amazon’s required critical location factors.
Location is one of the most important decisions a company makes. While made infrequently, location selection has an impact on fixed and variable costs, including taxes, transportation, utilities and labor. Once in place, it is difficult to change. When choosing the optimal location for a facility, a company must consider key factors, such as supply chain, logistics, compatibility of the local labor force, political landscape, tax structure and real estate. In Amazon’s case, for example, they have requested land near an international airport, major highways, and a public transit system, in a metro area with at least one million people and a stable business environment. It might, therefore, be the case that they have decided to settle for a new location somewhere like Los Angeles. For instance, it is relatively easy to find trucking companies in los angeles that would be more than happy to take on the logistics side of running the business.
While there are many more factors a company needs to consider in addition to the ones listed, these considerations are some of the most commonly overlooked. To complicate the matter further, each type of facility has a different list of requirements and prioritization of key factors. Finally, and most importantly, the decision-makers must consider the business’s unique mix of equipment, infrastructure, processes, procedures, and especially people – the most critical element in making a business successful. Navigating the highly customized and complex landscape of location strategy is crucial to a company’s short- and long-term success.
There are many situations when companies should consider utilizing location strategy services. Other events, besides a move or addition of a new facility (like Amazon), where location strategy can add value to the company are: [Read more…]
Evergreen Advisors, a boutique middle market Investment Bank and Corporate Advisory Firm, with offices in both Columbia, MD and Tysons Corner, VA, servicing organizations throughout their financial lifecycles to drive successful outcomes, is pleased to announce the addition of Vicki Horton and a new service, Location Strategies. Evergreen’s Location Strategies will be a part of the larger practice group, Corporate Advisory.
Columbia, MD – Evergreen Advisors, a boutique middle market Investment Bank and Corporate Advisory Firm, with offices in both Columbia, MD and Tysons Corner, VA, servicing organizations throughout their financial lifecycles to drive successful outcomes, is pleased to announce the addition of Patrick Lowry and Patuxent Valuation Group (PVG). PVG has decades of experience producing well-documented, comprehensive valuations for a variety of purposes including, but not limited to, business ownership transitions, mergers and/or acquisitions, Employee Stock Ownership Plans (ESOPs), estate and gift tax planning, shareholder disputes, divorce and business litigation.
TEDCO, Maryland’s lead source for entrepreneurial business assistance and seed funding for the development of startup companies in Maryland’s innovation economy, has appointed a new CEO. George Davis was announced as CEO yesterday.
Rick Kohr, CEO of Evergreen Advisors has been active with TEDCO over the years. He commented on TEDCO’s new hire: “This is the right time for George to become TEDCO’s CEO. They’ve selected an incredibly solid leader at a period when TEDCO is in a very strong position. George is a great match, and he will be able to leverage the rich history of TEDCO with his extensive and successful experience as a serial entrepreneur, C-level executive and knowledgeable investor.”
In this Entrepreneur Spotlight we have put our focus on ELEVI Associates, an Information Technology company supporting customers throughout the US in both Federal as well as Commercial Enterprise markets. The company is comprised of three business units: IT Professional Services, IT Staffing Solutions, and Technology Systems & Support. ELEVI was founded in 2002 and is based in Columbia, MD. We took a few moments to interview Phil Puccio, CEO of ELEVI, to ask some questions and learn more about his company.
- Tell us a little bit about ELEVI and how you first got started? [Read more…]
Evergreen Advisors’, Rick Kohr, will be Startup Grind’s “fireside chat” guest on June 26th. Rick will explore the basics of M&A and will be sharing his experiences, successes, failures, and lessons learned as a founder, CEO and Board Advisor for dozens of early stage growth and middle market companies. He will focus on the problems, opportunities, and mistakes he sees startups make today and will give recommendations for how to avoid them.
Rick Kohr has over 30 years of experience in advising early stage growth and middle-market companies on finance, recapitalization and exit strategies. These financing alternatives and exit strategies include capital raises, recapitalizations, mergers, sales and ESOPs. Rick was also a co-founder and managing member of the Chesapeake Emerging Opportunities Club, an early stage venture capital fund.
Evergreen Advisors, a leading Investment Bank and Corporate Advisory Firm, is pleased to announce that it has launched a new Corporate Advisory Practice that combines our CFO Advisory, Business Valuation, Corporate Finance, and Strategy Units.
The combined team will provide a multi-disciplinary approach to servicing clients throughout their financial lifecycle and add a range of consulting services to our portfolio. Services in the group include: Strategic CFO Advisory, Accounting and Controller Services, Business Valuation Services, Strategic Planning, and Corporate Finance. Evergreen Advisors has previously been known to offer three categories of services: Investment Banking Services, CFO Advisory Services, and Business Valuation Services. The new Corporate Advisory Practice will allow us to provide a broad range of specialized services to our clients as their needs change. Joe Bradley will head up the Corporate Advisory Practice.
In this Entrepreneur Spotlight we have put our focus on Trivalent, a leading provider of next generation data protection based in Annapolis, MD. We love to interview clients and other local entrepreneurs to make others aware of what is going on in the local business community. We took a few moments to interview Trivalent, to ask some questions and learn more about this fast-growing company.
1. Tell us a little bit about Trivalent. How you first got started and how you have grown since inception in 2010.
EY’s Entrepreneur of the Year has been celebrating entrepreneurs for over 30 years and has been recognized as one of the most prestigious business award programs in the world. Entrepreneur of the Year celebrates those who are building and leading successful, growing and dynamic businesses, recognizing them through regional, national and global awards programs in more than 145 cities in more than 60 countries. EY’s Entrepreneur of the Year program runs from April to June, where the independent judges review participant applications, conduct interviews, select categories and winners, and award those winners on June 28th, during a gala at the conclusion of the program.
Other 2017 Maryland judges include:
Rick Kohr had the pleasure of sitting down with both Tom and Gary to discuss the recently formed Momentum Fund, geared towards increasing new company creation and commercialization of research in Maryland. The Fund will concentrate on filling funding gaps and provide opportunities for innovation.
RK: The first thing I always like to ask is “How would you describe the problem that exists today that you are trying to solve?” It will help us to understand why the Momentum Fund was created.
GA: First of all thanks for the opportunity, and I’m honored to be on this call. When I started working on the Board of Regents about 8 years ago, I sat in on a committee meeting with our tech transfer work group. It was chaired by a young guy named Mike Gill. It was obvious to Mike, who really got this process rolling, and to me, that there was tremendous brain power in the University System…
Evergreen Advisors announces the promotion of both Justin Horsman and Will O’Donnell to Manager in our Business Valuation Practice.
Justin Horsman joined Evergreen in 2013 and brings to Evergreen experience in valuation advisory services for a variety of purposes, including estate and gift tax, IRC 409A, dissenting shareholder and oppression, Subchapter-S elections, buy/sell agreements, and fair value reporting. He is a CFA Level 3 Candidate, a member of the American Society of Appraisers, and has passed the four principles of valuation prerequisites. Justin holds his Series 63, Uniform Securities Agent State license, and Series 79, Investment Banking Representative license.
What can March Madness teach us about business, you ask? As March Madness quickly approaches, we can’t help but think about who are our teams, the concepts of dedication and hard work, and what it means to aim to be great.
Here at Evergreen, we celebrate March Madness with intensity and high spirits. But how does the game of basketball and March Madness itself relate to our everyday business and individual lives?
Do you exemplify the characteristics of a great individual and an even better team player?
- Teamwork: The great thing about a team is that several unique individuals come together to join as ONE – bringing all of their different talents and skills for one common purpose. To win & to succeed. Take a look at your team – is everyone striving towards the same goal? There is no stronger team than a team who is comprised of people who work for the same outcome and who aim for greatness.
- Leadership: The best teams have excellent leaders, and not just in management. A great team can learn from a great coaching staff, but individuals who exemplify leadership can take the team even further in their successes. Who are the members on your team and are you exemplifying leadership qualities to advance your team’s success?
- Commitment: You may have raw talent, but you must be committed to working hard and exercising your skills repetitively to ensure you stay active and perform well. Train to win. Learn new skills, gain new knowledge, apply those talents, and work towards success. Hard work and dedication pay off, not only in basketball, but in everyday business endeavors.
- Attitude: It is important to have a good attitude and to reflect good character in your team. If you have a poor attitude or display unsportsmanlike qualities, you will bring fault to your character. If one team member has poor character, it will affect the image of your business as a whole and the clients you wish to attract.
Most of all have fun! It’s much better when you love what you do and have fun doing it!
Who’s your team and how are you contributing during this March Madness season?
Evergreen Advisors, LLC Chief Operating Officer and Ellicott City resident one of 52 selected for professional development program
Leadership Maryland announced this week that Shelley Lombardo, MBA ’17, Chief Operating Officer at Evergreen Advisors, LLC, has been chosen to participate in the professional development program dedicated to building a better Maryland by harnessing the strength of its local business and community leaders. Lombardo is one of 52 individuals chosen for Leadership Maryland’s 25th class – the Class of 2017, who will complete the eight-month hands-on learning program focused on the state’s most vital social, economic and environmental issues.
Following a two-day opening retreat in April, the class will attend five two-day intense sessions traversing the state focusing on Maryland’s economic development, education, health and human services, criminal justice, the environment, and multi-culturalism/diversity. These sessions will be followed by a one-day closing retreat in November and a graduation celebration in December. More than 100 experts representing business, government, education, and the non-profit community will serve as panelists and guest speakers.
Join Evergreen Advisors and thousands of other industry professionals at the RSA Conference 2017 in San Francisco, California. The conference will be held at the Moscone Center and will take place February 13 – February 17.
Top information security professionals and business leaders will discuss emerging cybersecurity trends and formulate best strategies for tackling current and future threats. At this year’s event, attendees will have access to more than 500 exhibitors, more than 400 expert-led sessions, and invaluable networking opportunities to learn more about new approaches to info security discover the latest technology and interact with top security leaders and pioneers.
Some of the local Companies and Organizations attending include:
- ADG Creative
- Atlantic Data Forensics
- Bandura Systems
- Booz Allen Hamilton
- Cisco Systems Security Business Group
- Connected2Tech LLC
Evergreen Advisors Capital is pleased to announce that it was the exclusive financial advisor to Advantage Engineers, LLC, an industrial consulting engineering firm, in connection with its recapitalization.
Advantage Engineers, LLC provides innovative solutions for complex telecommunications, environmental, and geotechnical engineering and consulting challenges. Advantage Engineers was founded in 2001 and is based in Mechanicsburg, PA with additional full-service offices in West Chester, Pittsburgh, and Allentown, PA; Denver, CO; Columbia, MD; and Mt. Laurel, NJ.
Ed Balsavage, CEO of Advantage Engineers commented, “Evergreen was instrumental in helping us find the right private equity partner while maximizing value.”
Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
Evergreen Advisors Capital is pleased to announce that it was the exclusive financial advisor to Tidal Basin Group of Alexandria, VA, a national consulting firm specializing in supporting state and local governments and nonprofit organizations with pre- and post-disaster recovery programs.
Tidal Basin Group is divided into three firms: Government Consulting, Federal, and Commercial Services. These firms have provided technical support and expertise in over 100 federally declared disasters throughout the United States. Tidal Basin is headquartered in Alexandria, VA with additional offices in Winchester, VA, New Orleans, LA, Frisco, TX, and Orlando, FL. Evergreen Advisors was the exclusive financial advisor in the acquisition of Tidal Basin by Adjusters International, Inc., based out of Utica, New York.
Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
Evergreen Advisors is pleased to announce the formation of our Metropolitan Washington, DC Advisory Board. The Advisory Board is composed of successful entrepreneurs with extensive experience across a variety of industries. The Advisory Board consists of the following members:
- Rick Rudman, CEO, Tracx
- Todd Leto, CEO, Trapollo
- Kay Parry, SVP, Square 1 Bank
- Chris Bergstrom, Digital Health Expert, Boston Consulting Group
Evergreen Advisors also has an Advisory Board for our Metropolitan Baltimore office. To learn more about the members of this board, please visit https://evergreenadvisorsllc.com/about/board-of-advisors/