Bigger is Better – But Not “Too Big”

We have been consistently advising PR Agencies to grow their top line for maximizing value, as long as they maintain bottom line consistency, targeting 20+ percent. But there is a footnote to this advice. Being “too big” may actually decrease the payback. The sweet spot for PR firms has been the $10-$25 million net revenue…
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Strategic Planning Process Three Basic Steps

It is impossible to provide an all-encompassing example of how a firm should approach strategic planning. Ultimately, company executives need to reconcile the planning framework and their firm’s individual culture to make an effective plan that fits their situation.  Here are the three basic steps to get you started: Step one. Assess where you are…
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Strategic Planning for a Successful M&A Transaction

In M&A, planning is required to ensure developing the most successful, valuable business possible. Although it is common for small- to medium-sized firms to overlook this function—especially those in PR and other creative services—I encourage you to avoid falling into this trap. Strategic planning involves conceptual, long-term, broad-based thinking. It is an attempt to define…
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Making Financial Repairs before You Sell

PR firms must repair financial issues before presenting the agencies to prospective buyers. Presentation becomes a major concern for a seller anticipating close inspection from prospective buyers. And it’s only natural to try to display your best face when you’ve decided to cash in your most valuable asset. How do you prepare when that asset…
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Building Your Firm’s Value “The Right Way”

There is a right way to build a firm’s value. There is a formal process that works. The hardest step for most firms is the first and most critical one: shifting the owner’s mind-set to manage the firm as if it were to be sold tomorrow to an outside buyer. This mind-set shift is critical….
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THE VALUE OF HUMAN CAPITAL

The term “Human Capital” is offensive to some. They see it as treating people as material objects. I hope to build a greater appreciation that the character, competence and commitment of a firm’s professional talent has a major impact on its valuation in an M&A situation.  That acknowledgement, together with other recommendations, are intended to…
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Padilla Acquisition by Avenir Global

                  Montreal/Toronto-based holding and management company Avenir Global- (parent company of NATIONAL) has acquired Padilla. We are delighted & honored to share that we introduced & facilitated the merging of two great firms. Rick Gould, Managing Partner said, “We worked closely with Avenir Global (then NATIONAL) in…
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CooperKatz Acquisition by G&S (Formerly Gibbs & Soell)

Gould+Partners managing partner, Rick Gould, advised CooperKatz in the PR firm’s sale to G&S, which combines two of the most established NYC based firms. CooperKatz, headed by Ralph Katz and Anne Green, is one of the premier NYC firms. Rick Gould said “I have known Ralph Katz and Anne Green for many years and was…
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2017 PR INDUSTRY GROWTH 4.8% FOR SECOND YEAR IN A ROW, DOWN FROM 6.6% IN 2015 AND 7.8% IN 2014

The U.S. PR industry grew by just 4.8%, according to a survey released on July 26 by Gould+Partners. The results of this survey were not consistent with the results of the annual Best Practices Benchmarking report released in June, showing that Operating Profit increased from 15.2% to 18.0%. Based on stats from 237 North American PR agencies,…
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Getting Your PR Firm “Sale Ready”, Even Before You’re Ready to Sell

We frequently tell our clients that they should manage their firm as if they’re getting ready to sell, even when a sale is not in their short-term plans. A well-managed firm shows revenue growth and strong profitability, thereby increasing purchase value. Obviously, these are the key elements in determining purchase price. A well-run firm is…
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Counselors Academy Spring Conference in Toronto- Diversity, Inclusion & M&A

I’ve been a guest speaker at the Counselor Academy spring conferences for many years, and this year’s gathering was no exception. The 2018 Counselors Academy Spring Conference, which took place May 6 through May 8 in Toronto, Canada, was a perfect forum for PR firm owners and C-suite executives. This year I was happy to be…
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Gould+Partners Names Jack Bergen Strategic Partner

NEW YORK, NY, March 1, 2018– Gould+Partners is pleased to announce that PR veteran Jack Bergen has been named Strategic Partner of the M&A/management consulting firm. Bergen, who has experience at both the corporate and agency levels, will provide a variety of services catering to creative service agency owners and C-level executives. “I look forward…
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