In 2004, Alex Kasdan founded his business, Convergence Capital Partners. His firm, based in Los Angeles, California, has grown over the years and now has a strong track record in helping middle market companies
We asked Alex to tell us more about his company and share some entrepreneurial advice.
Alex, tell us about your current business. What are you doing exactly?
We provide transactional advisory services to companies and business owners. We help them with divestitures, sales, acquisitions and financings.
What were you doing before this, and is this your first business?
This is my first business. I spent my prior life as a corporate lawyer and an investment banker in New York, Moscow, Russia and Los Angeles.
Where did you get the startup money to form Convergence Capital Partners?
We are completely self-funded. We were able to start the company without having to raise capital from external sources.
Who are your main competitors? How do you compete against them?
Our primary competition is other boutique advisory firms and the larger advisory firms. I compete based on the strength of my resume and the many referral relationships that I have built over the years.
How has your experience in running the business been different from what you expected?
It's hard work to start, run and grow a business. At the end of the day, I am responsible for making things happen. I cannot delegate anything to anybody. If I don't get it done, it doesn't get done. If I'm not generating business, there's no paycheck at the end of the week either. When you start a business, you expect this to be the case, but it is something that I think many entrepreneurs underestimate.
Is there anything you wish you had done differently?
I wish I had started my company sooner.
What have you done that has been very effective in helping to grow the business?
You have to have a compelling story and business proposition. "Build it and they will come" – that statement is true if you offer great value and great service to your customers.
At the same time, it's important to market your company very aggressively. We have implemented a public relations campaign to raise awareness of our firm. We also have created a good website and strong marketing materials.
What advice would you give to somebody else who wanted to start a financial advisory business?
You've got to have staying power. Depending solely on yourself can be a little scary at times, but if you persevere, you will do just fine.
That's great advice, Alex. Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us, and we wish you all the best as you build and grow Convergence Capital Partners. For those of you who are owners of middle market companies contemplating complex financial transactions, you may want to give Convergence Capital Partners a call.