Maximizing the Value of Your Business
November 18, 2019
By Shakir Simon
In the spirit of sharing knowledge, this year’s EisnerAmper Florida Business Summit proved to be a great opportunity to hear from CEOs from some of the fastest-growing companies in South Florida. An afternoon at the Perez Art Museum set the stage for a well-anticipated discussion among our very own Lisë Stewart, Principal-in-Charge of the Center for Family Business Excellence at EisnerAmper; Max Antonio Burger, co-founder and CEO of Veza Sur Brewing Co.; Gary Atkinson, CEO of The Singing Machine Co. Inc.; and Tom Wallace, Managing Partner of Florida Funders.
When asked what has helped Veza Sur Brewing Co. become so successful, Max shared some key insights that led to the creation of an innovative brewery institute in the hip, urban space of Wynwood. “We saw an opportunity to do something good,” Max explained. At the core of any strong company there has to be a pursuit of passion and opportunity. That means that CEOs have to become real strategists who are on the ground. For Max, this meant that he and his team conducted actual surveys of ordinary people to find out who the ideal customer of Veza Sur Brewing Co. would be. The company reveals its ideal customer to be a “fusionista,” a well-rounded and professional millennial with diverse roots. Having discovered this multi-dimensional identity, the co-founders of Veza Sur Brewing Co. have designed a tap room with brewing and community in mind.
Following suit, Gary attributes the success of The Singing Machine Co. to the ability to understand both who you are and your brand. Gary gave advice that suggests that business owners should know and maximize what they do best and cut back on non-core categories and/or products. Once a business has matured to the point of creating tremendous value from what it does well, Gary shares that it is also important to embrace the concept of alliances to create something unique: “Leveraging potential collaborations can enable anyone to create infinite possibilities.” One occasion of collaboration for The Singing Machine Co. has famously manifested itself with the advent of a special karaoke car microphone used for James Corden’s Carpool Karaoke media phenomenon.
Tom Wallace, however, summarized his response to answering the question of what makes a successful venture capitalist to developing the skill of relying on your gut feeling about people—a simple, yet brutally honest, response. Tom shared that it comes down to understanding and observing how the people in which you are investing operate. Florida Funders looks for people with real commitment, drive and an ability to execute, in addition to brilliant minds with bright ideas. “We don’t just write checks,” Tom explains. It is important to understand and realize that without the right people, angel investing cannot be done.
Ultimately, the task of maximizing business value is driven by a pursuit of passion, commitment and opportunity. Creating value comes from a steady embrace of talent that focuses on innovating around what it does best in order to create a brand that serves the community and embodies its customers.