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KEYSTONE

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2020 SMALL TRANSACTION OF THE YEAR

Keystone is the proud recipient of the Turnaround Management Association's 2020 Small Transaction of the Year Award for Confluence Outdoor! The project team, composed of Brian Stewart, Evan Farrell, and Kurt Gutwein, will be recognized at TMA's 12th Annual Executive Speaker Forum on November 12th at 4:00 P.M. For more information on how to sign up, click the link below. Congrats to the team for their hard work and achievement of this prestigious award!

ANTHONY URBAITES LEADS AXION WEBINAR

Keystone Senior Principal Anthony Urbaites teamed up with Axion to share his insights with midmarket executives working toward manufacturing recovery and a successful 2021. Topics included managing  cash, restructuring the organization, productivity & efficiently, evaluating the physical footprint of operations, opportunistic acquisitions, re-evaluating product lines, and business strategy. Special thanks to Axion RMS, Ltd. for hosting the event!

BEYOND WHAT YOU KNOW ABOUT US

We have built our name around our work in the manufacturing, distribution, and transportation spaces. But, did you know that we also have experience in several other industries? Check out the graphic below to learn more about our breadth of experience in the US and Internationally!

JOE ZITO PARTICIPATES IN ACG WEBINAR

Keystone Partner Joe Zito participated as a panelist in a virtual webinar for ACG titled “Manufacturing: Changes To Adapt To Current Forces”.  The discussion was centered around the impacts of COVID-19 on the manufacturing industry and the focus of companies going forward. Topics included observations in domestic and international plants, reshoring, and logistics. View the webinar using the link below.

2020 MIDYEAR REVIEW

2020 has been full of new challenges for Keystone and our clients as we learn to navigate the landscape of COVID-19. That said, we are more committed than ever to helping clients develop strategies, improve operations, restructure finances, and integrate acquisitions that deliver the desired results. See the infographic below for examples of current projects and more information about how we are helping the COVID-19 economy.

HOMEBUILDING TRIP TO COSTA RICA

In February, Keystone traveled to San José, Costa Rica where the team built two houses for families in need with the help of Homes of Hope. Keystone has built 16 homes since 2004; however, this was the company's first trip to Costa Rica. Previous build sites have included locations in Mexico, the Dominican Republic, and Panama. We are fortunate to continue this tradition, which allows the Keystone team to build camaraderie, inspire each other, and give back to the community.

2019 IN REVIEW

2019 was a great year at The Keystone Group! The firm completed a combined 45 projects across the U.S. and internationally for both new and existing clients. Keystone was recognized as a top consulting firm by Vault, ranking 19th across all firms and ranking 1st for firm culture! In addition, new members joined the team and Keystone made a difference by raising money for charity during its 9th annual softball tournament. For a complete overview of 2019, see the infographic.

WELCOME KEYSTONE CLASS OF 2019

Keystone is proud to have introduced six new members in 2019: Doug Allen, Paul Giorgi, Kurt Gutwein, Abby Huelfer, Paige O'Piela and Guillermo Tinoco! These talented individuals come from various universities and academic backgrounds, and are eager to help our clients in solving their most difficult challenges. To learn more about our new hires, click on the link below.

CHARITY SOFTBALL TOURNAMENT

September 2019 marked Keystone's ninth time hosting the Annual Chairty Softball Tournament benefiting Camperships for Nebagamon.  The tournament raises money to help deserving boys and girls to enjoy life-changing experiences while diversifying and enriching the camp community.  CIBC fought hard against Keystone's team to take home the trophy for the third year in a row. Thank you to all of the teams, donors, and volunteers for helping to make this tournament our most attended and successful one to date! We look forward to making a difference in the lives of these children for years to come.

JEFF ALVIS APPEARS ON M&A UNPLUGGED

On this episode of the M&A Unplugged podcast, Keystone Director Jeff Alvis talks about the firm's involvement in mergers and acquisitions, from the diligence and planning phases all the way through realization of synergies. The discussion also covers the role of culture and the importance of planning. Jeff conveys to listeners that integration should never be an afterthought.

VAULT RANKINGS 2020

Keystone is proud to be recognized as a top tier consulting firm to work for in Vault's 2020 Consulting Firm Rankings.​ Among other honors, Keystone was recognized as the #19 Best Consulting Firm, #5 Best Boutique Consulting Firm, and #1 for Firm Culture. Vault rankings are based on consultant survey responses and are evaluated across eight different criteria including prestige, culture, work-life balance, and ability to challenge.

 
 

FEATURED INSIGHTS

COMMON WARNING SIGNS ASSOCIATED WITH BUSINESS UNIT BEHAVIORS

Written by Paul Giorgi and Emily Harig

Our infographic explores the behaviors and early warning signs associated with five common business cases, including overly focused top line growth, concentrated senior management structures, operation and productivity focuses,  highly customized product portfolios, and short term financial result prioritization. Are any of these behaviors being exhibited in your company? Learn how to identify the warning signs associated with these strategies before they start impacting your bottom line.

MIDDLE MARKET TRENDS: TARIFF SURVEY RESULTS

Written by Emily Harig and Amar Shah, Contributed to by Ryan Budicin 

The Keystone Group recently conducted a survey-based analysis to learn more about the impact of recent tariffs on the middle market. Respondents included a variety of industries and largely represented the middle market with 81% having revenues under $1B. Of the respondents, nearly 75% reported having to pay additional tariffs in 2018 and 2019, and 58% are considering alternate sourcing locations.  Our infographic summarizes the survey results. For further details, see our full report

HOW TO IMPROVE POST-MERGER INTEGRATION

Written by Jeff Alvis and Christophe Jeannin, Featured in Mergers & Acquisitions

Customer defections are a key reason for why more than half of all mergers fail to deliver the intended improvement in shareholder value. While merged companies focus on the quick capture of synergies, they typically lose sight of customers - just when the risk of losing those customers is at its highest. As featured in Mergers & Acquisition, Jeff Alvis and Christophe Jeannin address the reasons why this occurs and identify the "Must-Do's" for all deals.

MIDDLE MARKET TRENDS: MANAGING SKU PROLIFERATION FOR DISTRIBUTORS

Written by Amar Shah, Danielle Moushon, and Sunil Agarwal

Particularly for distributors, the constant pressure to carry a larger variety of products can be misleading. Adding new products can lead to new customers, increased sales and a higher switching cost for customers. However, a large portfolio can also add hidden cost and complexity to the business, creating narrower margins and reducing overall profitability. This is called SKU proliferation. The analytical process of developing and implementing a strategy by SKU is called product rationalization. Also known as product portfolio optimization, successful SKU rationalization results in an increase in profitability, decrease in working capital, and improvement in customer service levels. The overall complexity of running the business will drop as the portfolio becomes more streamlined.

SETTING THEM UP FOR SUCCESS: ACQUISITION & TRANSITION IN THE ORGANIZATIONAL CULTURE

Written by Jeff Alvis, Featured in Pitchbook

There are more than a few stories about M&A deals that looked good on paper but never had lived up to their potential. Inattentive or poor culture integration is one of the main reasons that industry leaders cite when they describe deals that were unknowingly "set up for failure". As featured in Pitchbook, Jeff Alvis identifies 5 simple things your business can do to ensure an effective cultural transition during a merger.

HOW TO GENERATE MORE VALUE AS A CFO

Written by Bill Budicin, Featured in CFO Magazine

Adding value beyond closing the books and reporting financial information can be a struggle.  Break out of the 'bean counter' mold and change how others perceive you with four helpful tips: 1. Take down the CPA certificate, 2. Expand your thinking, 3. Restructure metrics throughout your organization, and 4. Manage risk.

MIDDLE MARKET TRENDS: OFFSHORING MANUFACTURING AND SOURCING

Written by Amar Shah and Danielle Moushon

As manufacturing costs in low-cost countries have increased, there have been several publications assessing whether it makes sense to re-shore production. Many of these publications have focused on the large corporate market. The Keystone Group’s experience working primarily with mid-market companies has indicated that mid-market companies face unique challenges and risks and need to have their own customized criteria and guidelines to assist them in their offshoring and outsourcing decisions. The Keystone Group administered a survey to mid-market C-level executives across multiple industries with the goal to document the current state of mid-market offshoring and outsourcing.

TROUBLE ON THE ROAD: HOW TO MAXIMIZE THE OUTCOME

Written by Brian Stewart, Featured in Equipment Finance Advisor 

When the level of distress in the trucking industry increases, what is the best path to maximize your return – what should you do? Of course there isn’t just one optimal course, but I will give you a path that we have found works very well. 

THE EFFECT OF OLD VS. NEW TRUCKS ON MAINTENANCE COSTS & FUEL ECONOMY

Written by Brian Stewart, Featured in Equipment Finance Advisor 

As manufacturing costs in low-cost countries have increased, there have been several publications assessing whether it makes sense to re-shore production. Many of these publications have focused on the large corporate market. The Keystone Group’s experience working primarily with mid-market companies has indicated that mid-market companies face unique challenges and risks and need to have their own customized criteria and guidelines to assist them in their offshoring and outsourcing decisions. The Keystone Group administered a survey to mid-market C-level executives across multiple industries with the goal to document the current state of mid-market offshoring and outsourcing.

© 2020 The Keystone Group. All Rights Reserved.

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