Having the right plan and strategy in place will always determine your outcome and success.
Matthew Brunstrum grew up in Libertyville, Illinois. He attended Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana and majored in Finance within the Kelley School of Business. After college, Matthew transitioned life from Libertyville, Illinois to Chicago, IL, where he worked at Forum Financial, a private wealth management firm for high net worth individuals as an Associate. Matthew then moved positions to Stericycle and joined their Mergers & Acquisitions Department as a Financial Analyst. While at Stericycle, he worked on over 50 potential acquisitions and after 2 years, was promoted to Director, Mergers & Acquisitions where he was responsible for sourcing, negotiation, and closing deals.
Matthew has been with Sun Acquisitions & MCB Advisory LLC as an Advisor since September 2017, where he represents owners of Businesses worth $1M-$25M across a wide variety of sectors. Matthew Brunstrum has a history of bringing sellers, buyers, accountants, attorneys, and lenders together for a successful transaction in an efficient manner. More importantly, he maximizes the value of his client’s business in each sale.
Where did the idea for your company come from?
The idea for MCB Advisory LLC came from after working on 50+ acquisitions at Stericycle Inc. I learned the nuances of the M&A industry for small, privately held business acquisitions and what both sellers and buyers were looking for & needed in each transaction.
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
The beauty of my industry is that there is no typical day; which keeps me energetic and passionate about each acquisition. Each deal is different, and every business has different attributes & characteristics. Overall, I spend my days talking on the phone with both owners and potential buyers, analyzing company financials, reviewing legal documents like NDA’s & LOI’s, coordinating with my marketing team and sourcing new deals.
How do you bring ideas to life?
I bring ideas to life by consulting and discussing with other professionals. I strategize and think thru every idea and all options before enacting. Everything I do in my professional life has a logical, rational, and strategic approach to it.
What’s one trend that excites you?
The “Greatest Wealth Transfer of All-Time” which refers to the large number of Baby-Boomer owned Small Businesses (estimated at $10 Trillion in Value) that will need to be transitioned to younger generations or sold within the next 2 decades. For the M&A industry, this creates a lot of deal flow especially when interest rates are low, and buyers have a lot of excess capital to deploy.
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?
By far and away, my habit of planning makes me more productive as an entrepreneur. Many entrepreneurs have countless ideas/thoughts that pull them in multiple directions. Before embarking on an any idea or thought, I plan thru the required steps and create Pro-Forma estimates & timelines to help stay on track and analyze.
What advice would you give your younger self?
I would tell my younger self to pursue a degree in Both Accounting and Finance instead of just Finance. Accounting in all businesses, but especially in Mergers & Acquisitions, is vital and something every entrepreneur needs to understand. Accounting is something I had to learn on the job at an early age but having a dual degree would have saved me a lot of time and headaches when analyzing the numbers on each deal.
Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.
“Patience is a virtue”. Although most people have heard of this phrase, very few people in todays modern age of technology are patient. In M&A, you must be patient at certain milestones of the transaction process in order to be successful.
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
Plan and re-plan. Every quarter, I plan for all facets of my business. Sales, New Business Development, Expenses, Margins, Changing of Procedures for more efficiency, new ideas, creating Pro-Formas etc. Without planning, you don’t have a benchmark and nothing to compare your actual results too.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?
A strategy of mine that has helped me grow my business is to target select niche industries. I look for companies in industries that have high recurring revenue (multi-year contracts are preferred), high EBITDA margins (25%+), high multiples, (5x+), fragmented industry, and strategic buyers conducting acquisitions. A few examples of these industries are Document Destruction, Records Management, Solid Waste, Medical Waste, Hazardous Waste, Commercial Landscaping & Commercial Cleaning.
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
Every entrepreneur knows that failures are part of the game & a reality with owning your own business. It is what you learn from each mistake and how you overcome each challenge that defines your success as an entrepreneur.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
Always say yes to new opportunities/introductions/inquiries/phone-calls from others looking to network. You never know what you might stumble on and 1 good phone call can make up for 10 bad ones. I think many people are stuck in their ways, are scared to try something new, and dismiss new ideas too quickly. These intro’s can be 15-30 minutes and really open your mind.
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?
I recently bought Salesforce CRM for MCB Advisory. It keeps my entire business life all in one place and automates my day to day and new business development. I highly recommend this for any business.
What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive?
Salesforce CRM for Small Business. See above. I mostly use this for new business development rather than Excel. It keeps everything in one place and has made me way more efficient.
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
“The Art of the Good Life” by Rolf Dobelli. It discusses a variety of idea on business, psychology, social issues, and happiness in the modern world.
What is your favorite quote?
My favorite quote is from NC State Basketball Coach Jim Valvano. It is “Don’t Give Up. Don’t ever give up”. That quote has always inspired me since I was a child and one, I always hear during March Madness season due to my love of college basketball.
- It takes an entrepreneur to sell another entrepreneur’s business.
- Having the right plan and strategy in place will always determine your outcome and success.
Steve (Stefan) Junge hails from Germany and helps with the day-to-day publishing of interviews on IdeaMensch. While he and Mario don’t share a favorite soccer club, their enthusiasm to help entrepreneurs is a shared passion.