For twenty five years, Minneapolis-based SealedBid Marketing, Inc. (“SealedBid”) has negotiated successful merger and acquisition transactions for its clients. Since its founding, SealedBid has built a strong reputation in the upper Midwest and beyond as the “go-to” M&A firm for the lower mid-market which is defined as privately held companies with revenues between two million and fifty million dollars. The SealedBid transaction team has over 50 years of experience providing financial, marketing and advisory services for clients pursuing a sale or growth through acquisition.
SealedBid built its reputation as a boutique firm through:
- Outstanding client service
- Expert advice
- An orderly and methodical transaction process
- Consistently excellent results
SealedBid offers its clients diligent research and discreet marketing paired with hands-on, senior-level attention and the full spectrum of its transaction team’s combined expertise. The business practice of focusing on a limited number of engagements at any one point, ensures clients have a dedicated claim on its most valuable resource – time.
SealedBid was founded in 1993 by Gerald Clark―“Jerry” to everyone who knows him. As SealedBid’s Founder and Managing Officer, Jerry leads the transaction team, and is involved in every phase of the transaction process. His 30-plus years of M&A experience allow SealedBid to offer its clients an organized, pragmatic and ultimately successful sales experience. Jerry is an expert M&A negotiator, praised by both buyers and sellers for his integrity, his willingness to listen, his disciplined approach to process and his ability to negotiate a win-win scenario even in the most challenging transactions.
Before founding SealedBid 25+ years ago, Jerry was Director of Sales in Minneapolis, Cleveland and Washington, D.C. for the Resolution Trust Corporation, and his successful management of the marketing and sale of two billion dollars in assets helped give him the knowledge and experience that would be the foundation of SealedBid’s success.
When Jerry founded SealedBid, his recent experience at the Resolution Trust made the marketing and sale of distressed companies SealedBid’s early focus. But as the economy shifted from the recession of the late ‘80s, to the boom of the ‘90s, Jerry embraced the opportunity and quickly added the sale of profitable companies to SealedBid’s services, which is the primary focus today.
It was the first incremental expansion of many for SealedBid. Jerry explains that at first, SealedBid was a small company―just himself and one office assistant―and he was helping sell companies to small buyers. “We were dealing with individuals, financial buyers and strategic buyers looking at the companies we were marketing for sale.”
But as time passed, the word started to get out that this M&A company stayed fully involved with the sales process and engaged with clients throughout every phase of the project, working along-side attorneys and CPAs right through final negotiations to a successful conclusion. Jerry states, “Our reputation was starting to become quite good as far as taking a deal…from pre-transaction to closing with the sellers.”
As word of SealedBid’s expertise and successful results spread, demand for its services grew, and the company expanded the geographical reach. “We started out…in the Minnesota market, then in southern Minnesota and northern Iowa, and continued to expand,” Jerry says.
SealedBid also expanded in terms of the types of companies that it engaged. “We sold a plastics company, and…it kind of put us on the map…then we…did another larger…plastics company, and it just opened a lot of networking opportunities in that manufacturing world, with both buyers and sellers,” Jerry explains.
Now, SealedBid’s clients include companies in various industries, not just in the upper Midwest, but across North America. To maintain the company focus over the last decade, Jerry has worked hard to build a strong transaction team to help meet clients’ needs. Today’s core team includes Vice President Blake Johnson, Senior Advisor Bill Clark, Financial Analyst Larry Lundgren and Marketing Specialist Isabel Meza with the full team totaling about 10 people across various functions. The team concept is a crucial element for Jerry and plays to SealedBid’s overall transaction process and success.
Jerry explains, “Over the last several years, our strong team presence…has really given us a reputation in the market as the firm to go to when marketing a company in the lower mid-market. We strive to provide the same level of expertise, the same process and the same ability to maximize value for clients that don’t attract the big investment banks’ attention. The crew of Blake, Bill and Isabel have really developed a seamless marketing process for the sell-side and the buy-side that accomplishes this well.”
On the occasion of SealedBid’s 25th anniversary, Bill says, “Consistency is our biggest success. Consistency is…many different things. It’s…Jerry Clark, as the team captain with teamwork being the cornerstone of what SealedBid is. It’s the consistency of our process, and the overall success we have brought to our clients for 25+ years.”
Blake adds, “The respect we’ve earned from our peers and transaction professionals throughout the industry speaks volumes to our reputation and quality service.”
As SealedBid celebrates 25 successful years, its founder reiterates his company’s essential philosophy.
“We’re a boutique M&A firm that knows its strengths and enjoys the market niche we serve. Working with clients to make a transaction successful, typically the largest financial event of their lives, is extremely enjoyable and we’re proud to say we build lasting friendships throughout the process,” Jerry concludes. “We’re a boutique firm. We want to keep…our personalized touch.”
If you are interested in learning more about SealedBid, our services or our team, please do not hesitate to contact us at (952) 893-0232. SealedBid will work closely with you, your financial advisor, attorney, accountant and banker from the initial stages of pre-marketing through closing and post-closing.