Loading...

Strategy

In partnership with talented business owners and management teams, Prairie makes control equity investments in successful, growth-oriented, lower middle market companies. These companies have attractive market positions in industries with growing primary demand.

We target companies within our sectors of expertise including business services, healthcare, education, consumer, and industrial. We seek to be the company’s first private equity investor. We provide strategic and tactical assistance, along with company-building investments, to evolve these businesses into scalable platforms.

Our partnership approach seeks to ensure philosophical and economic alignment with business owners and management teams. The shared goal is to strategically invest to build and scale great companies.

We provide more than capital. Working intimately with our companies as a thought partner, we leverage experiences gained through our 20-year history and more than 90 platform investments to provide the resources and guidance necessary to enable companies to scale and thrive. We also share best practices across our portfolio and provide access to our extensive network of in-house and third-party resources. We actively participate at the board level, while providing management with the flexibility and autonomy to run the business and execute the mutually agreed-upon strategy.

Value Add

In our experience, company-building investments in human capital, sales and marketing, technology, infrastructure, new products, and supply chain help unlock incremental value embedded in fast-growing, founder-owned businesses. We deeply understand the strategic prioritization and tactical execution of these company-building investments, helping to stimulate growth, create job opportunities, and build value.

Retention of existing management through appropriate incentives, as well as recruitment of new, talented executives, is paramount for successful growth companies. We have extensive experience evaluating, recruiting, and retaining top talent, while preserving and nurturing the culture that contributed to the company’s historical success.
Many founder-owned companies have underinvested in the sales and marketing function. Often the founder may have developed and maintained key customer relationships, making it difficult to scale. We believe that founders recognize the opportunity for sales and marketing investment, but may not have had the risk tolerance or capital to unilaterally make these substantial investments.

Keeping up with technology investments is complicated for lower middle market businesses. Robust systems are necessary for efficient scalability. We have also found that timely access to accurate information leads to better decision-making and improved profitability. Our network of technology-focused resources possesses vast experience in the selection and implementation of numerous technology systems that help position companies to grow.

Fast-growing businesses generally have difficulty keeping up with infrastructure investments. Quality, efficiency, and scalability can all be enhanced by strategic investments in plant and equipment. We have a financial framework and the discipline to make these substantial investments, providing the thought partnership and risk capital necessary to mitigate capacity constraints and enable growth.

Developing and commercializing new products can be a risky proposition for thinly capitalized businesses. We help to mitigate this risk, and improve the chances of success, by bringing to bear our experiences, proven processes and capital.

It is challenging for business owners to find the time, or dedicate the necessary resources, to optimize the supply chain. While organic growth is our number one priority, there remain opportunities to reduce cost and improve quality through investment in supply chain.

As growth-oriented investors, our primary focus is on organic growth. That said, we opportunistically pursue accretive add-on acquisitions with nearly all our portfolio companies. We can act as your outsourced corporate development resource.

TRANSACTIONAL ATTRIBUTES

Click a box below to learn more

We focus on growth buyout transactions. A key component of our due diligence process focuses on understanding market trends and macro industry growth drivers for a target company’s products or services. A typical target company has strong historical growth rates that we believe can be accelerated with properly executed company-building investments. We don’t believe in using a burdensome amount of debt to finance our transactions. We create value by growing businesses, not deleveraging.

Our partnerships are defined by transparency, stewardship and flexibility, as well as economic alignment. While we require a controlling interest, the founders and management teams remain committed to future success and retain substantial ownership stakes in the company.

We seek to be the first private equity investor in founder-owned businesses.  Our flexibility and deep set of experiences uniquely positions us to provide customized and attractive solutions to founders and management teams seeking their first growth capital partner.

COMPANY ATTRIBUTES

  • Healthy culture
  • Growing primary demand for products and services
  • Identifiable organic growth opportunities
  • Value creation opportunities via company-building investments
  • Compelling value proposition yielding attractive profit margins
  • Track record of healthy growth and profitability

INDUSTRY FOCUS

We subscribe a thematic approach to investing and have developed expertise within the following sectors:

Our partnership approach seeks to ensure philosophical and economic alignment with business owners and management teams. The shared goal is to strategically invest to build and scale great companies.

We chose to work with Prairie Capital based on their reputation for honesty and transparency during and after transactions, as well as their focus on lower middle market companies.

They’ve been an excellent partner. Their people are direct and friendly. Even when things get tough, you know you’re on the same team pulling for the same outcome.

CHRIS DOOLEY, CEO, IWTS

We had previous experience working with Prairie, and felt their no-nonsense approach to allowing the team in place to run the business fit with our culture well. It was clear on the front end what they expected of us, and we mutually defined what success was for both companies.

They were not out to change what we do or how we do it, they were there to offer support and advice along the way in order to reach our goals successfully.

JIM WEBSTER, FOUNDER, STYLECRAFT