Twelve members of the Georgia Association of Business Brokers (GABB) were named to the 2022 Million Dollar Club for helping broker the sale of more than $96 million worth of small, medium and large businesses.
The GABB Million Dollar Club recognizes professional Business Brokers for successfully
closing business acquisition transactions totaling one million dollars or more.
The top producer for 2022 was Rob Margeton, a Principal and Qualifying Broker at Ryco Advisors. Mr. Margeton was also honored as a Life Member of the Million Dollar Club for achieving more than a million dollars in sales for three consecutive years or any five years.
“It’s an honor to be recognized by GABB as the Top Producer for 2022,” says Rob Margeton. “We have worked hard for our clients this year and are proud of the results we have achieved on their behalf. We look forward to a successful 2023 and value our membership with GABB.”
Business brokers among the top five brokers with multi-million dollars in business sales for the year are Matt Wochele, Founder of Preferred Business Brokers, Inc.; J. Snypp, Vice President at Preferred Business Brokers, Inc; Steve Josovitz, President Vice-President and Associate Broker at The Shumacher Group; and Karl Barham, co-owner and President of Transworld Business Advisors of Atlanta Peachtree.
Other business brokers with multi-million dollars in business sales for the year were Solomon Padilla, Business Advisor at Transworld Business Advisors of Atlanta Peachtree; Pedro Ferreira, Business Advisor at Transworld Business Advisors of Atlanta North; Lisa Young, Senior Business Advisor at Transworld Business Advisors of Atlanta North; Jeffery Merry, founder of the BUSINESS HOUSE, inc.; and Deanna Dickinson, REALTOR® and owner of Team DMD Consulting.
Mr. Wochele, Mr. Josovitz, and Mr. Merry were honored as Silver Phoenix Members of the Million Dollar Club for achieving more than a million dollars in sales for any twenty-five years.
The Georgia Association of Business Brokers (GABB) is the only organization in the state dedicated to improving the level of knowledge and professionalism in the industry through education, mentoring, a code of ethics, and networking. GABB Broker Members have represented thousands of business sellers and buyers, and the group has a dedicated membership of lenders, attorneys, and other professionals to assist business buyers and sellers at every step of the process.
“As an association, we strive to keep our members informed about financing trends, alternative financing methods, legal issues that may impact members’ practices, new regulations on our industry and best ethical practices,” explains GABB President Judy Mims. “Through speakers at our monthly meetings, mentoring and networking opportunities, the GABB provides educational opportunities to help ensure the knowledge needed to get these transactions completed.”
The GABB’s website lists hundreds of businesses and franchises for sale throughout Georgia in a variety of fields, including automotive, business services, child care, cleaning, construction, electronics equipment, fitness, flooring, floral, food, gas stations, landscaping, manufacturing, medical, shipping, restaurants, retail, security, signs, and businesses related to the internet.
Find a professional business broker today at https://gabb.org/gabb-business-brokers/.
ROB MARGETON is Principal and Qualifying Broker at Ryco Advisors and has over 18 years of experience working in the financial services industry and running his own business. He is certified as a Mergers & Acquisitions Master Intermediary through M&A Source. Our clients typically generate revenues ranging from $3 million to $50 million. In FY 2022, Ryco Advisors sold over $30 million of business transaction value. Prior to co-founding Ryco Advisors, Mr. Margeton served as a Managing Director at Capstone Advisory Group, a New York middle-market restructuring and financial advisory consulting firm. During his tenure there, he advised clients on over 50 transactions across a diverse set of industries. His transaction experience included marketing and selling businesses, business plan evaluation, strategic business planning, term sheet negotiations, due diligence, mergers and acquisitions, cash management and forecasting, and cost reduction. Mr. Margeton also has extensive experience running and managing his own business. Together with Lindsay Margeton, he acquired the flagship Fleet Clean location in 2013 and oversaw a successful sales process in 2018. During their tenure at Fleet Clean, the company’s revenues and EBITDA grew by over 75% and 95%, respectively. They managed over 30 employees and serviced more than 150 clients throughout Metro Atlanta, including many Fortune 500 companies.
MATT WOCHELE, CBI (Certified Business Intermediary) founded Preferred Business Brokers, Inc. in 1996 after a successful 17-year career in the investment banking industry. He is a Life Member of the GABB’s Million Dollar Club, Vice President of the GABB board, a GABB Silver Phoenix Award recipient and a member of the International Business Brokers Association (IBBA). As President and Managing Broker of Preferred Business Brokers, Inc., he has had the opportunity to be personally involved in hundreds of private business sales. The combined personal experience in the public sector with the private business sales has positioned the company to handle both the smaller main street business deals and the larger middle-market business acquisitions. Matt and his wife, Kathy, a professional artist, have five daughters and live in Sandy Springs.
J. SNYPP III, a former GABB board member and recent continuing education class instructor, lives in Dunwoody, grew up in Atlanta, and graduated from Georgia Southern University with a degree in marketing. Mr. Snypp spent more than two decades in the office furniture business before becoming a business broker and has been with Preferred Business Brokers, Inc. for more than fifteen years, serving as Vice President and Associate Broker. He has found success selling businesses in a variety of industries, most recently selling a childcare center and trash-hauling business. He is past president of the Dunwoody North Driving Club, a board member of the Dunwoody High School Gridiron Club, and chairman of the Wildcat Classic Golf Tournament which benefits the Dunwoody football team. He has also served on the board of the Dunwoody High School Tip-Off Club and the diaconate of his church. He serves on the Renegades Forever board which raises money for Atlanta area rugby. He is married and has two boys, ages 19 and 24. Therefore, when he is not selling businesses, he is usually trying to keep up with the boys or involved in some other family activity.
STEVEN JOSOVITZ is President Vice-President and Associate Broker of The Shumacher Group, having joined the firm in 1992. As an Associate Real Estate Broker, he heads up the company’s restaurant business brokerage division in addition to providing commercial retail and restaurant real estate site selection, sales, and lease negotiation expertise. A former restaurant owner and trained professional chef, Steven has an extensive background in restaurant and hotel management. He also offers consulting, appraisal services and has been retained by law firms for his expert opinion to help settle disputes. Mr. Josovitz earned a B.S. in Hotel/Restaurant Management from Florida International University in 1981 and has studied in Europe. Mr. Josovitz is a member of the Georgia Restaurant Association, Georgia Association of Business Brokers (GABB), International Council of Shopping Centers, and the Retail Brokers Network. As a 30-year GABB member, Mr. Josovitz was awarded Life Member and The Phoenix Award and annually receives the Multi-Million Dollar Club Award and Top Five Award for business and restaurant brokerage sales in Georgia. Steven’s goals and thoughts are always: “Make sure all parties, Buyers, Sellers, and Landlords walk away from the closing table happy. Maintaining integrity and honesty along with professionalism and expertise is a must. The needs of your clients and those you work with must always come first before commissions or personal gain.”
KARL BARHAM is a co-owner and President of Transworld Business Advisors of Atlanta Peachtree. Karl is a licensed Georgia Real Estate agent and member of the Georgia Association of Business Broker’s (GABB). Karl’s 25+ years of expert knowledge in business is now used to help business owners with valuations, business exit planning, M&A, and Business Sales transactions. He speaks the language of small business to help small business owners start/acquire, grow, and then successfully exit businesses. When Karl is not helping clients he can be found volunteering and supporting a number of
great organizations in the Metro Atlanta area including Atlanta Black Chambers of Commerce, StartMe:Atlanta, and Junior Achievement. He serves on several nonprofit boards including Southwest Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce, Cornerstone Christian Academy, and Global Growers Network.
SOLOMON PADILLA is a Business Broker and Real Estate Professional at Transworld Business Advisors of Atlanta Peachtree located in Peachtree Corners, Georgia, and has a passion for helping small business owners accomplish a successful exit of their business. Solomon previously worked as a Trade Activation Manager for Anheuser-Busch InBev, and a Manager for the Largest Italian Wine Importer in the United States. Solomon is a Veteran of the Navy who served a tour of duty in 2012-2013 in Afghanistan for Operation Enduring Freedom and various tours representing the U.S. Navy for NATO in Europe. Solomon attended College at Gulf Coast State College in the Florida Panhandle majoring in Psychology and Sociology.
PEDRO FERREIRA is a Business Broker with Transworld Business Advisors. Mr. Ferreira has successfully sold businesses from several industries including technology, automotive, retail, hospitality, construction, distribution, beauty, and manufacturing. He is committed to creating win-win deals by listening to the needs of all the parties involved and providing the most comprehensive business sale process. Mr. Ferreira has volunteered as a PR Director with the Brazilian American Chamber of Commerce of the Southeast and has published business and economics articles in government and international media publications. He has served on the advisory board of the Customer Experience Executive Education program at George Washington University and on the Food and Beverage Advisory Board of the Georgia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. Mr. Ferreira has volunteered as Assistant Director of Development at Peacebuilding Solutions and as an Artistic Associate for Pinch ‘N’ Ouch Theatre. He currently lives in Suwanee.
LISA YOUNG is a Senior Business Advisor at Transworld Business Advisors of Atlanta North. She is an alumna of Georgia College and State University in Milledgeville, where she earned a BBA in Information Systems, and in 2020, Lisa completed a certified M&A program from Kennesaw State University. Through her extensive background in real estate, entrepreneurship, and business consulting, Ms. Young brings a broad spectrum of knowledge and expertise to her clients and is passionate about helping them achieve their goals. She maintains residences in both Canton and Greensboro so that she may better serve her clients. She is a Life Member of the GABB Multi-Million Dollar Club and has been a Transworld Business Advisors President’s Club member for the last five years. A proud “Gigi” of three grandchildren, Ms. Young enjoys hiking, swimming, boating, golf, and volunteer work with organizations such as Second Harvest Food Bank, Habitat for Humanity, and her church.
JEFFERY MERRY, Sr., M.B.A. J.D., is a past president of the GABB, has been the GABB’s top producer many times, and has been a part of the Million Dollar Club since its inception. He has served on the GABB Board of Directors for a number of terms and is currently serving on the GABB Board in 2022. Mr. Merry, owner and founder of the BUSINESS HOUSE, Inc., is also a member of the International Business Brokers Association (IBBA) and the Business Brokers of Florida Association. For more than three decades, his firm has specialized in serving the manufacturing, distribution, technology, service, veterinary and medical industries. As a business intermediary, Certified Exit Planner, and consultant, Mr. Merry has been involved in mergers and acquisitions that have ranged in acquisition price from $60,000 to more than $15 million. He is a member of the Advisory Board at the University of North Georgia and is a past adjunct instructor for their MBA program. Mr. Merry holds a bachelor’s degree from Mercer University in Macon, a Master of Business Administration from the University of Illinois Edwardsville, and a Juris Doctor degree from Atlanta Law School. Mr. Merry is a licensed Real Estate Agent in several southeastern states, a Senior Business Analyst, and a member of the Exit Planning Institute. Mr. Merry and his wife, Mary, reside in Suwanee. He has five children and five grandchildren and enjoys traveling, reading, and riding his motorcycle.
DEANNA DICKINSON is a Georgia REALTOR® and new member of GABB, having joined in 2022. Ms. Dickinson has been in the dental industry for more than 40 years in clinical, sales and consulting. She is the owner of Team DMD Consulting and specializes in dental practice transitions, and is a member of the 400 North Association of REALTORS® and the Atlanta Commercial Board of REALTORS®. Deanna is married and has two grown daughters—one married who owns her own marketing business, and one who will graduate in April from Cumberland School of Law at Samford. She has a new granddaughter as well and enjoys spending time with family and friends. Ms. Dickinson is a Georgia native and resides in Dawsonville. Her hobbies include playing tennis and boating on Lake Lanier.
BROOKE HAWKINS is a Business Broker with RamBiz Group, based in Marietta, GA. As a lawyer, former franchise business owner and entrepreneur, Brooke brings a different perspective to the table when it comes to buying and selling a business. With his attention to detail and his unique approach to the franchise and business world, Brooke helps those considering such a move and will help ensure a smooth and rewarding transition. He is a graduate of Auburn University and Nashville School of Law, and practiced in Tennessee for many years before relocating to Georgia. After a 15-year career in legal technology sales and 15-years of owning multiple franchises through Raving Brands, he joined RamBiz Group in February 2020.
MANNIE MADDOX is a REALTOR® with Coldwell Banker Commercial Metro Brokers and a longtime member of GABB. Mr. Maddox has over 35 years of business development, sales and capture management experience in the commercial and federal government marketplaces. Throughout his tenure, he successfully developed and led capture teams that won major government RFPs greater than $1B in revenue and gained extensive experience as a Fortune 500 executive-level marketing professional. His high-level, large-dollar volume sales experience has proven to be a major contributor to his success in commercial real estate sales and marketing as a business broker and real estate advisor.Read More
The GABB is now accepting applications for the 2022 Million Dollar Club, recognizing members who have sold businesses that added together are worth at least $1 million in the previous year. The deadline for submitting applications is Nov. 5, 2022.
Awardees will be honored at the annual GABB Holiday Gala at Villa Christina on Thursday, December 8, at 7:00pm.
GABB members are eligible for the:
- Million Dollar Club if they have eligible sales from Nov. 1, 2021 to Oct. 31, 2022 of $1,000,000 to $1,999,999.
- Multi-Million Dollar Club if they have eligible sales generated totaling $2,000,000 or more during the same period.
- Life Membership in the Million Dollar Club when they’ve been elected to the Million Dollar Club for three consecutive years or any 5 years.
- Phoenix Award if they have been elected to the Million Dollar Club for any 10 years.
- Silver Phoenix if they have been elected to the Million Dollar Club for any 25 years.
To be eligible for the award, an applicant must be a current member in good standing of the Georgia Association of Business Brokers. Each business sold doesn’t have to be worth more than a million, but the total sales price of all businesses sold during the qualifying period must total a million or more. Only transactions closed after the effective date of membership in GABB will count towards Million Dollar Club volume. All Million Dollar Club members must have attended at least three GABB events during the eligible period, such as meetings, conferences, or social events, either in person or online.
The online application, along with detailed rules about the club, can be found at the GABB website.
Please contact Courtney.firstname.lastname@example.org or 770-744-3639 if you have any additional questions about this matter, or if you are unable to complete this application online.Read More
We welcomed seven new Broker Members to the GABB in the first quarter of 2022! We are grateful for our continued growth as an organization post-pandemic. Read more about our new members below.
Broker Members not pictured are Solomon Padilla, Hector Rojas, and Jennifer West.
Deanna Dickinson, a native of Atlanta, Georgia, has 21 years in the dental consulting business industry helping dentists throughout the state, both as a dental consultant for 15 years with the largest dental distributor in the world and for 6 years with her own consulting business, Team DMD Consulting. She helps senior dentists broker their practices and also has her real estate license with specialization in commercial transactions to help all types of doctors with their properties.
Andy Harrison is a graduate with a Bachelor of Civil Engineering from Georgia Tech and an MBA from Kennesaw State University. Since 2003, Andy has been personally buying, selling, investing, and managing companies, signal family/multi-family and retail investment properties. He left corporate America in 2012 and purchased a brokerage so that he could assist investors by purchasing and selling companies and real estate. His company also provides property management to investors that hold their investment properties for cash flow. Andy is a licensed real estate broker with has knowledge and experience to help investors with the purchase or sell of their business and the entire business cycle for investment properties. Andy also advises investors on the following strategies: fix and flips, rehabbing, land contracts, 1031 tax-deferred exchanges, IRA investing, lease options, option contracts, and creative seller financing solutions.
Megan Lyons has been a resident of Georgia for over 20 years and has lived in several areas in and around Atlanta. She is very familiar with the areas of Decatur, Kirkwood, East Atlanta, Chamblee, Midtown, Brookhaven, Buckhead, Sandy Springs, Dunwoody, Alpharetta, Roswell, Marietta, and Woodstock but is certainly not limited to them. Constantly visiting new places around the city is what keeps her up-to-date with the latest information on the market.
After graduating from Georgia College & State University with a B.A. in Management, Megan worked in sales for The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company. In an effort to further her career Megan changed companies in 2008 to do marketing work for a boutique home-building company. It was here that she realized her passion in life–real estate!
Megan’s experiences in sales, marketing, customer service, and home-building enhance her ability to provide her clients with the most accurate and up-to-date information, useful resources and tools to help them along the way, as well as top-notch customer service.
Tatiana Yagecic was introduced to business at an early age when her father opened his first restaurant in Slovakia. She quickly learned the ins-and-outs of various hospitality operations because of her willingness to learn every job. She worked closely by her dad’s side as the business venture expanded.
Welcoming the opportunity, she moved to the United States and pursued a hospitality degree. Having the experience of starting and operating various businesses, she was recommended to join the Best Business Brokers team as a Marketing Director. Her drive and focus quickly led her to become licensed in Real Estate and transition into the role of a Business Broker. Naturally, her initial focus is on hospitality operations, and she strives to help her clients raise the value of their businesses. This industry has been at the forefront of her career her entire life, and her expertise will contribute to many successful business and real estate acquisitions. Tatiana serves the Charleston, South Carolina area, which is her favorite city to explore with her husband and two beautiful children.Read More
The Georgia Association of Business Brokers (GABB) welcomed two new Affiliate Members in the first quarter of 2022–Ashley Olejnik of The Bancorp and Mitch Belton of First Port City Bank. We are very excited to have them join our ever-growing group of professionals who work with and support the business brokerage industry. Read more about Ms. Olejnik and Mr. Belton below.
Ashley Olejnik is an industry expert with more than 16 years of successful experience in the full life cycle of Small Business Administration (SBA) lending. She joined The Bancorp as a Business Development Officer in 2019 where she has developed relationships using SBA products inclusive of 504, 7a and Express. With extensive knowledge in structuring loans, she assists her clients across the Nation find financing solutions for their business needs. Ashley’s greatest strength is her passion to help her clients achieve their business needs. Her recent projects include business acquisitions, partner buyouts, Commercial Real Estate purchases and construction.
Amongst her previous positions, Ashley closed SBA loans for financial institutions in the Atlanta and Raleigh areas. This role allowed her to work hand in hand with clients while protecting her employer’s SBA Guaranty.
In 2015, Ashley completed the Lender Diploma Program from The National Association of Government Guaranteed Lenders (NAGGL). She also attends yearly NAGGL conferences to stay abreast of the industry changes.
Ashley enjoys spending time with her family, listening to live music and playing golf. She currently lives in Nashville, TN but frequently travels to Georgia where she is originally from.
Mitch Belton earned his B.S and MBA from Clemson University where he was a 3-year letterman, record holder and Team Captain for the Clemson Tiger football team. Following graduation, he got his start in banking by working as an Associate Relationship Manager for Bank of America, he has held Senior Lending positions at Bank of America, Wells Fargo, JP Morgan Chase and First National Bank.
Mitch joined First Port City Bank team in 2022 with over two decades of lending knowledge and SBA expertise. In his role, Mitch specializes in Business Development and structuring loans for healthcare, construction, acquisition and development and commercial real estate.
Mitch enjoys working with brokers (Yes, we pay broker fees!!) and small business owners to develop creative financing solutions by utilizing the SBA loan programs. He puts his years of experience to work for each client to ultimately produce the best lending solution for their needs.
When he is not at work, Mitch enjoys officiating high school and college sports, mentoring youth, positively affecting his community and spending time with his daughter.
Our GABB Broker Member Gene Wright of Northstar Consulting offers his thoughts on the state of business in these unprecedented times:
“Why Does it Seem the World’s on Fire While Business is Going 90 MPH?”
We’re living in unprecedented times in a world no one could imagine only a few weeks ago. While the world has united in solidarity with Ukraine, one man holds us hostage with an all or nothing strategy he believes will bend the US to his will. I’m afraid things may become worse before getting better and the economic impact on small business owners in Georgia is real.
Locally we’re living through staggering inflation not seen in years. Commodity prices are at an all time high with seemly no relief in sight. Gas prices are above $4 a gallon and at the grocery store prices seem to increase every week. “Round and round and round we go, where it stops nobody knows.” It seems that good news about the retreat of COVID after two years of business disruption is hardly noticed.
I spoke with an owner of a large brokerage in Nebraska recently who represents sellers on a national level. She was very pleased with her company’s progress this year so far, having done over 80 business valuations since January. She’s seeing more seller and buyer interest than in 2019. She told me smart sellers are pricing goods and materials on a cost-plus basis, with many adding fuel surcharges for job travel in response to higher inflation to protect profits. Service businesses are still handicapped by the need for more workers, but seem hopeful that as COVID fades, more people will return to work. Supply chain interruptions are forcing small business owners to carry more inventory than ever but seem hopeful that conditions will improve in the second half of the year.
In our business, we’re seeing far more buyers than last year, and it seems there’s a shortage of good cash flowing businesses available for them to buy. SBA lenders are calling to ask what we have in the pipeline, and some are offering to do deals with 90% loan coverage for exceptionally qualified buyers. That means that buyers still have access to low interest rates (historically) and can receive better return on capital invested than many other investment options.
If you’re a small business owner thinking about selling, now is the time to learn more about selling your business before interest rates rise later in the year. Business is going 90 MPH while the world is on fire!
April 2022Read More