Seventeen Business Brokers Achieve 2023 GABB Million Dollar Club
Seventeen members of the Georgia Association of Business Brokers (GABB) were awarded the 2023 Million Dollar Club designation for helping broker more than $90 million worth of small, medium, and large businesses.
The GABB Million Dollar Club recognizes excellence, honoring professional Business Brokers that successfully close business acquisition transactions totaling one million dollars or more. This designation is an extension of GABB’s overall mission to support success and professionalism in the business brokerage industry.
The top producer for 2023 is Dave Chambless, President and Co-founder of Abraxas Business Services, which offers services to sellers of businesses with revenues of $5- to $30-million and to individual and strategic buyers of businesses.
Business brokers among the top five brokers with multi-million dollars in business sales for the year are Jeffery Merry, Founder of the BUSINESS HOUSE, inc; Rob Margeton, Co-founder of Ryco Advisors, LLC; Steve Josovitz, President Vice-President and Associate Broker of The Shumacher Group; and Karl Barham, Co-owner and President of Transworld Business Advisors of Atlanta Peachtree.
Other multi-million-dollar business brokers were Lisa Young, Senior Business Advisor at Transworld Business Advisors of Atlanta North; J Snypp, Vice President of Preferred Business Brokers, Inc; Matt Wochele, Founder and President of Preferred Business Brokers, Inc; Solomon Padilla, Business Advisor at Transworld Business Advisors of Atlanta Peachtree; Pedro Ferreira, Business Broker with Transworld Business Advisors; Richard Burgess, Owner and Founder of Priority Business Acquisitions, Inc.; Jeff Heidt, Certified Restaurant Broker for We Sell Restaurants in Metro Atlanta; and Pam Walker, Senior Business Broker with OLD Inc. Business Brokers.
Million-dollar honorees were Jon Roman, Owner of Transworld Business Advisors of Atlanta North; Andrew Greeley, Business Broker with Transworld Business Advisors of Lake Lanier; Brian Judson, Senior Business Broker with Best Business Brokers; and Michael Horwitz, M&A Advisor and Exit Strategy Consultant at Transworld Business Advisors of Atlanta.
Special recognition was previously given to several of the top producers. 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. Mr. Margeton was awarded the Life Member designation of the Million Dollar Club for achieving more than a million dollars in sales for three consecutive years or any five years.
As the state’s only professional organization dedicated to buying and selling businesses, GABB empowers its members through education, mentoring, and networking. GABB Broker Members also operate with integrity, adhering to a code of ethics that ensures the thousands of buyers and sellers represented receive superior service.
“As an association, we have a dedicated membership of lenders, attorneys, and other professionals to assist business buyers and sellers at every step of the process,” explains GABB President Matt Wochele. “We strive to support each and every member to operate at the highest level of success and professionalism.”
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/.
DAVE CHAMBLESS is President and Co-founder of Abraxas Business Services, which offers services to sellers of businesses with revenues of $5- to $30-million and to individual and strategic buyers of companies of wide-ranging sizes. Abraxas focuses on businesses in manufacturing, logistics, technology, and services industries. Prior to co-founding Abraxas, Mr. Chambless had various positions in sales, marketing, and technology firms. He was a CFO for Aaron Rents and for private companies, as well as a management consultant. Mr. Chambless has also twice-served as GABB President and remains quite active in his communities. He is a member of BENS (Business Executives for National Security), the Association for Corporate Growth, and the International Business Brokers Association. Mr. Chambless also serves on a fundraising committee of the Atlanta Area Council of the Boy Scouts of America, the board for the Callanwolde Fine Arts Center, and the finance committee of his church, All Saints’ Episcopal Church, where he has ushered for 37 years. Chambless is also a proud father of five.
JEFFERY MERRY, Sr., M.B.A. J.D., is a past President of the GABB and has been a part of the Million Dollar Club since its inception in 1999. He has also received the Silver Phoenix Award for achieving more than a million dollars in sales for any twenty-five years. 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 helped with mergers and acquisitions ranging 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.
ROB MARGETON is Co-Founder of Ryco Advisors, LLC, an Atlanta-based independent advisory firm focused primarily on selling lower middle market founder- and family-owned companies with valuations ranging from $5 million to $50 million. He is also 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. Mr. Margeton has over nineteen years of experience in financial services and as a business owner. Prior to co-founding Ryco Advisors, Mr. Margeton was a Managing Director at a New York middle-market financial restructuring firm and has worked on more than fifty transactions across a diverse set of industries. He also has extensive experience running and managing his own business. Together with his wife, Mr. Margeton acquired the flagship Fleet Clean location in 2013 and oversaw a successful sales process in 2018. During their tenure, they successfully grew revenues and EBITDA by 75% and 95%, respectively. They managed more than thirty employees and served more than 150 clients throughout Metro Atlanta, including many Fortune 500 companies. An Eagle Scout and a Certified M&A Professional, he is also a board member of M&A Source. He and his family reside in Peachtree City.
STEVEN JOSOVITZ is President Vice-President and Associate Broker of The Shumacher Group, joining the firm in 1992. Mr. Josovitz has also received the Silver Phoenix Award for achieving more than a million dollars in sales for any twenty-five years. As an Associate Real Estate Broker, he heads up the company’s restaurant business brokerage division and provides 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 as well as 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, 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, a global leader in business brokerage and Mergers & Acquisitions. Mr. Barham is a licensed Georgia Real Estate agent and member of the GABB. His 25+ years of expert knowledge in business helps business owners with valuations, business exit planning, M&A, and Business Sales transactions. Mr. Barham speaks the language of small business to help small business owners start, acquire, grow, and then successfully exit businesses. When he is not helping clients, he volunteers and supports a number of great organizations in the Metro Atlanta area, including Atlanta Black Chambers of Commerce, StartMe:Atlanta, and Junior Achievement. Mr. Barham serves on several nonprofit boards, including Southwest Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce, Cornerstone Christian Academy, and Global Growers Network.
LISA YOUNG is a Senior Business Advisor at Transworld Business Advisors of Atlanta North. She is also Treasurer for GABB and a Life Member of the Multi-Million Dollar Club. She is an alumna of Georgia College and State University in Milledgeville, where she earned a BBA in Information Systems, and in 2020, Ms. Young 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 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.
J SNYPP III, is a Board Certified Business Broker, former GABB Board member and recent Continuing Education Class Instructor. He grew up in Atlanta and currently lives in Dunwoody. Mr. Snypp graduated from Georgia Southern University with a degree in marketing. He spent more than two decades in the office furniture business before becoming a Business Broker. Mr. Snypp serves as Vice President and Associate Broker with Preferred Business Brokers, Inc., where he has been for over 15 years. He has found success selling businesses in various industries, most recently selling a childcare center and a trash hauling business. Mr. Snypp 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 as diaconate of his church. Mr. Snypp presently serves on the Renegades Forever board, which raises money for Atlanta area rugby. He is married and has two boys, aged 20 and 25. When he is not selling businesses, Mr. Snypp’s usually trying to keep up with the boys and stay involved with family.
MATT WOCHELE, CBI (Certified Business Intermediary) is Founder of Preferred Business Brokers, Inc., which began in 1996 after a successful 17-year career in the investment banking industry. He is President of the GABB board, a Life Member of the GABB’s Million Dollar Club, 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 smaller main street business deals and larger middle-market business acquisitions. Matt and his wife, Kathy, a professional artist, have five daughters and live in Sandy Springs.
SOLOMON PADILLA is a Business Broker and Real Estate Professional at Transworld Business Advisors of Atlanta Peachtree located in Peachtree Corners, Georgia. He has a passion for helping small business owners accomplish successful exits of their businesses. Before becoming a successful Business Advisor, Mr. Padilla was in the Alcohol and Beverage industry for seven years. He managed multiple states and worked for Anheuser-Busch, Palm Bay Imports, and other start-ups, successfully launching a multitude of new brands. Mr. Padilla is also a Veteran of the Navy, serving a tour of duty in 2012-2013 in Afghanistan for Operation Enduring Freedom and other tours representing the U.S. Navy for NATO in Europe. Mr. Padilla worked directly for CENTCOM under the direct supervision of the Obama administration. He negotiated with Central Asian countries and managed the withdrawal of close to $12B in equipment and over 800 personnel both foreign and military. Mr. Padilla attended Gulf Coast State College in the Florida Panhandle, majoring in Psychology and Sociology.
PEDRO FERREIRA is a Business Broker with Transworld Business Advisors. As a Certified Mergers and Acquisitions Professional (CM&AP), Mr Ferreira is committed to creating win-win deals, and providing the most comprehensive business sale process. He is also a Life Member of the GABB Million Dollar Club and has successfully sold businesses from several industries, including technology, automotive, retail, hospitality, construction, distribution, beauty, and manufacturing. Mr. Ferreira has volunteered as a PR Director with the Brazilian American Chamber of Commerce of the Southeast and 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 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.
RICHARD S BURGESS is Owner and Founder of Priority Business Acquisitions, Inc, which uses a Christ-centered and straightforward approach to its Mergers and Acquisitions services. Mr. Burgess previously served on the GABB board as treasurer. Priority Business Acquisitions, Inc. has over 25 years of successful M & A and real estate experience. Mr. Burgess is a licensed Georgia Real Estate Broker that handles the sale, acquisition, and financing of privately held companies and real estate. The company believes “Any Company is sellable if it is priced right and presented in a positive and honest manner.” He lives in Lawrenceville, GA and attends Christ The Lord Lutheran Church. Mr. Burgess also owns Priority Real Estate Services, LLC, which handles exclusive real estate deals.
JEFF HEIDT is a Certified Restaurant Broker for We Sell Restaurants in the Metro Atlanta area, which he manages with his wife, Kimberly Dart Heidt. Mr. Heidt previously worked in corporate America in management for UPS for 15 years. Prior to UPS, Jeff spent 11 years working for one of Mellow Mushroom’s largest franchisees. Jeff attended Georgia Southern University, The Art Institute of Atlanta, and Thomas Edison University. New in the brokerage world after spending many years in corporate America. He has a passion for soccer and played in college and later coached at Roswell Santos Soccer Club for eight years. In Mr. Heidt’s spare time, he enjoys playing golf with childhood friends he grew up with in Pensacola, FL. He has one son, one stepson, two cats, and one dog.
PAM WALKER is a Senior Business Broker with OLD Inc. Business Brokers and resides in Gwinnett County, conducting business brokerage in Georgia and Alabama. Ms. Walker became a Business Broker, in large part, because of her affinity for small businesses and her passion for providing excellent service to her clients, whether facilitating the sale of a business that a seller has worked hard to build or being an integral part in helping a buyer to realize their dream of owning their own business. With a solid track record of successful business sales across multiple industries, Ms. Walker enjoys bringing value to the partnership with clients and customers on both the sell and buy sides. Her goal is to provide the highest level of professional service and integrity as well as maintain trust and confidentiality. This year, she was one of ten business brokers in Georgia to receive the BCBB (Board Certified Business Broker) designation that identifies an experienced and dedicated Business Broker. The title distinguishes its holder as a seasoned professional who has a solid educational background with proven accomplishments in completing business transactions.
JON ROMAN is Owner of Transworld Business Advisors of Atlanta North, an award-winning group of seven agents, a Franchise Director and marketing staff. He is also Vice President and a multi-million-dollar Lifetime Member of GABB. Prior to Transworld, Mr. Roman worked as a banker for 18 years, helping entrepreneurs obtain funding to acquire or grow their businesses. Mr. Roman has established, acquired, operated, and sold his own businesses for over 25 years. Since 2015, his agency has sold over 200 businesses and won numerous awards throughout the industry. He is also a CCIM (Certified Commercial Investment Member), a member of the Association of Corporate Growth (ACG), and a part of the National Association of Realtors (NAR). Mr. Roman lives in the city of Lawrenceville with his family, which includes his wife Laura, his two young children Ryan (17yrs old) and Emma (14yrs old), a German Shepard named Max, and a toy poodle named Sophie.
ANDREW GREELEY is a Business Advisor at Transworld Business Advisors of Lake Lanier and holds a Georgia Real Estate license. As a Business advisor, Mr. Greeley aims to develop a meaningful relationship with clients in order to understand their needs. He supports their dream of entrepreneurship and freedom by learning the intricate details of each business and discovering what stands them apart. Mr. Greeley also attended the University of North Georgia College of Business, where he learned how to be a better business owner and leader. He received several significant certifications while attending college in Adobe Premiere, Photoshop, Illustrator, and Dreamweaver.
BRIAN JUDSON is a Senior Business Broker for Best Business Brokers. Mr. Judson has been selling businesses in Savannah for more than a dozen years. He has consulted with hundreds of local business owners discussing growth and the value of the companies. Mr. Judson remains actively engaged with the Savannah Area Chamber, the Savannah Traffic Club, and the CFO Council. He won the 2021 Business Advocate of the Year from the Savannah Estate Planning Council and Buy Local Savannah. He was also nominated for the Savannah Chamber’s 2023 Small Business Advocate. Mr. Judson’s volunteer activities have included sitting on the Savannah Historic District Board of Review and becoming a Master Docent for the Telfair and Jepson Museums. Currently Mr. Judson mentors high school students in Gulfstream’s Student Leadership Program.
MICHAEL HORWITZ is a Business Broker with GABB and has been helping people buy and sell small and lower-middle businesses for over five years. His years of experiences run the gamut from senior management roles in Fortune 500 corporations to leadership positions with venture capital-backed high-tech enterprises. Mr. Horwitz also brings small business knowledge through his seven years of owning an independent bicycle shop. He has been in the North Atlanta area for over 25 years. Mr. Horwitz grew up in Cleveland, OH and received his undergraduate degree from Case Western Reserve University. After ten years in the workforce, he went back to receive his MBA from Capital University in Columbus, OH. Mr. Horwitz recently earned the Certified M&A Professional (CM&P) from the Coles College of Business at Kennesaw State University. He is an avid cyclist, kayaker, and backpacker.