Philosophy and Approach
Wingate’s philosophy has several unique attributes:
Operating and Strategic Focus
We believe that most equity value is created after the transaction closes, through superior operational and strategic execution. Typically, this perspective aligns with management’s viewpoint and creates a solid framework for a partnership between management and Wingate.
Focus on Fewer Portfolio Companies
Our approach is to acquire one to two new companies per year and to focus resources to make each a success, rather than executing many deals for a “broad portfolio” effect. This focused approach allows Wingate’s professionals to be involved with a select number of portfolio companies at any one time, thereby increasing our ability to contribute to the success of the business.
We believe that building an enduring/exceptional company through superior operational and strategic execution requires time. Our hold period reflects this philosophy, averaging approximately six years. In some cases, we have held investments up to 10 years. Generally, our investments follow two phases. The first is a phase focused on achieving operational excellence. The second phase is focused on growth, both organic growth and growth through acquisition.
Prior to closing, Wingate adds value to the transaction process through its ability to conduct detailed “roll-up-the-sleeves” due diligence for complex or difficult transactions. The consulting and operating backgrounds of Wingate’s professionals allow us to rapidly assess situations with a “story” and to successfully complete deals where others cannot.
After closing, Wingate’s role is to facilitate a process for the portfolio company’s management to be successful. While the exact approach differs somewhat by company, typical elements of our post deal approach include:
- Developing attractive equity incentive programs for management.
- Recruiting strong outside boards with experience relevant to the company.
- Working with management to develop and execute strategic and operating plans.