Welcome to the “Show Me The Way” podcast with David Seitter

In this episode of “Show Me The Way,” Dave sits down with Joe Haydu, Former President of Versaflex, to discuss the selling of his business, not once, but twice. He reflects on the growth and trajectory of the business, both sales of the business, and his personal growth over that same time.

Ep. 7 — The Double Acquisition with Joe Haydu

Introducing Joe Haydu, Former President of Versaflex

Dave asks Joe to discuss his background, and how he got into the business of Versaflex

  • Joe mentions how he wanted to be entrepreneurial rather than pursue higher education
  • He says after a few ventures, he found a group of people that he started a business with back in 1994
  • Dave then asks Joe to take a step back and discuss more about the specific technology and why their company was able to sell to places like Pace Warehouse (now Costco)
  • Joe runs through the history of the the company and their growth over time, listing a few of the large projects they worked on
  • He also talks about some of the struggles of business ownership, up to the point of selling the company

Selling the Business, Twice!

Dave asks Joe when it came to his and his partners’ attention that it might be time to sell the business.

  • Joe says that the time to sell really started at the beginning, noting that the group was in it to make money and sell the business
  • He then discusses how reality set in as the company started growing before they were able to sell, and how he and his partners handled that
  • Joe says about 2009, some of the other partners who were older started to think about their exit strategy
  • He notes that as they were looking around for potential buyers, they tried to find outside help but weren’t able to find a good match
  • He recalls around 2015-2016, a private equity company approached the group to purchase the company
  • Joe then discusses some of the details around what this purchase meant for the company and for him personally

Dave discusses how many people struggle with the process of selling their business, as it often gives them a sense of purpose.

  • Furthering on this, he notes how Joe also seemed to be struggling with this when they met, but then found a way to move forward.
  • Joe discusses how over the course of two sales and multiple acquisitions, the business grew and there were decisions that were personally painful for him to make

Dave asks how much Joe had a handle in the second selling of the business.

  • Joe discusses how he didn’t feel comfortable as President of the business, as it had grown and changed so much
  • He talks about how he stepped down from that position to a lower one, and then realized it was time for him to be thinking about his personal exit from the business
  • After running some calculations, and discussions with his wife, Joe talks about his exit through the business

Personal Growth and Advice

Dave says that he would be interested to know Joe back when he started the business, and compare that to who he is today, understanding that Joe grew a lot over that time.

  • Joe discusses how the last few years became emotionally wrenching for him, which is what helped him realize it was time to sell the business
  • He gives some advice, noting that it requires being truly honest with yourself and understanding what your situation and what you are trying to achieve
  • Joe lists a few other things to consider such as ambition and ego that come into play, as well as outside factors that you have no control over

 

To reach out to Dave for advice or consultation, please visit www.davidseitter.com or email him at dseitter@spencerfane.com

 

Disclosure

This podcast is provided for educational purposes. It does not constitute legal advice and is not intended to establish an attorney-client relationship. The recommendations contained in this podcast are not necessarily appropriate for every individual or business. In determining the best course of action, business owners should consult with an attorney on their distinct circumstances.