We would get lost in the shuffle at a big firm, and PEF recognized that we wanted to be active and grow together.”
John Bingaman, Co-Founder, Iron Creek Partners

Client Background

Iron Creek Partners LLC was founded in 2009 by John Bingaman and Matthew Harney as a sector focused, stage-independent private investment firm. Iron Creek Partners targets investments in business services, software and communications companies with enterprise values up to $50 million. Iron Creek partners with strong management teams to add value to businesses seeking to grow and expand. It leverages its network of relationships and its knowledge of target sectors to accelerate growth and improve operations.

Situation

Shortly after launching the firm, Iron Creek Partners closed its first major investment deal. This accomplishment provided validation to the firm’s mission to help targeted businesses accelerate growth, and as a result of this early success, Iron Creek Partners limited staff was intensely focused on seeking additional investments.

In-house bookkeeping was not an option,” said Bingaman. “We could provide better service to our investors if we were focused on finding investments and adding value to them, while letting other skilled professionals help us with bookeeping and financial reporting.”

Solution

Iron Creek Partners began the search for a reputable resource that could handle all financial and tax reporting for the company’s investments, and after evaluating several options, they decided to partner with PEF.

“We have relationships with many SBICs, so we’re familiar with that market. We liked the fact that PEF Services had partnered with many SBICs and their excellent reputation preceded them,” said Bingaman. He also noted that Iron Creek Partners welcomed the individual attention that PEF offered.

“We would get lost in the shuffle at a big firm, and PEF recognized that we wanted to be active and grow together.”

As part of the onboarding process, the PEF team studied the specific needs of the Iron Creek Partners team and made a series of recommendations that would enable the firm to streamline its services and be well positioned for future expansion.

Results

Iron Creek Partners communicated to investors that PEF would provide them with the required expertise in private fund administration and reporting. Knowing that fund administration would be properly conducted from the beginning gave investors peace of mind.

PEF brought fully-trained, certified industry experts to the Iron Creek Partners team. The team also developed custom-documented processes for their reporting needs, using the most targeted technology available.

Because Iron Creek entered the market during a volatile period for private equity, it was vital for them to assure their investors that they had the knowledge and experience to handle growth and take advantage of opportunities in the future. PEF enabled Iron Creek to demonstrate the required level of expertise and inspire investor confidence.

“They have proven to be valuable counsel on a whole range of opportunities apart from just a purely administrative function,” said Bingaman. “We have a number of responsibilities to our investors, and financial and tax reporting is at the core. If we’re not doing the fundamentals properly, it’s hard to convince investors that we are creating value.”

Over the course of their relationship, PEF has proactively helped Iron Creek structure new investment opportunities, identify effective tax solutions, and position themselves for future growth. By providing operational strength, consistency, and support, PEF enabled Iron Creek to focus on increasing the value of their investments, including recruiting, planning, acquisition sourcing, referrals, and other strategic tasks.

“PEF understood our need for flexible, customized solutions, and now we are poised to be active and grow together,” said Bingaman.

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