Welcome to our June Newsletter.
Below find some thoughts on what differentiates “Best-in-Class” bankers, and then Michelle Mueller will share compliance updates and Zaya Bold will do so for banker collaboration.
To all of our success,
GT Securities, Inc.
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The Importance of Being Viewed as Best in Class
Being viewed as a “Best in Class” offers a whole host of awesome benefits.
For boutique bankers like us, as we are viewed like this, we naturally attract a higher class of clients at more favorable fee structures.
And in the low deal volume reality of our sector, this “high client class attraction” ability is probably the most important success factor of them all.
So what do Best-in-Class have and do?
To borrow a poker analogy, there are a few tells:
They Invest in High-Level Relationships. Last year a very wise and successful banker on our platform told me that the true cost of the pandemic lockdowns for our business would be felt this year, as almost two years of traditional relationship building – conferences, in-person meetings, business site visits, etc. were lost.
While for sure there are other reasons for the 2022 deal flow slow down, market, macro-economic and geopolitical uncertainty being the obvious ones, agency deal volume has decreased more than overall deal volume, and I believe this relationship “deficit” is a core reason why.
Let us not forget that relationship development was once what boutique investment banking was almost entirely about, but the past two years, where business was quite good despite not a lot of it going on, somewhat obscured this truism.
But with things now mostly back to normal, bankers that put the work in to build and maintain relationships with the “ecosystem” – referral sources like attorneys, accountants and wealth managers, financial partners (strategic, PC, VC, Family Office, etc.) and most importantly with high-level business operators with transactional potential will have profound and sustainable Best in Class advantage over those that don’t.
They Think ROI, not Cost. A true tell of a banker that most likely won’t be getting a lot of high-level deals done is when they are too focused on costs and expenses versus ROI and value.
This shows itself in how they interface with the broker-dealer – haggling on fee splits, complaining about regulatory fees, etc., with this “spendthrift persona” inevitably bleeding over into how prospective clients perceive them.
Bankers that think and act like this tend to attract clients that view professional investment banking services almost as a commodity – to be negotiated down to the lowest possible price and then to delay or contest payment on earned fees at each and every opportunity.
In contrast Best in Class bankers elevate client conversations to the higher plane of ROI and value.
They do this first with relationship credibility – via empathetic listening as to the unique circumstances and challenges of the particular business and its leadership and management.
Then with professional expertise in market, industry, competition, and perhaps most importantly, comparable transactions.
Because they build credibility and add value through this “consultative sales” process when they present their fee structure, it is generally accepted, and the conversation quickly returns to the company and to getting the deal done. How nice is that?
They Take the Long View. In a conversation last week with FINRA’s Head of Market Regulation for the investment banking sector(overseeing 1700+ firms), he mentioned that the Fourth Quarter of 2021 was the highest revenue quarter in the history of FINRA’s financial record-keeping, with many firms reporting quarterly revenues greater than that of the first nine months of 2021 combined!
After such a flurry of activity, this year’s slow deal start could be expected, but my sense is the deal “digestion” has worked its way through the market, and the remainder of 2022 will be strong.
But even if it isn’t, Best in Class bankers always take the long view.
They understand and respect their value-add in the entrepreneurial capitalistic system, are serious about their work, and know that if they are not getting better each and every day they are falling behind.
And so, even if a particular quarter or year is slow, in the long run, they always win.
So for those among us that are Best in Class now, kudos, and thank you for the inspiration and the role modeling!
And for those who desire to become so, it is never too late, and the rewards for doing so begin right upon start.
New Brokerage Account Review Automated System. The Firm is excited to announce that we have partnered with brokerage statement compliance provider My Compliance Office (MCO), a global regulatory technology company, to enhance the review of outside brokerage accounts per the requirements of FINRA Rule 3210.
Through MCO, all GT Securities Registered Persons will have self-serve access to securely add, remove, and update copies of brokerage account statements and trade confirmations.
Michelle Mueller, Compliance Manager
GT Securities Deal Press Releases. Two deals done on the GT Securities platform were featured in press releases.
Please see details on the Agro Logistics Systems’ M&A transaction here and on the Blue Whale Materials financing here. Exciting stuff!
Referrals. Do you know an investment banker looking for the benefits of independence and professionalism provided on the GT Securities platform?
We are always interested in speaking to highly ethical and credentialed banking professionals to join our platform, and starting in 2022 we are offering credits and bonus for referred bankers.
Please reach out to me at [email protected] to learn more.
Zaya Bold, Director of Banking Synergies
Happy June to All!