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Session F

Buyer Considerations in a Changing Market

Presented By: Brown & Brown / von Briesen & Roper, s.c.

Forget what you thought you knew about buy-side transactions. It’s a brave new world for anyone thinking about making acquisitions. Join a panel of veteran dealmakers as they pore over new areas for consideration in this economic climate, including heightened due diligence requirements from both buyers and lenders.


Rebecca Dreier
Account Executive
Brown & Brown

Becky Dreier is an account executive and member of the transactional risk team at Brown & Brown. She works with strategic acquirers and private equity groups to negotiate and secure representations and warranties insurance for transactions of all sizes.

Prior to joining Brown & Brown, Becky was a practicing attorney for nine years, including seven years as in-house legal counsel for a Wisconsin-based manufacturing company.


Rich Ballenger
C R Industries, LLC

Rich Ballenger is the owner of C R Industries, a metal fabricator in Cudahy, Wisconsin. He acquired the company in August 2022 after a five month search to find a single business to buy and operate. Prior to that he spent ten years with Steel Partners (NYSE: SPLP), most recently as President of Lucas Milhaupt, a wholly owned subsidiary of SPLP.

David Bauer
Chief Investment Officer
Lubar & Co.

Dave is a partner and Chief Investment Officer with Lubar & Co., a Milwaukee based single family office, since 2005. He is involved in the private equity activities of the firm and is on the board or working closely with the portfolio of companies including American Pasteurization, Chem Design, Shared Imaging, Lake Express, Erdman, Drilltec, Rockland Industrial Products, Wrightwood Financial, Ixonia Bank, Zero Zone as well as the firms real-estate investment holdings.

He also serves on the board of Star Gas (Ticker:SGU). Prior to this, he was the Chief Financial Officer for Facilitator Capital Fund, a Wisconsin-based Small Business Investment Company. He started his career with Arthur Andersen where he led the Wisconsin transaction advisory services practice. Mr. Bauer received a Master of Business Administration degree from Marquette University in 2005 and a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting in 1991. He is a Certified Public Accountant and a member of the Wisconsin Institute of CPA's and the American Institute of CPA's.

In addition, Mr. Bauer is actively involved with several local charitable organizations including the Milwaukee Art Museum, the Sisters of the Divine Savior, and is an adjunct professor of corporate finance at Marquette University in their Executive MBA program. He has two children and resides in Waukesha, WI with his wife, Heidi.

Steven Szymanski
Attorney and Co-Chair, Corporate and Mergers and Acquisitions Sections
von Briesen & Roper, s.c.

Steve is co-chair of von Briesen’s Mergers and Acquisitions Section. He regularly represents buyers, sellers and financial institutions in mergers and acquisitions transactions, and small and middle market businesses in their general corporate and business planning needs. Steve draws upon his knowledge of tax, finance and the law to assist clients in finding creative and practical solution to their legal and business opportunities and challenges.

Damon Thome
Mason Wells

As a Director of Mason Wells Buyout Funds, Mr. Thome is primarily responsible for supporting the funds' investment activities.  In this capacity, Mr. Thome is responsible for initiating investment opportunities, conducting due diligence, negotiating debt financings, serving on the Board of Directors of portfolio companies, and working with portfolio company management teams. 

Prior to joining Mason Wells in 2012, Mr. Thome worked as an Investment Banking Analyst at Piper Jaffray in Minneapolis where he was involved in numerous mergers & acquisitions, advisory and capital markets transactions in the industrial sector. 

Conference Location

758 N Broadway
Milwaukee, WI 53202
Tel: (414) 273-5080