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Session A

Building an Acquisition Pipeline: Serial acquirers’ playbook for success

Presented By: RSM & Thompson Coburn Law

When you’re growing through numerous acquisitions, having a clear strategy of the types of companies you’re looking to buy and where to find them can mean the difference between growth and stagnation. Hear from a group of serial acquirers and advisors as they discuss how they built and work successful deal pipelines.


Chris Reid
Thompson Coburn LLP

Chris is a valued strategic partner to emerging companies and the institutions and individuals that invest in them. He serves as primary counsel to entrepreneurs and venture capital funds, including extensive work in the technology and life sciences sectors.

Chris provides reliable guidance at each stage of investment, and has led financings ranging from small seed equity rounds to equity financings in excess of $50 million.


Kyle Chapman
Managing Director
BW Forsyth Partners

Kyle is co-founder and a Managing Director of BW Forsyth Partners, founded in 2009 as Forsyth Capital Investors, the investment arm of multi-billion dollar global manufacturing and engineering consulting firm Barry-Wehmiller. In addition to pursuing new platforms for growth, Kyle serves as Chairman of two of BW Forsyth Partners’ operating companies, Baldwin Technology, Inc., and Engle Martin & Associates, Inc.

John Howe
Manna Pro Products LLC

John is CEO of Manna Pro Products, a $350 million pet care and nutrition company in Chesterfield, MO. Since John became CEO in 2008, Manna Pro has more than quadrupled its revenue, driven by strong organic growth and the completion of 15 acquisitions. John was recognized as an Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year in 2016. Manna Pro is owned by Morgan Stanley Capital Partners.

Amy Rudolph
Director, Transaction Advisory Services

Amy Rudolph leads RSM’s Transaction Advisory Services practice in St. Louis, providing financial due diligence services to private equity investors, corporate acquirers and lenders. She is experienced in a variety of industries and has been with RSM for thirteen years. For the last ten years, she has focused on buy- and sell-side transaction services, working with private equity firms acquiring platform companies, assisting strategic buyers with add-on acquisitions, and assisting in all phases of the sell-side process. Amy’s areas of expertise include financial due diligence, quality and sustainability of earnings, working capital analysis, carve-outs, and add-on acquisitions. Amy is a licensed CPA and leads RSM’s women’s network group in St. Louis.

Jay Schmelter
Managing Director
RiverVest Venture Partners

Jay is a managing director and co-founder of RiverVest. His focus is investing in the medical device sector. Drawing on his combination of operating, investment banking and venture capital experience, Jay works closely with entrepreneurs as a sounding board and mentor. Before co-founding RiverVest, Jay was with Crescendo Ventures, a global venture capital fund, where he led investments for the firm’s life science division. At Crescendo, Jay was involved with several portfolio companies and founded Salient Surgical Technologies, Inc.

Conference Location

1 S. Broadway
St.Louis, MO 63102
Tel: (314) 421-1776