November 2011

Platinum turn cons inve

Case Study

Alternative to Liquidation: How Platinum helped a private equity fund realize value

Five years ago, a private equity fund invested in a company that was failing by 2011. At investment time, the company was valued at $10 million with the likelihood of substantial growth and increased profitability. Recession, technology changes and significant competition from larger, better capitalized competitors caused sales to slip to less than $5 million annually. Based on significant losses, the investors and officers decided to “throw in the towel” via liquidation. Platinum Group was retained to help assess liquidation strategies.


  • Previous efforts to sell or merge the company had failed.
  • The company had no EBITDA and had lost nearly $500,000 from operations in the past two years.
  • Regular investment bankers would not get involved due to limited EBITDA and a perceived lack of value.
  • The net value of the company from an orderly liquidation and auction would have been negligible. The investors had resigned themselves to a write-off.

Click here to read how Platinum helped a private equity fund realize value.

These Case Studies are written by the partners and members who are involved in each project. They cover multiple industries and company sizes.  Overall, they exemplify the value of identifying broad-spectrum issues and working through strategies and solutions that many can learn from and add value to their own businesses.


In the Community

Donna Gray Joins Nonprofit Board

Platinum Partner Donna Gray has recently joined the board of directors for Camp Dellwater, a non-profit, non-denominational Christian camp that ministers to people and their needs through a camp setting. Located northwest of Bemidji, Minnesota, Camp Dellwater is a host facility that provides a place for groups to conduct their own ministry programs for youth groups, kids camps, family reunions & camps, craft retreats and conferences.

"This is a wonderful opportunity for me to grow personally, as well as use my skills and experience to help this board grow in its business practices," says Donna. "I'm excited about all the changes taking place at the camp to offer more amenities to groups. And, having a personal connection with the camp's founders, I want to be involved in carrying forward their original vision — helping kids to find Christ."

For more information, visit


Lesson Learned

Leading From the Front

By Dave Schiebout

I've owned a specialty web equipment company since 1978; but I'll never forget the ownership lesson I learned in 2006 that taught me about true leadership. It was a job that had gone badly for six months. We were faced with an unknown situation in the plant environment. I honestly didn’t think we were going to be able to deliver. That’s when I left my office in Minnesota and went to the customer’s plant in California to work directly with our project coordinator, employees and the customer. After six weeks, the customer signed off on the new machine.

I was amazed at how my presence affected everyone involved. Just being there made the difference. It gave the project coordinator confidence that he wasn’t going it alone and took stress off of employees working out the problem. There was a lot of negotiation with the customer. It was a struggle for me as my office, family and social life were all in Minnesota. But it was worth it to stay even though the job went over bid by $500,000. Five years later, that same customer has repeated that machine order - twice!

Lesson learned: Leadership is leading from the front — not the back. That's how you solidify relationships, and develop a serving culture, with employees and customers. It’s easy to be good when things are going well; hard to step up with the difficult projects. The hardest part for me was to step out in front where I didn’t know the answers. Had I not done so, we would have lost face as well as our selling edge.

Dave Schiebout is owner of Delta Industrial Services, which offers 30 years of mechanical, electrical and software engineering experience in designing and building specialty web converting machines, packaging equipment, RFID, print finishing presses, custom automation machinery. He can be reached at


In the News

New REBOOTTM Program Designed to Refresh Organizations

Platinum Group announces a new program called REBOOTTM that helps leaders overcome business disruptions and rebuild confidence. Conducted at an off-site location, REBOOT is a two-day rebuilding program of interactive activities and processes designed for companies to:

  • Create awareness of personal and team dynamics
  • Explore fresh ways to break down barriers and work with others to increase productivity
  • Separate what is working from what is not
  • Establish or reaffirm business and personal values
  • Rebuild and articulate a strategic plan to go forward

Download the brochure for more information.

To assess the program’s applicability to your organization's situation, Platinum will conduct a public REBOOT workshop on November 30 - December 1 at Olympic Hills Golf Club in Eden Prairie.

The cost is $845 per person; $795 for 3 or more participants. Sign up for REBOOT online or call Donna at 952-829-5700.


Platinum Group
952.829.5700 • 9855 W 78th Street • Eden Prairie, MN 55344

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