Forward Thinking

pavilion

FORWARD

THINKING

STRATEGIC SOLUTIONS TO

ACCELERATE YOUR SUCCESS


IT’S TIME TO INCREASE PERFORMANCE

AND MAXIMIZE ENTERPRISE VALUE

STRATEGIC SOLUTIONS TO ACCELERATE YOUR SUCCESS


WHAT’S INSIDE?

THE JOURNEY OF A BUSINESS OWNER

3

PART 1 - IS YOUR BUSINESS OPERATING EFFICIENTLY?

PART 2 - BUSINESS RISKS

PART 3 - BUSINESS REWARDS

5

7

9

PART 4 - VALUE ADDED

PART 5 - WHAT IS A STRATEGIC PLAN?

PART 6 - WORK SMARTER - NOT HARDER

PART 7 - TAKING CARE OF BUSINESS

11

13

15

17

PART 8 - CASE STUDY - ENVIROVAULT

OUR CLIENT EXPERIENCE

19

20

FIRSTBASE FACT SHEET

21

Copyright Firstbase 2016

STRATEGIC SOLUTIONS TO ACCELERATE YOUR SUCCESS

2


THE JOURNEY OF

Have a

family

Start a

business

Invest

in the

business

Build

a team of

employees

Grow the

business &

increase

enterprise

value

GENERATION 1

BUILDING A BUSINESS IS A JOURNEY

“A goal without a plan is

just a wish


- Antoine De Saint-Exupery

If you have invested your energy, time and life into

building and nurturing your business, the choices

you make regarding who you work with during each

stage of the business journey can make a significant

difference.

Strategic planning is essential to enable a successful

outcome. However, the fact remains that many

business owners receive bad advice from their “trusted

advisors” when it comes to business growth and

increasing their enterprise value.

This document provides specific information and ideas

that can increase your enterprise value by millions of

dollars.

“Nowadays people know the price of everything and the value of nothing.”

- Oscar Wilde

3 STRATEGIC SOLUTIONS TO ACCELERATE YOUR SUCCESS


A BUSINESS OWNER

Design

transition &

estate plans

Assign team

to transition

business

Transition

business

Decrease

business

involvement

Retirement

& freedom

NEW SHAREHOLDERS

Establish

a living and lasting legacy

FORWARD THINKING

A strategic plan is a road map to your financial future,

based on your goals, needs and risk tolerance to maximize

enterprise value.

Five steps to your strategic plan:

1. Understand your current circumstances and goals

2. Identify solutions designed to help you reach your goals

“Invest in the future, because that

is where you are going to spend the

rest of your life


- Habbeb Akande

3. Develop a strategy for discussion and confirmation

4. Implement your action plan

5. Review progress and monitor the changes needed for

success

“Be a yardstick of quality. Some people aren’t used to an

environment where excellence is expected.”

- Steve Jobs

STRATEGIC SOLUTIONS TO ACCELERATE YOUR SUCCESS

4


PART 1

IS YOUR BUSINESS OPERATING

EFFICIENTLY?

Your business is like a 4 cylinder car engine.

The cylinders are: Marketing, Sales, Operations, and Administration.

All organizations are facing increasing pressure for higher levels of productivity,

return on investment, shareholder value and other measures of performance.

Firstbase uses simple tools that help generate knowledge, develop

understanding, and identify an action plan to improve results.

MARKETING

SALES

• Does your marketing create demand?

• Does your marketing strategy use the best mediums?

• Are you reaching all your potential market sectors?

• Does your value proposition reflect your business?

• Do you have all the metrics in place to track and

measure each campaign?

• Are you tracking the engagement of each visitor to

your website?

• Does your marketing support your sales team

effectively?

• Are your marketing tactics informing and educating

your target audience?

• Does your marketing effort build and improve

relationship development?

• Is your business model turbo-charged or back-firing?

• Is your sales team effective?

• Have you built strategies for strategic account

planning and increasing your new business pipeline?

• Have you constructed a strategic team poised to

maximize success?

• Have you lead internal discovery sessions for

the purpose of value discovery, connection, and

co-creation?

• Do you manage and nurture key accounts once they

become clients?

• Do you identify needs from your customer’s

perspective; therefore strengthening your ability to

provide value?

• Do you get the best results possible from your sales

efforts?

“Many businesses don’t reach optimum performance, because of lack of

efficiency in one or several of these key cylinders”

- Greg Spafford

5 STRATEGIC SOLUTIONS TO ACCELERATE YOUR SUCCESS


PART 1

OPERATIONS

ADMIN

• Are you achieving optimum capacity?

• Does each department have budgets and

performance goals?

• Is your facility using the latest technology and

equipment?

• What metrics are in place to measure quality

control?

• Is your facility configured for increasing capacity

output?

• Are you attracting and generating higher margin

projects?

• Do you have a Human Resource strategy?

• Is your team motivated and engaged in the business?

• Do you track and manage your teams performance?

• Do you have monthly budgets and financial

reporting?

• Does your firm have an organizational chart and job

descriptions?

• Does each department have set goals and targets for

performance standards?

• Is there a program for monitoring and measuring

people in your organization?

• Do you have the right team members to drive and

contribute to your success?

Are your business batteries fully

charged or running flat?

STRATEGIC SOLUTIONS TO ACCELERATE YOUR SUCCESS

6


PART 2

BUSINESS RISKS

Business risks are very real and measureable.

To achieve long-term success, it is essential to pursue a responsible and

accountable approach to business.

Many businesses fail to achieve optimal enterprise value for a variety of reasons:

• Financial performance

• Marketing complacency

• Unskilled management team

When the business model is reactive versus proactive, the signs are visible; risks

are real and the outcome is a less profitable business that is under stress.

ARE YOU MANAGING CHANGE?

Complacency and failure to manage change results in

reduced profitability and diminished enterprise value.

If you are not managing change, some of the most

common warning signs are:

• Eroding gross margins

• Stalled sales levels that have reached a plateau

• Challenges entering new markets

• Disengaged staff and support team

• The sales team are “farmers” rather than “hunters”

Change

Management

Model

• Missed sales opportunities resulting in your

competition “eating your lunch”

• Lack of innovation and reduced productivity

• Reduced or poor brand recognition

• Increase in staff turnover

• Operations running at less than 70% capacity

• Financial cash flow challenges and increased risk

7 STRATEGIC SOLUTIONS TO ACCELERATE YOUR SUCCESS


PART 2

MANAGE CHANGE OR CHANGE WILL MANAGE YOU

1 5

Increase urgency - Develop a sense of

urgency around the need for change.

Urgency will spark the motivation to inspire

people to move and make objectives that are

real and relevant.

Empower action - Remove obstacles, enable

constructive feedback and encourage support

from leaders. Reward and recognize progress

and achievements.

2

Build the right team - Get the people in

place with the emotional commitment, and

the right mix of skills and experience.

6

Create short-term wins - Set goals that

are easy to achieve - in bite-size chunks and

manageable numbers of initiatives. Finish

current stages before starting new ones.

3

Create the vision for change - As a team,

establish a simple vision and strategy

focusing on aspects such as service and

efficiency.

7

Don’t let up - Foster and encourage ongoing

change though determination and persistence.

Report and celebrate achieved and future

milestones.

4

Communicating the vision - Talk about the

vision every chance you get; use it daily to

appeal and respond to people’s needs. Tie

everything back to the vision.

8

Make change stick - Reinforce the value

of successful change via recruitment and

promotion. Weave change into your culture.

“A business is only as good as the sum of its’ parts,

which means you can’t afford to have weak parts”

- Robert Heller

STRATEGIC SOLUTIONS TO ACCELERATE YOUR SUCCESS

8


PART 3

BUSINESS REWARDS

The Firstbase process will enable your business to develop a new strategy,

implement the action plan and increase Enterprise Value.

IMPROVE YOUR BOTTOM LINE

Here are some of the ways to help improve your

bottom line:

1

2

3

Market Research and Intelligence

– Evaluate new and existing market

channels to identify opportunities,

barriers and challenges.

Diagnostics - Analyze your sales, marketing,

administration and operations to identify

ways to improve your overall profitability.

Strategic Business Plan – Build and

compile an action orientated blueprint to

help your company “plan the work and work

the plan” for improved performance.

TURBO CHARGE YOUR BUSINESS

A strategic action plan will deliver results and

turbo-charge your business, resulting in:

• Increased sales and market share

• Improved value proposition and gross margins

• Increased visibility and brand equity

• Identification of profitable new sales channels

• Increased sales effectiveness

• Overhauled and improved processes and systems

• Increased EBITA (Earnings Before Interest Taxes

and Amortization)

4

Monitoring and Implementation

– Measure results and manage the metrics

to ensure your goals are achieved on budget

and on time.

5

Marketing Action Plan – Develop a

carefully planned strategy and action

plan to target your sales channels and

communicate your value proposition

message.

9 STRATEGIC SOLUTIONS TO ACCELERATE YOUR SUCCESS


PART 3

BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT DRIVEN

CHANGE

Business development potentially includes everything

involved with the quality of the business or the

organization.

Business development planning establishes the business

development aims, and then formulates a business

development strategy, which would comprise some or

all of the following methods of development.

• Sales development

• New product development

• New market development

• Business organization, shape, structure and process

development (eg. outsourcing, e-business, etc)

• Tools, equipment, plant, logistics and supply-chain

development

• People, management and communications

(capabilities and training) development

• Strategic partnerships and distribution routes / sales

channel development

• International development to overseas markets

• Acquisitions and disposals

Generally business development is both scientific and

subjective, based on the goals and objectives of the

business owners or CEO.

STRATEGIC SOLUTIONS TO ACCELERATE YOUR SUCCESS

10


PART 4

VALUE ADDED

HAVE YOU DIFFERENTIATED YOUR BUSINESS

FROM THE COMPETITION?

Many business owners don’t understand the importance of marketing. It’s

essential in today’s competitive marketplace. A decade ago, you might have had

5 or 10 competitors, either locally, nationally or internationally.

Today, you can hardly measure the number or even identify them. It could be

someone thousands of miles away with a website.

WHAT IS YOUR VALUE

PROPOSITION?

Who you are and what you represent are issues that

are critically important to your value proposition.

In developing and targeting a marketing strategy

– ask yourself specific questions:

4 Does your marketing resonate with your target

audience?

4 Does it reflect what your customers care about?

4 Are you tailoring messages to specific market

segments?

THE CRUCIAL ELEMENT IS

VALUE ADDED - NOT LOWEST PRICE

When you are in front of a customer

focusing on price there is someone

else saying the same thing and your

opportunity is gone. The outcome

is a race to the bottom; resulting in

lower margins or a lost sale.

4 How does your value proposition solve the needs

of your target market?

4 Does your brand clearly communicate and

convey the highest value you deliver?

4 Is your brand promise well understood and

executed within your organization?

4 Why will customers buy from you over your

competitors?

Many businesses enter the market and start to

look, smell and sound the same. They all market

themselves as better, making it hard for clients to see

any difference between offerings. Therefore, making

decisions based solely on price.

11 STRATEGIC SOLUTIONS TO ACCELERATE YOUR SUCCESS


PART 4

THE DEFINITION OF INSANITY IS

DOING THE SAME THING OVER

AGAIN, BUT EXPECTING DIFFERENT

RESULTS

In the current economy, there are business pressure

points from several different areas:

• Increased competition (off shore and domestic)

• Downward pressure on gross margins

• Shrinking or stalled sales volumes

• Staffing and recruitment

• Global economic uncertainty

• Challenges entering and developing new markets

• Key missed opportunities

Today’s new economy is radically different and is

unknown territory for a lot of business owners.

What can you do to manage this situation and bring

about positive change?

Most business owners know instinctively that

marketing is a key component to generate new

business leads and enquiries.

However, with little or no experience in this area, it

often results in wasting time and valuable resources.

IS YOUR BUSINESS USING

OUTDATED PRACTICES?

The majority of business owners fail to reach optimum

performance of their enterprises, primarily because

they rely on outdated means to communicate with their

prospects and customers.

The list of traditional and outdated practices used by

most business owners are:

• Word-of-mouth

• Referrals

• A basic or outdated website

• Trade shows

Often there is a lack of investment in spite of using

these methods, primarily because of the inability to

measure or manage the return on investment (ROI).

The result is an increased reluctance to invest in

marketing due to a lack of knowledge or information

on any alternative methods to generate new business

opportunities. The net result is a shrinking enterprise

value in the new economy.

STRATEGIC SOLUTIONS TO ACCELERATE YOUR SUCCESS

12


PART 5

WHAT IS A STRATEGIC PLAN?

A strategic plan outlines everything from your unique selling proposition to

the assets, skills and resources required.

Every business is different. As a result, there is no set format as to what your

plan should contain, yet most will include the following:

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

This is the opening section of your strategic plan,

describing what your business is and what it has

achieved.

BUSINESS OPPORTUNITIES,

PRODUCTS, AND SERVICES

DESCRIPTION

An outline of the industry background, as well as

the unique selling point of the product or service

you’re offering. This section should also detail

any trademarks, patents or design registrations

you hold.

MANAGEMENT TEAM AND

PERSONNEL

Outline the credentials of the people who

run the business, including the skill sets and

experiences of the team who are implementing

the plan.

OPERATIONS PLAN

This includes finer details of how your business

operates from day-to-day. Such as your business

premises, location, IT systems and how the

goods or services will be supplied or manufactured.

MARKETING AND SALES

STRATEGY

Your marketing strategy and the details of your

target market should be clearly identified. The

plan needs to specify the actions needed to

reach your chosen market channels.

FINANCIAL FORECASTS

Perhaps the most crucial section of your strategic

plan, state a detailed projection of the funds and

how much revenue you expect.

This includes:

• Sales forecast

• Cash flow statements

• Projected profits and losses

• Working capital requirements

13 STRATEGIC SOLUTIONS TO ACCELERATE YOUR SUCCESS


PART 5

PREPARING YOUR STRATEGIC PLAN

A strategic plan takes time and effort to prepare. It should be presented in a professional

manner, preferably as a bound document.

The plan defines your business, identifies your goals, and serves as your firm’s resume.

It helps you allocate resources properly, handle unforeseen complications, and make

strategic business decisions.

WHAT IS THE PURPOSE OF A

STRATEGIC PLAN?

A strategic plan is a road map for operating your

business and measuring progress along the way. It

serves the following purposes:

1. The Strategic Plan serves as a blueprint for the

direction and management of your business;

acting as a framework for strategic planning.

2. It helps you to identify your customers,

market area, value added pricing strategy and

competitive conditions.

3. The plan identifies the levels of financing or

investment required.

4. Encourages realism and commitment among

your personnel.

5. Shows the potential strengths and weaknesses,

as well as identifies ways to overcome

obstacles and reach your goals.

6. By committing your plans to paper, you are

able to manage and measure the business

performance.

PROCRASTINATION DOESN’T WORK

Despite the critical importance of a strategic plan,

many entrepreneurs drag their feet when it comes to

preparing a written document.

Owners argue that their marketplace changes too fast

for a strategic plan to be useful. More often they just

do not have the skills, experience or enough time.

The result is an underperforming business that fails to

achieve maximum shareholder value.

Just as a builder will not begin

construction without a blueprint,

business owners cannot manage the

change and growth without first laying

out a strategic plan.

The importance of a comprehensive, thoughtful

strategic plan cannot be over emphasized. Many

essential business components are dependent on it.

STRATEGIC SOLUTIONS TO ACCELERATE YOUR SUCCESS

14


PART 6

WORK SMARTER - NOT HARDER

Most business owners are working hard; not SMART.

Firstbase uncovers opportunities to drive engagement, as well as growth and

increased enterprise value.

The Firstbase process consists of a high-level review and assessment on

all operations to provide a scorecard report. This is then presented to

management on the SMART metrics.

Sustainable metric improvements require a continuous evolvement of the

methodology — a cycle that is never fully complete. Measurement and

metrics are critically important to this continuous cycle.

SMART GOALS

Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) are used by organizations to evaluate success

and implement the SMART approach by asking these questions:

S M A R T

SPECIFIC

MEASURABLE

AGREED

REALISTIC

TIMELY

Is your goal well

defined and clearly

understood by

everyone?

Can you track

your progress

towards the

goal?

Do both

employer and

employees agree

to the goals?

Can you achieve

the goal with

the resources

provided?

Will there be

enough time to

complete the

task?

BETTER BUSINESS DECISIONS

A Key Performance Indicator (KPI) is a measurable

value that demonstrates how effectively a company is

achieving key business objectives.

Organizations use KPIs to evaluate their success at

reaching goals and targets.

15 STRATEGIC SOLUTIONS TO ACCELERATE YOUR SUCCESS


PART 6

YOU CAN’T MANAGE

WHAT YOU CAN’T MEASURE

Effectively measuring, analyzing and improving

enterprise operations metrics is not as simple as it may

appear.

While there are certain metrics that work well for specific

job roles, it is often the case that there are multiple

combinations of metric indicators needed to ensure

that the larger business objective is being met.

TAKING CARE OF BUSINESS

There is much value in creating a culture that relies on

KPIs and metrics to measure organizational productivity

and accomplishments.

Define

Metrics can be applied to all key aspects of your

business enterprise, for example:

Review

Analyze

1. Manufacturing

2. Distribution

Key

Peformance

Indicators

3. Services Provided

4. Marketing

5. Sales

6. Human Resources

7. Financial Reports

The Firstbase team has extensive experience across

these key disciplines to provide the knowledge and

expertise to help improve your business efficiency.

Implement

Key points to consider:

• Designed with forethought,

• Defined accurately and clearly,

Solve

• Aligned with corporate goals and objectives,

• Quantifiable, measurable, achievable

• Evaluated consistently and modified where necessary

STRATEGIC SOLUTIONS TO ACCELERATE YOUR SUCCESS

16


PART 7

TAKING CARE OF BUSINESS

Every project we accept begins with deep discovery of not only the challenges

your organization is facing but WHY they are occurring.

After working with you and your team, we define clear objectives and

outcomes. Only then are strategies developed and executed to elevate your

business performance.

KEY REASONS WHY FIRSTBASE

STRATEGIES WORK

1

2

3

4

Deep research on what your ‘businessto-business’

or ‘business-to-consumer’

customers truly want from your

organization.

Business analytics articulate key points

to leverage your current infrastructure,

product and customer portfolios, and

marketing efforts.

Creation of the right practices needed

to elevate your business performance

— not just assign “best practices”.

Reorganizing your team so that “rain

makers” can focus on bringing in new

business and not just “managing the

current business”.

5

6

7

8

9

Geo-demographic targeting of profitable

niche and vertical markets.

Identifying your key markets and aligning

the organization to best serve them.

Developing comprehensive ROI programs

for your business.

Connecting your business close to your ideal

target customers.

Implementing and managing proactive

changes that increase your financial

performance and profitability.

17 STRATEGIC SOLUTIONS TO ACCELERATE YOUR SUCCESS


PART 7

ISN’T IT TIME TO TURBO CHARGE

YOUR BUSINESS PERFORMANCE?

With our collaborative approach and clarity of thought,

the Firstbase team of experienced consultants brings

fresh solutions to your specific and often unique issues.

• Clarification of a company’s Unique Value Promise

to reposition them distinctly in their markets.

• Identification of key market segments for a

manufacturing firm around the globe.

• Production of a full marketing strategy for

significant sustainable growth.

• Implementation of a new client development

program that brought over $30 million in quotes

within 90 days.

• Creation and design of messaging and branding

that communicates real added value to specific

target customers.

• Implementation of comprehensive Human

Resources strategies.

• Facilitation of transition planning and increase

enterprise value.

IT’S ALL ABOUT VALUE

Does your business have all its’ “Value Drivers” in

place to ensure maximum efficiency?

• Is your business firing on all four cylinders?

o Marketing

o Sales

o Operations

o Administration

• Is your business running efficiently?

• Is there stable and predictable cash flow?

• Is there reliable financial information?

• Is there customer diversity – key accounts (no more than

20% of sales)?

• Do you have human capital / quality of workforce / HR

Contracts?

• Is there growth potential for expansion?

• Is your facility and equipment in great condition?

• Is there product / service diversity?

• Are operating systems and procedures documented?

• Is your business development team –farmers or hunters?

• Is your EBITA increasing each year?

STRATEGIC SOLUTIONS TO ACCELERATE YOUR SUCCESS

18


PART 8

CASE STUDY - ENVIROVAULT

EnviroVault is a tank management solution and innovation company that has

revolutionized the above-ground storage tank industry.

EnviroVault engaged Firstbase to develop a strategic action plan and improve the

EBITA after sales levels had dropped significantly. The ultimate goal was to sell

the business within a five year timeline.

STRATEGY RESEARCH INFORMATION ACTION RESULTS

STEP 1: STRATEGY

STEP 4: ACTION

We developed a strategic plan that clearly identified

the targets in niche and vertical markets and goals

needed to move EnviroVault to the next level of

success.

STEP 2: RESEARCH

Firstbase researched the market channels and specific

sectors throughout Canada and USA. This included

a comprehensive review of competing technology

providers and market channels in each region and

state throughout North America.

STEP 3: INFORMATION

The Strategy and Research phase identified

thousands of target organizations which included:

• Engineering groups

• Government bodies

• Tank manufactures

• Petroleum producers

Firstbase compiled a database and then qualified

the correct contacts and decisions makers for the

action plan.

Firstbase assisted in the recruitment of a new General

Manager and implemented Human Resources systems

and procedures to ensure that the EnviroVault team

had the skills and talent needed.

Firstbase designed new messaging that articulated a

“value added” approach and communicated the

EnviroVault solutions.

STEP 5: RESULTS

Within the first year of engaging Firstbase,

EnviroVault’s sales and net income increased

significantly. Over the following 3 years, EnviroVault

surpassed projections and the EBITA increased

dramatically.

Our M&A business division at Pavilion prepared a

comprehensive information package for investors,

completed a Valuation and developed a marketing

strategy to reach potential buyers.

We implemented the marketing program and took

EnviroVault to market. After 8 months we had

attracted 132 interested bidders for purchasing the

business. There was strong competition from buyers

and as a result the final selling price increased.

The end result: EnviroVault sold for $7 Million

above their advisors valuation estimate.

19 STRATEGIC SOLUTIONS TO ACCELERATE YOUR SUCCESS


OUR CLIENT EXPERIENCE

The Firstbase team has decades of experience working with some of the leading brands around the globe.

If you would like to discover methods for increasing your enterprise value, we would be pleased to help.

“Wisdom cannot be imparted. Wisdom that a wise man

attempts to impart always sounds like foolishness to someone else...

Knowledge can be communicated, but not wisdom. One can find it,

live it, do wonders through it, but one cannot communicate and teach it.”

- Hermann Hesse

STRATEGIC SOLUTIONS TO ACCELERATE YOUR SUCCESS

20


FIRSTBASE FACT SHEET

OVERVIEW

Firstbase Services is an independent business advisory firm serving

small to mid-cap markets.

We provide specialized advice to management teams and privately

owned businesses.

Firstbase’s team of experts is comprised of Business Consultants,

Succession Planners, Valuation Experts and Marketing Specialists.

Our team provides advisory services in the areas of:

• Business growth strategies

• Raising capital

• Human resource services

• Branding programs

• Marketing strategies

• Corporate restructuring

• Business valuations

• Creative design & print

Firstbase specializes in working with clients with $2 million to

$500 million in annual revenue.

ADVANTAGES OF WORKING WITH A

FIRSTBASE ADVISOR

The advantages of working with Firstbase include:

• Access to objective advice, professional insight and

guidance

• A strategic partner that keeps your best interests in

mind throughout the process

• Market intelligence expertise in reaching local,

national and global sectors

• The ability to maximize enterprise value based on

decades of experience and track record

WE BUILD PARTNERSHIPS

We establish long-term relationships with our clients

while offering an all-encompassing approach to each

client’s specific business strategy and business needs.

It is through these strategic partnerships that we

become an extension of our clients’ enterprise and not

simply another vendor.

We work within a predefined annual budget and are

fully accountable for our performance.

HOW WE WORK

On every assignment, the Firstbase team will employ

clear communication, fresh thinking, actual guidance,

full execution and deployment.

When Firstbase accepts an assignment, we expect only

one thing, success for the client.

Phone: 1-800-758-2922 • Email: info@firstbase.ca

21 STRATEGIC SOLUTIONS TO ACCELERATE YOUR SUCCESS


With vision and imagination,

we will increase your enterprise value.

(Image of Firstbase’s reception area)

22 STRATEGIC SOLUTIONS TO ACCELERATE YOUR SUCCESS


Toll-free: 1.800.758.2922

STRAT EGY • RES EARCH • I NFORMAT I ON • A CTI ON • RES U L T S

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