Looking Back on 2019
Another year has flown by, and as I reflect on this past year, I know it could not have been possible without the dedication of our amazing professionals, clients and friends of the firm. For the past 19 years we have been working on some of the most exciting matters imaginable with many of the top lawyers and companies in the US, and though we've accomplished a lot, we're just getting started.
A year and half ago we took a major step and merged our special firm into B. Riley Financial. I am thrilled to say that the collaboration, corporate culture, and business ethic of our new partners has exceeded my personal expectations. We have found a wonderful place to grow and flourish. B. Riley recently released record financial results for Q3, and the future has never been brighter.
The firm continues to attract the best specialists in the field and we have grown our staff 20% over the past year. As a result, we have also added two practices to enhance our Bankruptcy & Restructuring and Forensic Accounting & Litigation Support service lines. In April, we added a group of fantastic healthcare consulting professionals to broaden and deepen our healthcare expertise. These professionals come to GlassRatner highly credentialed as Certified Coding Specialists (CCS), Certified in Healthcare Compliance (CHC), Certified Healthcare Internal Audit Professional (CHIAP), and Registered Nurse (RN) among other designations. The group has hit the ground running full speed and we expect this to continue through 2020. Restructuring and forensic accounting cases in the healthcare industry have become a major part of our practice and based on the number of recent engagements, I don't see this slowing.
This year we also welcomed back Wayne Weitz to co-lead our New York office with Tom Buck, and deepened our Texas presence with the addition of Scott Van Meter in Houston. These industry veterans are only some of the examples of our ongoing dedication to bringing together the best and most qualified team in our field.
More recently, we have added an econometrics practice to our D.C. office focused on providing in-depth analyses of issues relating to recovery matters, antitrust, competition, and class actions. More information on the Econometrics team is below.
As a whole, the firm continues to balance its work between its two core service areas of Bankruptcy/Restructuring and Forensic Accounting/Litigation Support. As an outgrowth of these practices, we are working more on valuation disputes arising from solvency cases, shareholder disputes, minority freeze out cases and other corporate valuation disputes. The firm also continues to grow its Due Diligence - Quality of Earnings practice. These types of transaction support services are growing, and we have differentiated ourselves as a valued partner to lenders, private equity investors and others in the deal business.
As we look towards 2020, we expect things to only get better and brighter for the firm. Thank you for your continued support. We sincerely appreciate our relationship with you, our valued clients, employees and friends.
Industry Insights: State of the Agriculture Sector
What will 2020 hold for the agriculture industry? Managing Director Brent King offers his insights into the current market and outlook for 2020. Continue reading below.
What is the current state of the agriculture industry - what areas are you seeing the most issues (restructuring, bankruptcy, etc.)?
Farm commodity prices are locked in a six-year trough that is taking a toll on the sector's financial health. Although the balance sheets of many farmers are healthy, some are very strained. A sudden drop in today's high land values would have a substantial impact on the balance sheet of all US farms and the banks that serve them. Farmers who heavily leveraged their operations in the last decade in order to expand or upgrade are struggling to service debt. The protein sector has earned stronger profits, but the dairy industry is slow to emerge from a four-year cycle of very low milk prices and dairy remains distressed.
Meet the Team: Econometrics Practice
GlassRatner is excited to announce the addition of Dr. Matthew Raiff and his team to the Econometrics practice in Arlington. This team has extensive experience in antitrust, competition and class action matters. See below for more information.
Melissa Scott Hosts Three Podcasts in American Health Lawyers Association's (AHLA) Speaking of Health Law Series
Senior Managing Director and Healthcare Advisory leader, Melissa Scott, hosted three podcasts as part of American Health Lawyers Association's (AHLA) "Speaking of Health Law" series. These podcasts touch on the legal and policy issues affecting the health care system. Topics included "Hot Topics in Fraud and Abuse", Innovative Collaborations", and "The Stark Reality".
Mike Issa and Marc Spizzirri Published in the Automotive Buy Sell Report
GlassRatner's Mike Issa and Marc Spizzirri were recently published in the Automotive Buy Sell Report for their article titled "Don't wait for a dealership's death spiral to act, but there are potential remedies if you do". Mike and Marc talk about how dealerships tend to avoid confronting a problem until it is in a death spiral. They offer some key points to address problems that usually appear at the first sign of trouble, such as cash shortages and lack of operating profits.
GlassRatner in the News
> Nick Welch Publishes Cannabis M&A Article in The Bridge
Managing Director Nick Welch published an article on cannabis and future consolidation
implications for the Bridge, by M&A Source. Nick delves into the current state of the market in
the U.S. and Canada, and potential merger opportunities down the road. Is the cannabis
industry already distressed? Click here to read the article.
> Boris Steffen Article on Credit Default Swaps Published in ABI Journal
Senior Managing Director Boris Steffen's article "The Evolution of CDS From Net-Short Debt
Activism to Manufactured Defaults" was recently published in the American Bankruptcy Institute
Journal. Boris provides an overview of credit default swaps (CDS) and discusses the actions
taken to implement a net-short debt strategy which fall into two categories: the "net-short debt
activist" approach, and the "manufactured default" approach. Click here to read the article.
> Seth Freeman Quoted in Global Restructuring Review Article on JIN Guidelines
Senior Managing Director Seth Freeman was recently quoted in an article published by the
Global Restructuring Review. The article titled "ABI, New York: Brazil and Argentina considering
JIN guidelines" explains what the Judicial Insolvency Network's (JIN) guidelines are and how
Brazil and Argentina will likely be the first Latin American countries to adopt the guidelines.
Seth speaks about how those working on cross-border cases often encounter cultural
differences. "We're really trained to be focused on process, but this is ultimately a person
business so even though you have protocols, regulations and codes, you're dealing with
people," he said. Click here to read the article.
> B. Riley Financial Reports Record Results for the Third Quarter of 2019
For the three-month period ending September 30, 2019, total revenues increased to $180.1
million compared to $99.7 million in revenues for the third quarter of 2018.
GlassRatner Advisory & Capital Group LLC ("GlassRatner") is a national multi-office specialty financial advisory services firm providing solutions to complex business problems and Board level agenda items. The Firm applies a unique mix of skill sets and experience to address matters of the utmost importance to an enterprise such as managing through a business crisis or bankruptcy, planning and executing a major acquisition or divestiture, pursuing a fraud investigation or corporate litigation, and other top level non-typical business challenges. GlassRatner has a national reputation in the area of Bankruptcy and Restructuring Advisory Services and Forensic Accounting and Litigation Support Services.
About B. Riley Financial
GlassRatner is excited to be a part of the B. Riley Financial ("B. Riley") family. B. Riley provides collaborative financial services and solutions tailored to fit the capital raising and financial advisory needs of public and private companies and high net worth individuals. The company operates through several wholly-owned subsidiaries, including B. Riley FBR, a full-service investment bank and institutional brokerage; Great American Group, a leading provider of asset disposition, appraisal, corporate advisory and valuation services; GlassRatner, a specialty financial advisory services and consulting firm; B. Riley Wealth Management, B. Riley Asset Management and B. Riley Alternatives, which offer investment management to institutional and high net worth investors; Great American Capital Partners, which originates and underwrites senior secured loans for asset-rich companies; and B. Riley Principal Investments, which invests in or acquires companies and assets with attractive return profiles.