Today, Bob Rolfe leaves his role as Tennessee’s economic development commissioner capping a tenure that lasted more than five years. Governor Bill Lee announced Rolfe’s departure on June 7. Rolfe’s last day in office was July 10, when he returned to the public sector, reclaiming his role as Managing Partner of West End Holdings, Inc., a Nashville-based private equity partnership that focuses on “special situation” companies seeking capital and leadership expertise.
Under Rolfe’s leadership, the city of Nashville’s made two of its largest jobs announcements in history: Oracle Corp. (NYSE: ORCL), which formally pledged close to 6,000 jobs to receive incentives for its future riverfront tech campus, and Amazon.com Inc., which is 60% of the way toward its target of 5,000 jobs at its downtown office towers. On the day Amazon announced in 2018, accounting giant EY also announced 600 jobs for Nashville.
Rolfe’s time as the state’s recruiting chief is capped by the securement of four of Greater Nashville’s five most significant business investments, including Oracle, Facebook’s data center complex in Gallatin, and electric vehicle and battery production at the General Motors Co. factory site in Spring Hill. In addition, Rolfe was instrumental in the recruitment of AllianceBernstein’s global headquarters from Manhattan.
Rolfe is a Nashville native and is an alum of Nashville’s former homegrown investment banking powerhouse J.C. Bradford & Co.
He was succeeded as commissioner by longtime entrepreneur and venture capital investor, Stuart McWhorter.
NASHVILLE, Tenn., July 17, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — American Hometown Publishing Inc. announced today it has been acquired by Nashville-based West End Holdings LLC, and will immediately begin seeking additional local media properties to add to its portfolio.
Founded in 2005, AHP currently owns and publishes community newspapers, websites and magazines in four states. In addition, AHP operates its own proprietary digital marketing services platform, Hometown Digital Solutions, which launched in 2016.
“Our investment strategy identifies stellar management teams and provides them with the financial resources and support required to take their business to the next level,” said Lyle Beasley, managing partner of West End Holdings. “We are excited to partner with an industry leader like Brad Dennison. He and his team are posting outstanding results while providing remarkable content, products and services to the communities they serve, and we look forward to their accelerated growth.”
Dennison is a former journalist who worked his way through the newspaper ranks to become a top business executive at GateHouse Media Inc. He departed in 2015 to become CEO of AHP and has led a sharp turnaround of the company’s revenues and profits.
“My vision was to blend the know-how of the large, publicly-traded newspaper conglomerates with a more patient, private setting where decisions can be made for the long haul, not just the current quarter,” Dennison said. “We now have a formula that’s fueling our business beyond expectations. The time is right for expansion and West End Holdings is the perfect partner for AHP’s next chapter. I’m very proud to be working alongside them.”
West End Holdings has earned a reputation as a management-friendly, operations-focused acquirer, primarily focused on technology-enabled services businesses. AHP represents West End Holdings’ first acquisition of a media business.
“AHP has positioned itself as a sanctuary for struggling independent newspaper owners who are looking for an exit, but care a great deal about how their community, and even their own legacy, will be served under new ownership,” Beasley said. “From our perspective, this is an industry in need of a positive, hopeful storyline, and we see AHP having almost unlimited growth opportunity.”
Industry veterans Clarissa Williams and Gregory McNutt will continue as AHP’s COO and CFO, respectively. Lyle Beasley will serve as Chairman, and Michael Petrak, an AHP director, will continue in an advisory role. Sherrard Roe Voigt Harbison PLC acted as legal advisor to West End Holdings. Miller & Martin PLLC served as legal advisor to the seller.
About American Hometown Publishing Inc.
Formed in 2005, AHP is an independent media company that operates newspapers, websites and magazines in Virginia, Tennessee, Florida and Oklahoma. In addition, AHP operates Hometown Digital Solutions, its proprietary digital marketing services platform.
About West End Holdings LLC
West End Holdings LLC is a special-situation private equity firm focused on acquiring non-strategic assets that are under-nourished from either a capital or leadership perspective. WEH solves problems for business owners by acquiring their under-performing assets, enabling them to re-focus their limited management attention and financial resources on their more profitable businesses.
FRANKLIN, Tenn., Feb. 14, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Medical Reimbursement of America (MRA) announced today that it has been acquired by Riverside Partners, a Boston-based private equity firm. Headquartered in Franklin, TN, MRA is a recognized leader in the rapidly growing field of specialty reimbursement services for hospital revenue cycle departments. MRA leverages proprietary technology to help hospitals and health systems resolve complex motor vehicle and workers’ compensation accident claims. Additionally, through its Payment Integrity division based in Ft. Lauderdale, FL, MRA provides underpayment identification and recovery services that ensure Medicare and Managed Care claims are paid accurately and fully.
“I could not be more excited about the future of MRA as a result of this investment by Riverside Partners,” said Bobby Rolfe, MRA’s CEO for the past 4 years. “Our team’s customer-first attitude is the cornerstone of our success, and Riverside Partners’ philosophy of empowering and supporting successful teams will enable each of our employees to continue their passion for serving our hospital customers.” In conjunction with the transaction, Mr. Rolfe and MRA President Lyle Beasley will remain involved with the company and continue their investment in MRA. Mr. Rolfe will serve as a consultant to MRA and Mr. Beasley will continue serving on the company’s board of directors.
Max Osofsky, General Partner at Riverside Partners, said, “We are extremely excited to add this industry leader to our portfolio and plan to invest in the company to accelerate its growth. With pressure on reimbursement levels accelerating from both government and managed care payers, hospital operating margins are under attack. MRA helps hospitals enhance billing compliance and improve financial performance in this difficult environment by focusing expert resources on often overlooked and undermanaged areas of the revenue cycle. Bobby and Lyle have built a strong, successful team at MRA, and we are excited to continue backing this team.”
Osofsky announced that Julie Klapstein, a member of Riverside Partners’ Healthcare Advisory Board and Founding CEO of Availity will serve as CEO of MRA. “Julie is a strong leader bringing more than 30 years of experience in senior healthcare positions. She has deep experience in the revenue cycle sector and is well positioned to take over the leadership of MRA. Among Julie’s many accomplishments, she built Availity from an idea into a leading provider of health information solutions, now serving over 900,000 hospitals, health plans and other care providers,” said Mr. Osofsky.
“MRA’s identification and collection of previously unidentified sources of revenue has solidified its value proposition for hospital CFOs,” said Ms. Klapstein. “I am proud to carry on serving a blue-chip customer base and look forward to working with Bobby and Lyle to support one of the most outstanding teams I have encountered in the revenue cycle sector.”
MRA’s Peer Reviewed by HFMA® solutions are the result of nearly 19 years of focus on specialty reimbursement niches, particularly accident-related medical claims. MRA’s proprietary technology platform enables an expert team of 250+ specialists to manage coordination of benefits and the related billing process, delivering improved financial performance, increased patient satisfaction, and enhanced billing compliance to leading health systems nationwide.
Choate Hall & Stewart acted as legal advisor to Riverside Partners in this transaction. Sherrard Roe Voigt Harbison acted as legal advisor to MRA, and Houlihan Lokey acted as the exclusive financial advisor to Medical Reimbursements of America.
Medical Reimbursements of America (MRA) provides specialty reimbursement solutions that identify and recover additional revenue for hospitals and health systems nationwide. MRA’s AcciClaim™ solution, led by the industry’s leading team of specialized attorneys, revenue cycle experts and account resolution specialists, delivers improved revenue, increased patient satisfaction, and enhanced billing compliance from complex claims related to motor vehicle accidents and workers’ compensation injuries. In addition, MRA’s Payment Integrity solution provides underpayment identification and recovery services from both Medicare and Managed Care claims. Founded in 1999 and based in Franklin, Tennessee, MRA proudly serves as a definitive source for specialty reimbursement services for more than 500 hospitals and health systems nationwide. For more information, please visit www.mraresults.com.
About Riverside Partners
Founded in 1989, Riverside Partners is a middle market private equity firm currently investing out of its fifth fund. The fund focuses on growth-oriented companies primarily in the healthcare and technology industries. Riverside Partners is particularly experienced at partnering with founders, owners and management teams and it brings substantial domain expertise and operating experience to its portfolio companies. Today, Riverside Partners manages about $850 million of equity capital and seeks to make investments in companies with revenues between $20 and $200 million and with $5-$25 million of EBITDA. For more information, please visit www.riversidepartners.com.