Tribute to the winners of the Dealmakers of the Year 2023 award

Hundreds of millions of dollars have been funneled to the winners of the 2023 Smart Business Dealmakers Dealmaker of the Year Awards. But fundraising isn’t all this year’s entrepreneur class has been up to. They also grew their businesses organically, acquired businesses, sold their stakes to accelerate their growth or pass on their legacy to the next generation.

Next Thursday, June 1, we’ll be celebrating their accomplishments at the Cleveland Smart Business Dealmakers Conference, taking place at the Hilton Cleveland Downtown. We spotlight this incredible group of winners and the deals they have engaged in, as they represent a wide range of dealmakers and deals from this region, together delivering a strong picture of the North East business community. ‘Ohio. Here’s who takes home the honors this year:

Dr. Afif Ghanoum is CEO of BIOHM Health LLC, a developer of probiotic products and assays for the health and wellness industries. Dr. Ghannoum is a leading microbiome researcher and credited for naming the mycobiome. He is among the top 0.5% of microbiologists – and the top 2% of scientists across all disciplines – with over 500 articles and works cited over 30,000 times.

His venture $7.5 million in equity financing in January, which will allow BIOHM to continue to lead as a cutting-edge, data-driven microbiome innovation partner for consumers, physicians and businesses in foods, beverages and dietary supplements.

Faris Ghawi is co-founder and CEO of Vytalize Health, an at-risk provider enablement platform that solves the healthcare industry’s toughest challenges through its value-based, industry-leading care delivery system. With the co-founder and the chief medical officer Bitter Alnajarand Marketing Director Matt Buder Shapirothe company closed a $100 million Series C less than a year after completing its $50 million Series B, further accelerating the company’s mission to accelerate the transition to value-based care for the patients taking care of the doctors who take care of us.

Marc Woodka is CEO of OnShift, a developer of cloud-based human capital management software to solve workforce challenges for post-acute and long-term care facilities. Work with the CFO mike richthe company raised an undisclosed amount of growth capital from ShiftKey on June 21, 2022.

Gulam Khan is CEO of Centerline Biomedical. The private medical technology company has closed a $33 million Series B equity financing that is expected to propel the company into new surgical applications, accelerate commercial sales and enrich its growing clinical evidence repository.

Andrew Hurst is CEO of Delivered, Inc., a nationwide, technology-enabled, end-to-end package delivery service provider designed to enable flexible delivery capacity to meet demand. The company recently raised a new round of venture capital funding after raising seed funding on March 1, 2022.

Kevin Connor is CEO of Mason Structural Steel, LLC, a seller of residential and commercial building products. After acquiring the company in June 2022, the company has seen months of record EBITDA and plans to grow organically and through acquisition.

Cleveland Kitchen Co-Founders Drew Anderson, Luke Visnic and Mac Anderson recently received $3 million in debt funding and raised a Series A of $19 million, bringing the pre-money valuation of the grower and culinary food platform to $40 million.

Stephen McHaleCEO of UnifyWork, a developer of a fair hiring technology platform to transform the experience for employers and job seekers, has raised $4.5 million in preferred stock and has a new approach to attracting talents.

Fred DiSanto, Chairman and CEO of Ancora, a multi-vertical company specializing in private wealth management, asset management, retirement plans and insurance solutions, recently acquired the local multi-risk and health insurance agency Alpha Insurance Group. In 2021, Ancora completed the sale of its business to Focus Financial Partners, LLC, brokering an agreement that allows Ancora to continue to maintain an independent brand and be managed by its employees while having access to resources that can fuel the future growth.

Sacha PolakoffCEO and President of North American Kitchen Solutions, a designer, manufacturer and supplier of custom-built and commercial ventilation systems to serve the foodservice industry, was acquired by Valesco Industries and Centerfield Capital Partners via an LBO in November 2022 for an undisclosed amount.

Mitch Kroll, co-founder and CEO of Findaway, a global leader in audiobook technology and distribution, was acquired by Spotify in June 2022 for an undisclosed amount. The acquisition accelerates Spotify’s presence in the audiobook space and will help accelerate innovation and bring audiobooks to Spotify’s hundreds of millions of existing listeners.

Technical Assurance, Inc., led by Ed Taylor, Jim SoletherAnd Kurtis Taylor recently decided to continue his company’s legacy by selling to an ESOP. The developer of sustainable investment plans with clients who proactively manages the life cycle of assets, explored several exit options, including strategic and private equity, but ultimately decided he wanted to take care employees who took care of him for so many years. years.

Matthew Bahnij, Managing partner of Praetorian Holdings Group, a private equity firm focused on investments in the energy and industrial sectors, started with no experience or money to decommission wind turbines. Four years later, he decommissioned 10,000 pieces of wind turbines, making millions of dollars in profit, which helped in the purchase of a strategic business.

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