Mason Myers leads Greybull Stewardship and he is responsible for all investment decisions. Mason founded Greybull Stewardship in 2010 as a business owner looking to build a portfolio of outstanding businesses and provide them a stable, long-term, and supportive owner.
Chief Operating Officer
Drew Sanders is responsible for the operational aspects of Greybull Stewardship and its portfolio companies. Drew has a 20 year background in professional services and most recently ran a management consultancy focused on leadership development and business process improvement. Drew also oversees the curation of the Greybull Network of Experts who assist our portfolio companies as they seek to grow.
A Partnership of Business Owners
Greybull Stewardship’s investors bring a blend of experience and knowledge, that help our portfolio businesses make the most of their opportunities. Our Investors are located throughout the nation and have varied but seasoned experience in all areas of business management and leadership.
Greybull Stewardship believes unique, well-managed companies are inspiring, positive examples, and a force for good in the world (especially for their customers, employees, vendors, and communities). We provide a perfect business investment partnership to these companies by providing support to our co-owners and a source of capital that allows companies to maintain their uniqueness.
When seeking capital or a co-owner, we suggest that business owners work diligently to find the right co-owner that is aligned with the goals and values of the company. Traditional Silicon Valley venture capital or Wall Street private equity is not the best fit for most companies in America. And, strategic buyers/investors often have their own goals that are not aligned with the company.
Our purpose is to build a perfect home for outstanding businesses. First, this means do no harm. To me, that means not forcing things upon a company that is contradictory to the goals, values and uniqueness of the company. Second, this means providing support as requested by our co-owners. We can help arrange financing. Help find a key hire to round-out a management team. Help with an operational challenge. Help with an accounting question. Pitch in on a strategy discussion. The key thing here is that we respond as requested by our co-owners.
To build a perfect home for unique businesses, we had to develop a unique legal structure for our fund called an “evergreen” fund. There are several unique things about our fund that are very different from traditional venture capital and private equity funds:
- Our fund has no expiration date. Most all funds have a 10-year fund life. This means that they need to invest their funds in years 1-5, grow those business investments as fast as possible, and exit all of them before the 10-year deadline. Of course, they can usually extend the deadline for a year or two if really necessary, but the clock is always ticking and the pressure never ceases on the managers of their portfolio companies. This scenario can work well for some businesses, but it is not ideal for the vast majority of high-quality companies.
- Our fund can invest in flow-through tax entities (primarily limited liability companies). Traditional venture capital and private equity funds must invest in C corporations because of constraints by the large institutional investors in most funds. The impact of this is that the companies in which they invest are driving toward a one-time exit event rather than distributing earnings along the way because of the tax inefficiency of distributions from a C corporation (double-tax). This strategy encourages companies to bet it all on fast growth and aim toward an “exit”. This is fine for some fast-growth, limited profit businesses. It is not ideal for many companies.
- Home runs and strike outs. With a ticking clock on their investment horizon and a tax structure that encourages one-time exits, the venture capital and private equity investors are motivated to swing for home runs. They do not mind a few strike outs if some of their business investments are home runs. For their co-owners, however, the risk of a strike out is not good. This is particularly true if the company is your life’s work and largest asset. The owner’s interest is not aligned with the Silicon Valley venture capitalists or the Wall Street private equity firms.
If you are a business owner who appreciates unique business opportunities and prefers a different strategy than the traditional fund structures and formulas, then you will love working with Greybull Stewardship.