Member Spotlight – How Bradley Smith turned mowing lawns into a dealmaking empire

Bradley Smith’s reputation as a deal maker in the US health and medicare sector stretches way beyond his home town of Fort Worth, Texas; across the US and into Latin America and Europe.

As managing director/partner of Vertess – an M&A specialist company focused on healthcare – Bradley has a first class pedigree in bespoke deals for each client. As well as finding the right M&A partners and structuring the funding side of the deals, Bradley puts an emphasis on old fashioned customer care. This means he does a lot of handholding, walking clients through the entire deal making process from day one.

This personal approach has helped Vertess gain such a reputation in the M&A healthcare market that much of the team’s work these days is based on referrals by clients. But then Bradley has been rolling up his sleeves and getting stuck in ever since he was a teenager. This entrepreneurial approach has ensured that Vertess remains relatively small and agile, while punching above its weight when it comes to deals.

“Yes, we do punch above our weight class,” Bradley admits. “Because of that we’re doing well; we have a lot of business and we’re even starting to grow a little bigger as a result – although growth is not really our strategy. We just want to provide the right kind of service for clients. ”

This service includes client handholding along with corporate deal making: “I think it’s hard to understate just how emotional and just how taxing the deal process is,” Bradley says. “Most clients have very little concept of how difficult it can be before they get into it. We try to forewarn them, but until they’ve been through it they have no idea how emotionally draining it’s going to be. And that’s where we step in.”

For Vertess, an average deal takes about nine months, although Bradley admits bigger deals have taken up to three years: “The larger ones take a lot of time and they’re extremely nuanced; much of what happens runs counter to market norms. You have to be aware of the intricacies of healthcare when doing these kind of deals.”

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Contributing Advisors