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  • LINEA RESOURCES

    Connecting | Ideas | Capital | Expertise

     

    Our Point of View

     

    … is that great enterprises are grown and sustained through the continuous pursuit of the Best Ideas, the dynamic deployment of the Smartest Capital and the steady development of the Strongest Team. These are the Core Resources of a great company.


    Our Mission

     

    … is to help owners whose wealth is concentrated in operating businesses refine and deploy the Core Resources needed to achieve their dreams for their business and their family and set the stage for the next chapter of their professional life.


    Our Approach

     

    ... is to partner with owners challenged by the need to Grow, Diversify, Capitalize, Manage or Monetize their most valuable asset — their business. 


    As a partner, we deliver value through our unique ability to:

    Explore the Best Ideas and Execute the Right Strategy

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    Understand the Inherent Risks and Mitigate the Potential Exposure

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    Determine the Needed Resources and Deploy the Smartest Capital

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    Assess the Core Talents and Build the Strongest Team

     

     

     

     

     

  • FOCUS

    Best Ideas

    Our diverse experiences across multiple industries, asset classes and markets provide us with an exceptional ability to make connections and generate ideas often unrecognized by others.

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    Strategic Options Development

    New Business Development

    Risk Mitigation Strategies

    Resource Repositioning

    Business Model Expansion

    Strategic Partnering

    Smartest Capital

    Our leadership at premier financial, investment and lending institutions has prepared us to lead capital formation projects of any scope, scale or degree of complexity.

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    Debt & Equity Financing

    Liquidity Options 

    Recapitalizations / Restructurings

    Mergers and Acquisitions

    Divestitures

    Structured Finance

    Strongest Team

    We collaborate and integrate with internal and external teams to help execute near-term business plans in pursuit of the long term objectives of the owner.

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    Team Assessment & Development

    Multi-Disciplinary Problem Solving

    Leadership Development

    Project Management

    Critical Review and Analysis

  • PARTNERS

    Skip Wyer

    Founding and Managing Partner

    Skip possesses a unique ability to make connections between people, concepts, information and ideas. He has made a career out of his ability to envision new opportunities, deploy rigorous analytics, and make lasting relationships in the development of new business activities.

    • Linea Capital
    • Varde Partners
    • Cargill eVentures
    • Cargill Financial
    • Piper Jaffray
    • AIRFUND Corp
    • Shawmut Bank

    Prior to starting Linea in 2009, Skip played an important business development role at Varde Partners, an $8.0 billion investment manager, as the manager of an alternative investment portfolio which he grew from $50 million to over $600 million by establishing long term strategic partnerships with a variety of operating partners in the US and Latin America.

     

    Earlier, while at Cargill, Incorporated, Skip started several successful new initiatives which resulted in his being named Cargill's first "Entrepreneur-in-Residence". Skip was a founding member of Cargill's eVentures Division, which was established to define and execute an investment strategy in ecommerce and electronic markets in the early 2000s. Earlier at Cargill, Skip established and managed Cargill’s Weather Risk Management business and a highly unique agriculture finance business he established in partnership with Cargill's Grain Division.

     

    Earlier in his career, Skip was a founding member of a new structured finance business at Piper Jaffray where he established new finance and investment structures and relationships involving asset securitizations and project financings. Skip spent the first 11 years of his career in the commercial aircraft leasing industry in Boston, Massachusetts, playing a variety of roles including international new business development, financial structuring and credit underwriting.

     

    Skip graduated from Middlebury College and completed a two-year commercial lending training program at Shawmut Bank in Boston.  Skip holds a Series 79 license.

     

    Ben Oehler

     Founding Partner

    Ben has an exceptional ability to assess a situation, see through the clutter and devise a best path to optimize resources and produce exceptional outcomes. He has a natural ability to lead and influence, guiding teams past obstacles and towards important goals.

    • Linea Capital
    • Bashaw Group
    • Waycrosse Inc
    • USBank Piper Jaffray
    • RBC Dain

    Ben has been a strategic advisor to Linea since 2009.  With the establishment of Linea Resources, Ben merged his consulting business, Bashaw Group, which he established in 2007, to focus exclusively on the business of Linea Resources.

     

    From 1999 to 2007, Ben served as President and Chief Executive Officer of Waycrosse, Inc., a financial advisory firm for the family owners of Cargill Incorporated. While at Waycrosse, Ben played a key role in two major growth initiatives for Cargill; the merger of Cargill’s fertilizer business into a public company which is now Mosaic, Inc., and the transformation of Cargill’s proprietary financial markets trading group into two major investment management companies, Black River Asset Management, LLC and CarVal Investors, LLC.

     

    Prior to joining Waycrosse, Ben was an investment banker for Piper Jaffray. By the time he left Piper Jaffray in 1999, he was group head for Piper’s Industrial Growth Team where he and Skip Wyer first worked together. Ben has also played a leadership role in a number of corporate buy-outs and venture stage companies, served on corporate and non-profit boards of directors, and has been involved in the creation and oversight of foundations and charitable organizations, as well as U.S. trusts and off shore entities.

     

    Ben is a graduate of the University of Minnesota College of Liberal Arts and has completed course work at the University of Minnesota Carlson School of Management with a concentration in finance. He has participated in the Stanford University Directors Forum and been a member of the Northern Trust Client Advisory Board. He is currently a director of Black Ridge Oil & Gas and the University of Minnesota Foundation Investment Advisor, Inc.

    Paul Ekholm

    Founding Partner

    Paul is a master at assimilating information and knowledge, producing and communicating insights and strategies, and advancing critical resource formation efforts. His positive worldview and generosity provides energy and enthusiasm to the efforts of high functioning teams.

    • Linea Capital
    • Presidium Asset Management
    • BankFirst and Marshall Bank
    • Marshall Investments
    • Miller & Schroeder

    Paul is a seasoned executive with 40 years of experience in the financial services industry as chief credit officer of both a national and a state-chartered community bank, as a founding executive and chief credit officer for a nation-wide commercial loan origination and servicing platform, a founding executive of a nation-wide distressed loan servicing and asset management company, as a distressed loan asset manager under contact to the FDIC and as a senior executive and manager of public finance at a private investment bank originating transactions nation-wide.

     

    Paul is also intimately familiar with the daily challenges and opportunities facing owners of private companies including growth objectives, innovation, production efficiencies, capitalization, shareholder control and transition issues via his family’s ownership of a large, private international manufacturing company with production facilities in Minnesota, South Dakota, Iowa, Mexico, Australia and Chile and sales worldwide.

     

    Immediately before joining Linea, Paul was engaged in acquisition of nonperforming loans and real estate properties in partnership with large institutional investors seeking distressed assets, which were then serviced or managed under third-party contracts with the loan servicing company.

     

    Paul began his investment banking career right out of St. Olaf College in 1976 and eventually became senior vice president and manager of the public finance group at Miller & Schroeder Financial, Inc. after specializing in financing of hospital, nursing and elderly housing facilities, multifamily apartment facilities, highly structured public facility bonds, securitization of residential home loans and multifamily apartment loans, and securing legislative authority for innovative financial tools and conservative derivative financing structures and to cities, counties and other governmental agencies. His more recent focus has been on commercial real estate finance, C&I loans, management of distressed loans and real estate properties, financial management for closely held family businesses and commercial banking.

    David Scouler

    Founding Partner

    David has an uncanny ability to see and develop the potential of people and teams. He quietly serves to coach, encourage, and achieve greatness by facilitating collective thinking, overcoming conflicts, and building pathways to personal and professional growth. He is a caring and genuine bridge builder and has a serving leadership style.

    • Linea Capital
    • Scouler & Company
    • Universal Safety Solution
    • Westwood Community Church
    • Born Information Services
    • Cambridge Technology
    • Computer Sciences Corp
    • IBM

    David has extensive leadership experience in a diverse set of consulting environments including corporate turnarounds and restructurings; organizational design and performance; strategy; and information technology adaptation and rollout.

     

    Though David began his career as a computer scientist at IBM and Computer Sciences Corporation, his passion has lead him to take on the unique challenges facing business management and ownership related to the development of highly productive leadership teams. David’s caring and compassionate leadership style, superb communication skills, and gifts as a strategic thinker have helped David develop an reputation for helping clients think well together when dealing with changing new realities, considering opportunities, and addressing challenges affecting their business.

     

    While at Scouler & Company he was the lead advisor and client executive manager for 10 restructuring engagements, several of which received national awards. In addition David served as Chief Technology advisor and held interim CIO responsibilities. At a fast growing church he served as Chief-of-Staff for 50 ministry professionals and developed overall strategic direction and the organizational model to support the high-growth and dynamic environment. At a regional Information Technology consulting company David was responsible to design and build a Supply Chain Management Practice. Similarly at a national technology consulting firm , managed the local office and had responsible for the P&L, business development and management of 20 professionals.

     

    During his 14 years at Computer Sciences Corporation David began as a Senior Consultant in the Financial Services Practice in Boston and became a Partner with responsibility for business development and client engagement delivery. Subsequently he moved to Minneapolis to lead the Diversified Industries Practice with primary responsibility for business development, client relationship management as well as P&L accountability.

    Tysann Forsman, CFA

    Senior Associate

    Tysann is a high-energy and focused professional who believes that success is not just about the outcome but also how it was achieved. She is known for exceptional analytical ability and problem solving skills. She excels when facing a new subject area and short timeframe. She is an accomplished and detail-oriented project manager and brings clarity and common sense to the forefront for clients as well as her colleagues.

     

    Prior to joining Linea in 2016, Tysann held a variety of roles at RBC Wealth Management. Starting in 2005 as a Brokerage Intern supporting the financial advisory team and was quickly promoted to a Registered Client Associate where she supported over 200 client relationships including corporate, high net worth individuals, retirement plans, non-profits and foundations.

     

    From 2009 through 2013 Tysann assumed the role of Investment Associate where she worked with the financial advisory team managing key client relationships and investments with $500 million in assets under management. She joined RBC Global Asset Management in 2013 as a fixed income analyst and trader on their institutional trading desk.

     

    Tysann graduated from the University of Minnesota’s Carlson School of Management and is a CFA Charterholder. She is talented musician and actively involved in the life of her community.

    Roberto Batalla

    Linea South

    Headquartered in San Jose, Costa Rica, Mr. Batalla is currently President of Grameen Bank in Costa Rica (Asociación Grameen de Costa Rica) and General Counsel for Oklahoma-based First Financial Network, the largest loan sale advisory firm in the world.

     

    Mr. Batalla and his family have extensive interests in the agribusiness sector throughout Latin America. Mr. Batalla has extensive involvement in Costa Rica and other Central American business communities and also has close ties to North American and European businesses.

    Before receiving his law degree in Costa Rica, Mr. Batalla graduated from high school in the United States and received his B.A. from the University of Oklahoma.

     

    Mr. Batalla is very active in the business community and serves on a number of local and international board of directors. His business experience in accordance with the legal knowledge has proven an invaluable asset to our clients.

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  • CASE STUDIES

    Case #1 - We helped the ten owners of a manufacturing business define their vision for the next generation, execute a plan to expand their business, recapitalize their balance sheet and set the stage for the next generation of family leadership. Our efforts resulted in the:

    • launch of new long-term strategy crafted by the next generation of family leadership 
    • engagement of new value-added directors
    • formation of $80 million of minority equity capital
    • formation of $60 million of bank debt
    • funding of a new $100 million greenfield processing plant
    • generation of $40 million of liquidity to shareholders

    Case #2 - We assisted a family business establish the long term goals of multiple owners. Working with ownership and partnering with management, we designed a dividend policy to provide liquidity to shareholders and developed options for the creation of long term value and liquidity. Considerations involved in this project included family legacy, divergent cash flow needs of shareholders and the business, and differing investment risk tolerance by differing shareholders.

    Case #3 - We are assisting a successful owner / entrepreneur prepare for his eventual exit from his two operating businesses. We've partnered with management to develop and execute a strategic plan which involves growth through acquisition for one business and the repositioning of resources and organic global growth for the second. Our strategy includes the reorganization of the overall business structure and the realignment of management by business segment. To date, our efforts have resulted in the:

    • completion of a strategy to minimize estate taxes
    • development of a business plan for each operating company
    • re-envisioning of the value-proposition of the business in light of global resource scarcity issues
    • introduction to potential new strategic partners related to global expansion plans 
    • bank financing for the successful acquisition of an operating company
    • financing of the acquisition of a second operating company (pending)

    Case #4 - We are assisting the owners of a 4th generation family agricultural producer consider and execute growth, diversification and risk mitigation options. To date, we have:

    • independently underwritten opportunities in their industry and markets driven by global trends and regulatory impacts as a test of their investment thesis
    • helped contemplate a single, sizable acquisition by determining capitalization options and impacts. We introduced private equity and insurance capital sources interested in participating and helped conclude the right strategy was a series of smaller acquisitions and incremental capacity growth which could be funded on a project finance basis with no equity dilution for the family. 
    • financed the acquisition of a new business which doubled production capacity and added significant EBITDA over the past two years.
    • established go-forward relationships with institutional capital (non-traditional lender and insurance company) and helped negotiate with a strategic off-take partner for a large scale greenfield project development that will break ground in 3Q2015 and again double the size of the operation.
    • continually participated in risk identification and mitigation strategies involving fixing existing floating rate debt, dealing with environmental issues and regulations while exploring new opportunities driven by emerging technologies that affect the agriculture industry.

    Case #5 - We originated and sponsored a large-scale distressed investment involving a partially completed but bankrupt 325+ acre mixed-use development. As sponsor, we:

    • negotiated and closed on the acquisition of REO land from four independent banks while simultaneously selling 18 acres to a school district and entering into new development and tax-increment financing agreements with the city
    • established and managed all relationships with the selling banks, school district, city staff and city officials
    • established a joint venture with a real estate developer to execute the physical post-acquisition development work
    • sourced investor capital to fund the acquisition and development work
    • helped manage lot and land sales in this now-thriving community

     

  • CONNECT

    Best Ideas | Smartest Capital | Strongest Team

     

    If your business is challenged by the need to grow or diversify or if you sense an unfolding risk or transition that you’re not prepared to handle alone, perhaps a conversation with Linea Resources would be of value.

     

    Linea Resources

    339 Second Street

    Excelsior, Minnesota 55331

    612.460.1844

    info@linearesource.com

     

    Skip Wyer | 612.281.1313 | swyer@linearesources.com

    Ben Oehler | 612.845.6504 | boehler@linearesources.com

    Paul Ekholm | 612.581.5377 | pekholm@linearesources.com

    David Scouler | 952.484.6325 | dscouler@linearesources.com

    Tysann Forsman | 320.282.9316 | tforsman@linearesources.com

    Roberto Batalla | +506 2276 8220 | rbatalla@linearesources.com