In common with Matthew Harris of Bain Capital Ventures (No. 2), Kenneth Marlin draws lessons and inspiration from military history. The founder and managing partner of technology-focused investment banking boutique Marlin & Associates has put his philosophy into a book, The Marine Corps Way to Win on Wall Street, published August 30. He doesnt miss a chance to drive home the relevance of Marine principles, ranging from take the long view to luck is not a plan. He asserts: Theres a better way to run Wall Street. We advise CEOs and boards of directors and see businesses from a lot of different perspectives. Why cant people run businesses using some basic principles? All indications are that Marlins New Yorkbased firm has thrived on his principles: Since inception in 2002 it has advised on more than 200 transactions in 26 countries. Although it covers health care and other IT-driven sectors, the firm is particularly active in financial services. Were in the early phases of technology being a disrupter, and its not happening without some bumps, observes Marlin, a onetime Dun & Bradstreet and Veronis Suhler Stevenson deal maker. For one disruptive fintech client, market-data cloud company Xignite, Marlin & Associates served as strategic and financial adviser on a $20.5 million Series C financing in February, led by Nikkei Groups QUICK Corp. According to Marlin, Silicon Valleybased Xignite turned to his firm for its ability to help with a partnership arrangement to expand in Asia. In October, Marlin advised Phoenix-based payments software company BillingTree on a recapitalization with private equity firm Parthenon Capital Partners, eliciting a testimonial from BillingTree CEO Edgars Sturans: Marlin & Associates understood our industry, our company and the myriad of complex issues that must be navigated in order to complete a successful, strategic transaction. Besides payments an industry Marlin calls a spaghetti factory in need of simplification and rationalization he is focusing on big data and its potential for business and market intelligence. Its about sucking in massive amounts of data from internal and external sources, integrating the data and then trying to understand it, he says.
The 2016 Fintech Finance 35 Click below to view profiles