Currently ranked: 23
Previously ranked: 20
Kenneth Marlin wrote in his 2016 book, The Marine Corps Way to Win on Wall Street, that “successful deals come about as a result of disciplined planning, preparation, and execution — not luck,” and he considers that a guiding principle of Marlin & Associates, the New York–based boutique investment bank he formed in 2002. He reflects, however, on how chance occurrences caused him to change a plan that would have put him on the 106th floor of the North Tower of the World Trade Center on the morning of September 11, 2001. His overall take on Marlin & Associates: “Deal values and trends are good. Our business remains strong. We’re happy. With luck I think it can continue for some time.”
Marlin’s firm had a flurry of transactions around the start of this year that led the managing partner to conclude that “B2B fintech is alive and thriving.” The firm advised Canada’s TMX Group on the sale of its Atrium communications infrastructure to Intercontinental Exchange; Quo Vadis, a supplier of data encryption technologies to the cybersecurity market, on its sale of a majority interest to WISeKey of Switzerland; and derivatives analytics provider OpenGamma on a strategic investment by Japan Exchange Group, Accel, NEX Group and its Opportunities fund, and Accel entrepreneur in residence Cristóbal Conde.
“These were incredibly complex situations involving clients with stakeholders and potential partners in multiple countries and many possible outcomes,” notes Marlin, who gained deal-making experience during his 30-year-plus career with Dun & Bradstreet and Veronis Suhler Stevenson.