February 13th at 1:30 PM

Chicago Chapter: February Food & Bev. Summit - Multiple Panels


Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP
161 North Clark Street
Amenities Center - 12th Floor
Chicago, Illinois, 60601


Ticket: $495
This event is free for Chicago Private Equity Chapter, Los Angeles Private Equity Chapter, Los Angeles Real Estate Chapter, NYC Private Equity Chapter, National Chapter, and Corporate members.

Time and Date

This event starts on February 13th at 1:30 PM.


Panel Topics:

  1. Private Equity Panel: Breaking it Down – Food & Beverage Subsectors with Highest Potential for Investor Return
  2. Investment Banking Panel: Best Practices for Driving F&B Valuation Growth in a High Multiple Market
  3. Executive Panel: The Future of Health and Safety Trends in the F&B Industry


1:30 PM – 2:00 PM: Registration
2:00 PM – 3:00 PM: PE Panel 
3:00 PM – 4:00 PM: IB Panel 
4:00 PM – 5:00 PM: Executive Panel 
5:00 PM – 7:00 PM: Cocktail Reception


PE Panel: Breaking it Down - Food & Beverage Subsectors with Highest Potential for Investor Return
Advancements in technology have created the perfect storm to eliminate barriers to entry for innovative disruptors in the Food and Beverage sector. While there is no doubt that consumers are demanding convenient, specialty and clean label products that deliver nutrition and functionality, we must ask ourselves why this is happening on a massive scale nowadays and how to capitalize on the different subsegments that are changing with the times. According to a recent McKinsey study, between $200 and $700 billion in revenues from traditional grocery retailers could shift to other formats and channels in the next few years. Retail is not dying, it is changing and the brands that are winning are the ones investing in their in-store experience and ecommerce initiatives. Underneath all the hype of technological disruption is actually a very simple, but powerful idea: companies are finally starting to understand their customers. With increasing competition for high-quality assets and the emergence of strategics who are now acquiring “smaller” companies for premium multiples, investors must decide what subsectors they can compete in and what companies they can add value to in order to realize favorable returns.

Brett Lilley, Executive Director at XMS Capital 

Daniel Mafrice, Managing Partner at Stallion Finance 
Ben Rudman, Partner at Charis Consumer Partners 
Matthew Prout, Managing Director at Falcon Investments

IB Panel Summary: Best Practices for Driving F&B Valuation Growth in a High Multiple Market
Food & Beverage is as hot as almost any segment of today’s M&A market. With the high and rising valuations, how do buyers position themselves to win an auction? Is it all about price? What should owners look for besides price? How are investment bankers advising their clients while managing multiple high bidders? What special characteristics of Food & Beverage are driving the high valuations and will they continue? Are there segments of Food & Beverage with lower valuations? Are there common causes and consequences for transactions that fail to close? Our panel of investment bankers will break down this Food & Beverage sellers market, provide insights, and offer advice on how to succeed as a seller and as a buyer.

Ed Moss, Partner at Hilltop Private Capital 

Jim Rolfe, Managing Director and Market Lead at CIBC Bank USA 
Doug McDonald, Managing Director at Armory Securities 
Robert Woolway, Managing Director at FocalPoint Partners 

Executive Panel Summary: The Future of Health and Safety Trends in the F&B Industry
Organic and clean-eating trends have changed the way consumers shop for food, causing business owners to find new ways to adapt and stay relevant in this continuously evolving landscape. In a market where a lack of transparency can be a deal-breaker for many food-shoppers, implementing new practices and staying on top has proven to be harder than ever before. Tune in to this panel to see what these executives think the future holds for health and safety trends in this industry and how they’re adapting to accommodate them.


Steve Sahara, Director at Stout 

Sunil Pande, Strategy and Decision Support - Global Food Sourcing at Walmart 
Courtney Tellefsen, Founder & CEO at The Produce Box 
Patrick Tannous, President & Co-founder at Tiesta Tea 
Tony Bombacino, Co-founder and CMO at Real Food Blends  


  • Opus Connect Members: No Charge
  • Non-Members (On or before February 8th): $395
  • Non-Members (On or after February 9th): $495

By Invitation Only 

Opus Connect is a membership-based organization. 
If you have any queries, please contact lena@opusconnect.com 
*Opus Connect adheres to a strict no cancellations, no refunds, no application of registration fees to future events policy. 
Qualified substitutions are accepted. To send a substitute, please notify lena@opusconnect.com 
**Opus Connect reserves the right to refuse entry to prospective attendees


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Brett Lilley
XMS Capital
Executive Director
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Ed Moss
Hilltop Private Capital
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Steve Sahara


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Courtney Tellefsen
The Produce Box
Founder & CEO
C4d657733e3518eb98a6a8e4cf9422018123fc0a medium
Daniel Mafrice
Stallion Finance
Managing Partner
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Doug McDonald
Armory Securities
Managing Director
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Jim Rolfe
Managing Director and Market Lead
A302457d25ef6602385c5eb9c3f76cd760eb29a9 medium
Matthew Prout
Falcon Investments
Managing Director
Cdcad9c64f0234b0e9cf162cf968eca0616a4e4f medium
Patrick Tannous
Tiesta Tea
President & Co-Founder
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Robert J. Woolway
FocalPoint Partners
Managing Director
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Sunil Pande
Walmart Inc.
Strategy and Decision Support - Global Food Sourcing
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Tony Bombacino
Real Food Blends
Co- Founder & CMO


February 13th
1:30 PM Afternoon Panels Registration
2:00 PM Private Equity Panel
3:00 PM Investment Banker Panel
4:00 PM Executive Panel
5:00 PM Cocktail Reception
7:00 PM End


Event Over
This event has concluded.