Mike Creamer of the Black Walnut Group Interviewed

Welcome to Business Innovators Magazine…Please introduce yourself and a brief thumbnail sketch of your background.

MC: I am Mike Creamer and I have been a serial entrepreneur my entire life. After an undergraduate degree in business and 4 years serving in the Marine Corps my career started with my first company when I was 26 years old. I have been buying growing and selling companies ever since. I’ve owned manufacturing, construction, distribution, service, and financial companies. I’ve had companies that focused on local customers and companies that served international global clients. I’ve lived and worked both here in the US as well as overseas. I’ve had startup ups grow to multi million dollar successes. I’ve had to sell off failed companies for pennies on the dollar at great personal loss. I have experienced unbelievable business success and heart breaking business failures. I’ve won, lost it all on the pitch of a card and gotten up to win it all back. I am supported by a wonderful wife and we have two amazing daughters.

BI: What would you say is the area in business that you are most passionate about and why?

MC: Seeing people and business grow to their fullest potential. Because every business deserves continued success, and that success means seeing your business through to the end. Most business owners don’t ever consider the end until it is forced upon them for one reason or another. Any truly successful business owner will have a plan for an exit from his company. As a business owner you can fumble your way through it or you can find a guide that knows the territory. I’m the guide. I show people how to be more and achieve more.

BI: How are you different than your competitors?

MC: Three points.

One – if we take a client we guarantee we can increase the value of their company by about 25%.

Two – we guarantee our clients will receive a full price offer. Guaranteed.

Three – clients are overseen by me personally. There is very little a small business owner can experience that I have not experienced first hand. I’ve lived it. I don’t have to imagine our position and I don’t empathize with your plight. I know where you are and I sympathize because I am familiar with the ground you walk. The often thankless generally lonely road that business ownership can be. The gritty hunger in the belly that can only be filled by being a person of your own destiny. We are the engines of our own growth, the warriors hoisting the banner of personal achievement and the victors that enjoy the spoils. We are the small business owners. I bring this experience, the emotion and the raw energy to each engagement. I will work as hard for your success as my own because I gauge my success on yours. Your success is my success.

BI: Please tell me about any recent business accomplishments that you are most proud of and why?

MC:  I recently completed a company review, one of many, but this companies owner truly wanted to sell his company to someone that could take his organization and employees to the next level. Sure he wanted to make money on the sale and I was able to significantly drive his sale price up. But knowing that I was impacting every one of his employees and their families by ensuring the right buyer took the company to the next level is really awesome. This would have been possible without understanding the buyers perspective. Because I have bought so many companies I know what buyers are looking for. I know how to present companies to buyers so they see the true value.

BI: What Leadership qualities in Leaders do you most admire and why?

MC: Humility. We all fall and the greater we imagine that our success is solely based on ourselves the further and harder the fall. A leader, and I try to be this kind of leader, that surrounds himself with the right people and empowers them through training and support to be greater together, will have a committed team that stands with him when the rains come down and the floods come up. Humility dictates that success is enjoyed by all while defeat is borne by the leader.

BI: What has been a key element of your success?

MC: Putting fear in its proper place. Fear robs us of our joy. Fear is not danger, fear is a lie. Fear is promoted by the biggest liar of them all. Fear is the enemy. If God loves me, and He does, what do I have to fear? Nothing. So education, networking, risk taking, dreaming huge dreams, getting up after defeat, reaching for the stars, breaking out of the mold, recreating myself, letting go of stuff, and being open to success is only possible because I’ve mastered fear.

BI: What are some of business projects that you are currently working on that you are excited about and why?

MC: I’ve recently formalized a new company, The Black Walnut Group, to transform how business owners grow their companies beyond themselves. I focus on business owners that are currently selling or planning to sell their companies in the next year. The process is customized, quick and non intrusive typically taking about 4 weeks. It generally yields an increase in the value of a company by about 25%. We also provide a guarantee that the company will receive a full price offer. I expect The Black Walnut Group will change valuation enhancement for small businesses in the US.


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