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2023 Year in Review: The RLH Perspective

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

In recognition of the rising influence of artificial intelligence on our lives, the content of this year-in-review letter was primarily generated by OpenAI's ChatGPT 3.5. We thank its inventors for their genius and we apologize to any creator of copyrighted content which may have been ingested by their large language model and used in some black box fashion in the creation of this letter. 😊 With that out of the way, let's look at some of the highlights from RLH’s 2023, a year of growth and achievement for our firm.

Welcoming Connors Group into Our Portfolio: In 2023, we expanded our portfolio by making a strategic investment in Connors Group. Connors Group is an innovative and rapidly growing middle-market company that provides specialized expertise at the intersection of productivity and employee satisfaction. Connors Group’s consultants help enterprise clients in the retail, distribution, manufacturing, and healthcare sectors design and implement innovative work processes. We're thrilled to partner with Connors Group's management team and believe that together, we can unlock new opportunities for growth and success. Read more here

Successful Exit from Shift7 Digital: One of the milestones of the year was our successful sale of Shift7 Digital to Merkle, a member of the Dentsu Group Inc. global family of marketing agencies with over 60,000 employees. Shift7 helps B2B companies such as manufacturers and distributors to modernize their marketing and sales process by optimizing customer touchpoints and delivering a seamless self-s

ervice ecommerce experience. This exit validates our commitment to identifying and nurturing promising companies, and we're excited to see what the future holds for Shift7 Digital under Merkle's stewardship. Read more here

Revamping Our Online Presence: In an ever-evolving digital landscape, we understand the importance of staying connected. That's why in 2023, we made a significant investment in revamping our firm's website. Our new online home reflects our differentiated approach to private equity investing and our proactive efforts to help build value in our portfolio companies. Please check out the new website here

Three-Peat: RLH was also honored by Inc. Business Media for the third consecutive year as a Founder-Friendly Investor, an award that, according to Inc., recognizes firms that “go the extra mile for their founder-partners”, “have positioned themselves as a firm who in-demand entrepreneurs can trust to take their business to the next level”, and “have a proven track record of helping founders outgrow the competition.” Read more here

Leadership: In November, we proudly announced that Rob Rodin has become the firm’s new Chief Executive Officer, succeeding RLH’s co-founder and Chair, Chris Lewis, in that position. Rob has been a member of the RLH team for over 15 years, serving as a Strategic Advisor since 2007, as a Managing Director since 2016, and as Vice Chair since 2021. Chris Lewis will continue to be fully engaged with RLH, focusing his responsibilities on the selection of, and Board service to, portfolio companies. We look forward to the exciting accomplishments that lie ahead under Rob’s leadership, which benefits from his experience working with well over a dozen RLH portfolio companies as well as his exceptional pre-RLH success as the CEO of Marshall Industries. Read more here

We look forward to welcoming more middle-market firms into our portfolio in 2024. Accordingly, we invite your referrals of entrepreneurial management teams that are building market-leading, high-growth, knowledge-based profitable businesses in the $30 – 150 million revenue range by capitalizing on long-term macro trends, especially those in technology.

As we look back on the past year, we want to express our gratitude to our investors and to the teams at our portfolio companies. Your trust and support have been instrumental in our success. 2023 was a year of significant portfolio achievement, including year-over-year growth in total revenue and total Adjusted EBITDA across our entire active portfolio of more than 12% and more than 45%, respectively.

We look forward to exploring new opportunities, nurturing growth, and creating value together in the upcoming months. Thank you for being a part of our journey, and we wish you a joyful and prosperous year ahead.


Team RLH

RLH Equity Partners Announces Expanded Role for Rob Rodin