Daily News: February 17, 2015

Mackinac Hires Zelek, Promotes Restructuring Veteran

Mackinac Partners announced that Todd J. Zelek joined the firm as a senior advisor and that Michael K. Brennan, a restructuring and business operations advisor, was promoted to managing director.

Zelek brings significant experience advising clients on M&A activities, capital raising and value enhancing strategy development to Mackinac Partners. He has more than 30 years of business experience as an operator, investor, director, financial advisor and investment banker across many industries. Zelek has held top level positions that include chairman and CEO of Cavitation Technologies, a global industrial technology company with a significant patent portfolio; outside director at AgFeed, a global hog production and agricultural firm; and investor and advisor for Affordable Residential Communities, Teton Club and Hamilton Pacific.

Zelek was also formerly an investment banker and a managing director, internet group head and co-head of the Los Angeles investment banking office for Lehman Brothers where he also headed the Internet Media and Services Group and led the Emerging Growth Company effort for small to midsized companies. Zelek also spent seven years at Salomon Brothers as a managing director in the Financial Institutions Group and head of the Thrift Industry practice, focusing on mergers and acquisitions and capital raising.

“We are extremely pleased to have an executive of Todd’s caliber and experience join our team,” said Jim Weissenborn, Mackinac Partners’ Co-founder and managing partner. “Todd has tremendous cross industry experience as a C-level operator, Board member, investor and advisor. He has a unique perspective and keen understanding on what is involved when helping public and private companies transform their businesses” Weissenborn added. “We look forward to integrating and leveraging his expertise in our practice.”

As chairman and CEO of Cavitation Technologies, Zelek negotiated marketing and technology agreements with two major European companies as well as arranging a significant long term funding commitment from one of its primary partners. As an outside director at AgFeed, Zelek led the board’s effort to restructure the Company which culminated in the successful sale of both the US and Chinese operations. Zelek also led the buyout group that acquired Hamilton Pacific, a financial services electronic security products and vaults provider, and after doubling revenue, the company was successfully sold to Swiss security company Securitas AG.

Mackinac also announced the promotion of Michael K. Brennan to the position of managing director. Brennan, a restructuring advisor who is also has unique retail and startup venture development experience, has been with the firm since 2004. He has more than 25 years of senior level management experience including positions as COO, SVP, and lead restructuring advisor for turnaround clients and public and private corporations. Brennan has been integral in many of the firm’s key restructuring projects as well as in M&A, and growth and venture development initiatives.

“From everyone at Mackinac Partners, our congratulation goes out to Mike and his entire family on this well-deserved promotion,” said Jim Weissenborn, Mackinac Partners’ co-founder and managing partner. “As we have continued to grow as a firm, Mike has been an integral part of helping to shepherd the company’s growth and development by providing the knowledge, leadership and expertise he has accumulated during his impressive career.”

Brennan has served in a number of key roles for the firm in recent years, including the restructuring and Chapter 11 sale of a privately owned developer and operator of luxury vacation ownership properties in the US and Mexico; management support in the restructuring and disposition of a distressed $700 million real estate development portfolio across 15 states; and franchise and restaurant operational and restructuring advisory services.

Prior to joining Mackinac Partners, Brennan operated his own retail consulting and advisory services practice. He was also a SVP of merchandising and marketing for Office Depot where he was responsible for $4.0 billion in annual revenues. Brennan began his career in 1986 with Office Depot as part of Office Club, a San Francisco based start-up office products company acquired by Office Depot in 1991.