On Thursday, March 31, 2016, ACG National Capital will sponsor its 22nd annual Mid-Atlantic Growth Conference, which brings together senior business leaders, investors and service providers from across the east coast to network and to discuss business best practices, and how to improve and grow their enterprises.

In anticipation of this exciting annual event, Corporate Growth, Capital Style will be publishing a series of interviews with the speakers, attendees and organizers of the conference.

In our first interview, we spoke with Carl Grant, a longstanding member of ACG National Capital and frequent attendee of the Mid-Atlantic Growth Conference. In our second interview in the series, we interviewed Chuck Carr, an audit partner and the Washington Metro technology and life sciences industry practices leader at RSM US LLP (RSM).

During our discussion with Chuck, he discussed corporate growth in the National Capital region in 2015, what drove growth in the technology and life sciences sector, and what business leaders can expect from the Technology showcase at the 2016 ACG Mid-Atlantic Growth Conference. Here is what he had to say:

CGCS: Can you tell our readers a little about yourself, RSM, and what your roles and responsibilities are?

Chuck Carr: I’m an audit partner at RSM, which is a professional services firm providing audit, tax, and consulting services with a focus on the middle market. I also lead the Washington metro offices technology and life sciences industry practice.

As part of my responsibilities, I oversee the audit services provided to my clients as well as the overall relationship with our clients. As the leader of the life science and technology practice, I focus on serving our existing clients and actively growing that practice by bringing in new clients and also recruiting professionals to serve those clients.

CGCS: Was there significant merger and acquisition activity in 2015? What may have driven this? Which technology sectors drew the most interest from companies looking to make an acquisition? Why?

Chuck Carr: Yes, 2015 was a good year for M&A activity, especially as it relates to private equity acquisition activity, which continued to remain at a high level for our local economy.

Broadly speaking, the technology sector was a beneficiary of this activity. It certainly was  strong in comparison to the M&A activity of other industry sectors.

From an M&A perspective there certainly was, and I expect will continue to be, a high level of equity investment in both healthcare IT , data analytics, and cybersecurity. Because of the high-profile breaches that have occurred in the government and the commercial sector, there are significant opportunities for companies to provide tools and solutions in those sectors, which is driving significant growth.

CGCS: How is the health IT and life science market? Do you anticipate any major growth activity in Health IT and Life Science?

Chuck Carr: Both the healthcare IT and life science sectors were definitely strong during 2015. These sectors appeared to grow during 2015 in comparison to prior years and I expect that both sectors will continue to grow during 2016.

I also expect 2016 to bring opportunities for companies that focus on bringing cybersecurity and data analytics solutions to the healthcare sector.  The existence of electronic health records and the privacy concerns with respect to such records should present significant opportunities for cybersecurity companies with tools and solutions in this area.
CGCS: Why do you attend the annual ACG Mid-Atlantic Growth Conference? What benefits do you get out of attending it? What type of people would benefit from it?

Chuck Carr: I am currently the co-chair of the 2016 Mid-Atlantic Growth Conference, along with Denis O’Sullivan. The conference is a great opportunity to network, and also learn about some of the best technology companies in our region. The event will benefit anyone involved in the technology industry.

CGCS: Last year was the first year that technology companies were showcased, what was your reason for bringing them back this year? Were they successful last year?

Chuck Carr: Yes, last year’s event attendees really learned a lot about some of the technology companies in our region. The line-up that we have for this year’s conference is every bit as good as last year’s.

I’m confident that all of the attendees at the 2016 conference will find learning about the showcased companies both interesting and informative. .

CGCS: What are you looking forward to most at this year’s event?

Chuck Carr: I’m looking forward to the opportunity to reconnect with a lot of the technology company executives, investors and service providers.

The 22nd ACG Mid-Atlantic Growth Conference takes place on Thursday March 31st 2016 at the Hyatt Regency in Tysons Corner.  To learn more or register to attend, click here.