The National Capital Chapter of ACG recently added new members to its board. These new board members were selected to lead the chapter due to their active participation and their stellar reputations within the National Capital Region’s business community.

One of these new board members is Michael Hickey, a Regional Director at Glenmede, a privately owned and independent firm that offers wealth management and investment services to individuals across the country.

We recently had an opportunity to sit down with Michael to discuss the PE and VC markets, what he anticipates will happen in the equity markets in the coming year, and why he was excited to be part of the board for ACG National Capital. Here is what he had to say:

Corporate Growth Capital Style (CGCS): What do you see as the major trends in PE and VC in 2017?

Mr. Hickey: A great deal of capital has been raised by private equity sponsors, particularly at the high end of the market, and a great deal of dry powder is now available to sponsors. Investors concerned with public market volatility may be drawn to strategies such as control-oriented private equity and private credit that may offer less potential volatility.

A key strategy within control-oriented private equity is lower middle market buy & build where sponsors can acquire a platform, professionalize operations, and grow the business in order to capture a higher valuation.

On the venture side, companies are staying private longer which is made possible by the available capital in the sector. Despite recent notable failures in the IPO market, some venture backed companies will emerge and be considered “must own” stocks by the public markets.

Another trend we see is in artificial intelligence, or machine learning, which nearly every high technology company will need to incorporate in its go-forward strategy.

CGCS: How do you feel about the equity markets right now?

Mr. Hickey: We remain optimistic about the economic expansion and believe the economy will continue to expand in the near term, which should be positive for equity markets.

Second quarter earnings were promising, and data surrounding wages, employment and business sentiment all continue to improve.

We are cautious but optimistic about domestic and international monetary policy, as central banks continue to gradually raise interest rates and move away from accommodating monetary policy.

CGCS: You were recently named a Board Director for the National Capital Chapter of ACG. Why were you interested in that position?

Mr. Hickey: I am flattered to have been considered for the ACG Board and am happy to serve.   Katie [Newland], Nicole [Brophy], and the Board have done a wonderful job maintaining an organization that has always put its members first, and delivers high quality content and speakers.  I consistently walk out of our monthly events inspired and with fresh ideas on how to approach our business and region.

CGCS: What attracted you to ACG? What benefits does it afford you, personally?

Mr. Hickey: For me, it’s a combination of the quality programming and the business relationships.

ACG’s events, including the monthly meetings, business roundtables and the Mid-Atlantic Growth Conference, deliver exceedingly high quality speakers and presenters.  The networking at these events is great as well, thanks to the quality attendees.  I’ve made several productive professional partnerships through ACG.

CGCS: Has there been a recent ACG event or meeting that has stood out in your mind or really peaked your interest?

Mr. Hickey: There have been multiple monthly meetings and featured speakers that were of particular interest. [Founder and CEO of Cvent], Reggie Aggarwal, has an inspiring story.  He could be the next Governor of Virginia (you heard it here first).

[Co-Founder and CEO of Terbium Labs] Danny Rogers is a brilliant guy with a unique approach to Data Intelligence.  I became a Terbium client the moment I got back to the office.

Both of those events left me inspired and thinking of ways I could improve our business, take risk in smarter ways, and thankful my data is not on the dark web (thank you Terbium).

CGCS: Who should consider ACG membership, and what can they expect to gain from their membership?

Mr. Hickey: Again, ACG is an organization built around members and is a great resource for both owners and service professionals.   I have met some of my best professional contacts through ACG.

If you are trying to stay current in your industry, meet great people that can help with M&A, organic growth, or have access to capital, it’s a good place for you to be.

The Glenmede Trust Company, N.A. (“Glenmede”) is among the nation’s leading investment and wealth management firms with $37 billion of assets under management for high-net-worth individuals, families, family offices, endowment, foundations and institutional clients. Headquartered in Philadelphia, the firm has offices in Ohio, Delaware, New Jersey, New York City and Washington DC. For further information, please visit www.glenmede.com.

Opinions of Mr. Hickey are his alone and may not necessarily reflect those of Glenmede.

For more information about ACG and chapter membership click HERE.