Chartwell Advises on Sale of Marco, Inc. to Norwest Equity Partners


Chartwell is pleased to announce the successful sale of Marco, Inc. ("Marco" or the “Company”) to Norwest Equity Partners ("NEP"), a nationally recognized leader in the private equity investment community.  Marco, a well-known market leader in providing IT products, services, and solutions had also been a long-time 100% employee-owned company through an Employee Stock Ownership Plan (“ESOP”). Through this transaction, Marco created a significant realization of retirement assets for their ESOP participants.  Further, by partnering with NEP to provide additional capital and strategic insights, Marco now has additional resources to accelerate its industry leading growth.

Upon receiving an unsolicited strategic offer to purchase the business, Marco engaged Chartwell to evaluate the offer and review the Company’s strategic alternatives. Based on the results of this analysis, Marco’s Board of Directors determined it was in the best interest of the ESOP participants to pursue a potential sale.  Throughout our engagement, Chartwell worked with determination to maximize the outcome for all Company stakeholders.  With this objective, we recommended that Marco explore private equity proposals to fulfill many of Marco’s objectives, including continuity of the Company’s name, headquarters, management, culture, and employee base, as well as attractive economic terms.  A limited number of highly qualified prospective acquirers were invited to participate in a streamlined, highly efficient sales process that maximized the odds of a successful transaction being completed on time and on market terms as directed by Marco’s Board of Directors.  Assisting to achieve Marco’s objectives, Chartwell’s nationally recognized expertise and experience in ESOPs and M&A ensured that the ESOP’s ownership structure enhanced, rather than detracted from, the sales process and the results realized.

“Selling our company was the biggest decision we ever made, and we relied on Chartwell as our trusted advisor throughout the entire process. They took the lead in evaluating our unsolicited offer from a strategic buyer to educating us on our options with private equity investors. Chartwell led the negotiation process with NEP in this highly complex transaction and brought it to a close in 75 days. I was very impressed with their expertise, guidance, and the superior outcome for our ESOP participants and Marco.”

Jeff Gau
Chief Executive Officer

Going forward, Marco is excited to partner with NEP to build on their unparalleled reputation for supporting the ongoing growth of their portfolio companies.  As mutual residents of Minnesota, Marco and NEP share a common operating style and deep appreciation for the Company’s culture and workforce that will support NEP’s investment of time and resources to foster continued growth as the business continues to expand into new geographies, products, and customers.

“Our firm has extensive experience working with companies like Marco, and we are excited to partner with Jeff Gau and his management team to help them continue growing and building into an even stronger company. Jeff is an innovative thought-leader who knows how to not only execute but create value. Marco’s leadership, culture, and customer-centric approach were key investment drivers for us. We also appreciate our shared Minnesota roots and long history in our respective businesses. Our partnership with Marco is a great fit.  

In addition, Chartwell’s leadership and efficient deal process design helped contribute to a smoothly executed transaction timeline. Marco was able to move right along with us throughout each step of the expedited process just as quickly as any other acquisition we have completed.”

Tim DeVries
Managing General Partner
Norwest Equity Partners

Marco was founded in 1973 and serves over 25,000 customers nationally. Marco provides copiers/printers, business IT services, managed services, hosted/cloud services, carrier services, phone systems, document management and audio/video systems.  For more information about Marco, please visit

NEP has been investing in growing, profitable, and scalable middle market companies since 1961 and has extensive experience working with technology and business services related companies. Representative investments within the sector include Welocalize, GoHealth, Cyber Risk Management, Surgical Information Systems, Amcom Software, Mitchell International, PeopleNet, and Rosetta Stone. For more information about NEP, please visit

Chartwell provides comprehensive financial advisory solutions to the middle market.  With substantial corporate finance, investment banking, and capital markets expertise, the Chartwell team works with clients and their advisors to deliver independent, solutions-based advisory services that are unbiased to outcome, free from conflicts, and with a comprehensive focus on optimizing the clients' objectives.  For additional information on this transaction, please contact Greg Fresh at 612-230-3125 or, or Ted Margarit at 612-230-3126 or

The Company was represented by Chartwell Financial Advisory, Inc. as sole financial advisor and Stinson Leonard Street LLP acted as legal counsel. Bankers Trust Company of South Dakota served as the ESOP Trustee, with Stout Risius Ross, Inc. and K&L Gates LLP providing financial and legal advice respectively. NEP was advised by Lindquist & Vennum LLP.

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