All posts by Kastle Olson


Denny’s staff donates time, tips to surprise needy families


The wait staff, managers and cooks at a Scottsdale Denny’s canceled their own Christmas party, and instead threw a party for four struggling families.

“We normally do a white elephant for $20 each, but we don’t need a gift from each other,” manager Elizabeth Cervantes said. “We decided to get presents for other people.”

They agreed to help one family, but the number quickly grew to four.

Cervantes found the families on Facebook.

One is struggling financially, two are victims of crimes, and the fourth is dealing with medical issues.

Together with some of the restaurant’s regular customers and others, the Denny’s staff arranged an early Christmas for the families Wednesday night at the restaurant near 7000 E. Mayo Blvd.

Each family was treated to dinner, a Christmas tree, presents and more. Each child received a new bike.

One mother wiped tears away, telling the Denny’s staff that her family was unable to celebrate Thanksgiving. She said without their generosity, they would not have been able to have a Christmas either.

“It touches my heart to know we helped these people,” Cervantes said.

Single mother Tisha Morgan, of New River, came with her kids, including her 1-year-old, James. He uses a feeding tube and requires care 24 hours a day.

“I’m so thankful and grateful for this. I don’t know what we would’ve done without their help,” she said.

The Denny’s staff members looked on, proud of their contributions.

“It’s so neat to see something we just thought about doing two weeks ago become so beautiful,” said Shere Baker, an overnight waitress.

Copyright 2016 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.

Source: AZ Family


Cave Creek Capital Closes Investment in Air Waves LLC

October 24, 2016

Cave Creek Capital (“CCCM”) is pleased to announce its investment in Air Waves LLC (“Air Waves”), a leading provider of on demand garment printing and fulfillment services. Air Waves services several major online retailers, including Amazon, Zulily and by offering thousands of creative, high quality apparel products with rapid turnaround time and “mass customization” capabilities unmatched by competitors. As apparel sales move online, Air Waves is uniquely positioned to offer products and services that enable E-tailers to improve their quality, selection and turnaround time for end customers.

CCCM’s recapitalization funded a repurchase of shares from Management, in conjunction with a strong team of investment partners, including Stewart Capital, C3 Capital, and Northwood Ventures. “We are looking forward to expanding our business with the help of our new partners.” said Kyle Kantner, CEO of Air Waves.  “Our new partners can provide the financial resources and strategic and operational assistance we need to continue our 30% annual growth” states Dan Kaiser, Air Waves CFO.

Cave Creek Capital has an extensive track record of successful investments where Founders can gain personal liquidity, add growth capital and continue to run their companies. CCCM offers the best of a Family Office combined with an institutional investor’s resources.


Airwaves Case Study

Recapitalization allows AirWaves’ to gain institutional support, and “deep pockets” to fund Growth


  • Air Waves is a leading provider of on demand apparel fulfillment for the ecommerce channel.
  • The company has developed a proprietary process for managing the complexity of “mass customization” of decorating apparel in single unit quantities.
  • The current owners bought Airwaves in 2009. By expanding offerings, investing in technology, and developing new processes Air Waves revenues grew by 500%
  • Owners desired partial liquidity, a strong Board of Directors and Funding to continue their sales growth of nearly 30 % per year.




  • Recapitalization with CCCM and its affiliates completed in October 2016
  • Owners achieved their liquidity goals from the transaction
  • Management Team retains a significant minority stake with representation on the Company’s expanded Board of Directors
  • Management continues to run the Company with same leadership roles
  • Substantial investments planned in new personnel
  • Now executing their strategic plan to grow revenues by 5x through customer diversification, organic growth, and acquisitions




VMC selected for “Mission to Mars”

Bloomingdale, NJ – July 6, 2016 – The VMC Group, a world leader in innovative shock, seismic, vibration and engineering services, is pleased to announce it has been awarded a $1.6 million dollar contract by Boeing. The VMC Group will provide Boeing with engineering testing services and isolators that will be used in NASA’s unprecedented Space Launch System (SLS), the largest and most powerful rocket to ever be built.

The SLS is a heavy-lift launch vehicle that is designed for deep space exploration beyond Earth’s orbit, with astronauts and cargo, which is currently under development. The SLS is approximately 38 stories tall, weighs 6.5 million lbs and has 9 million lbs of thrust. The ultimate goal of the SLS is a Mars landing in 2030. Boeing is the prime contractor for the core stage component of the launch vehicle, which includes its avionics.

VMC’s isolators will be used to absorb the vibration of the rack that holds the critical avionics inside the core stage of the SLS. The core stage will house all of the vehicle’s avionics that will control the SLS during flight, including flight computers, instrumentation, sensors and other electronics. Boeing and VMC have established a lengthy test plan that will involve load deflection testing over the next year. Based on this testing, VMC will continue to evolve their products in preparation for the SLS test launch from Kennedy Space Center, which is expected to take place in late 2018.

“The VMC Group is proud to have an established working relationship with Boeing spanning many years,” states John Wilson, Jr., Chief Executive Officer of The VMC Group. “We’re excited to be able to provide solutions for a project of this magnitude that is so progressive in nature and one that could potentially lead to an extraordinary milestone in space exploration.”

For nearly ten decades, The VMC Group has been recognized as a world leader in the design and manufacture of vibration isolation and seismic energy management technologies. The VMC Group and their Engineering Services Division have been providing Special Seismic Certification to Fortune 500 companies and manufacturers of HVAC, power generation and fire protection systems for more than 10 years. The VMC Group is accredited by the International Accreditation Service (IAS) as a Product Certification Agency PCA-127, Third-Party Certification Body making VMC the first and only product certifying agency for special seismic certification of non structural building components and their mounting configurations.

Source: The VMC Group


Transnational Foods, Inc. announces Brett Barcelona as Executive Vice President

MIAMI–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Transnational Foods, Inc. (, a leading marketer of private label grocery products, announced today that Brett Barcelona has joined the firm as Executive Vice President, New Business to further develop the company’s growing portfolio of regional and national customers. Brett comes with a wealth of industry experience, having spent the last 23 years at Daymon Worldwide. During his time at Daymon, Brett held various executive level positions working with major retailers and private brand suppliers. Most recently, Brett was President and General Manager of Daymon’s retail services business units.

Brett will continue to drive the success Transnational Foods has had in providing great products to top retail companies throughout America. “I am excited to join Transnational Foods to begin working with a highly motivated team and to grow our relationships and business with current and new customers. I am fortunate to be joining such a respected company that prides itself on being the most reliable global sourcing company that provides grocery stores across the United States with cost competitive and superior quality products.”

“Brett’s wealth of experience and industry knowledge has made him a key addition to our organization,” said Marcelo Young, CEO of Transnational Foods. “We view Brett’s appointment as a sign of our commitment to being the leading globally-sourced foods provider in our industry. Our new innovative products and increasing demand from our customers led us to look for an addition to our team who fits in with our ethos of innovation and exceptional service. We are thrilled to have Brett join us and I am confident that he will play a key role in providing and implementing high quality solutions for our customers.”

About Transnational Foods, Inc.

Transnational Foods, Inc. offers leading supermarkets, wholesalers, dollar stores, convenience stores and distributors a wide range of products, either under its well-known “Pampa” brand, its premium brand “della Natura” or private brands. Transnational Foods sources more than 350 SKUs manufactured in 50 production facilities located in 25 countries, all of which are coordinated from procurement offices located in South America and Asia. Additional information is at


Transnational Foods, Inc.
Brett Barcelona, 305-365-9652 Ext 228

Source: Business Wire


Odyssey Investment Partners Completes Acquisition of Integro

New York, November 2, 2015

Odyssey Investment Partners, LLC today announced that an affiliate has completed its acquisition of Integro Ltd., an international insurance brokerage and risk management firm. Financial details of the investment were not disclosed.

Founded in 2005, Integro has evolved to become a leading specialty insurance brokerage firm with a significant global presence. In recent years, Integro has been actively building its specialty areas, including Aviation; Benefits Consulting; Entertainment; Financial Institutions; Healthcare; Marine/Energy; Professional Services;  Real Estate/Construction; Reinsurance; Retail/Consumer Services; and Trade & Logistics/Transportation in North America, and globally.

Integro has catapulted to the eighth largest private broker in the United States in terms of property/casualty written premium, according to Insurance Journal. Integro serves clients in over 125 countries from more than 40 offices across the globe.

Jeffrey McKibben, a Managing Principal of Odyssey Investment Partners, said, “We are excited to complete this transaction and to build on Integro’s exceptional success to date in the brokerage and risk management sectors. We look forward to our new partnership with the Integro management team and to providing the resources and support needed to achieve continued success.”

The Integro management team led by William Goldstein, John Sutton, Toby Humphreys and Marc Kunney remains in place, and certain members of the management team and other employees remain shareholders in the company.

Mr. Goldstein, previously President of Integro, has been named Chief Executive Officer. He said, “We are thrilled to be aligning with Odyssey, an active partner that will add value in so many initiatives, including refining strategic direction, accelerating acquisitions, improving financing, and supporting our deep commitment to innovation and client service.”

Sandler O’Neill + Partners, L.P. served as financial advisor and Latham & Watkins LLP served as legal counsel to Odyssey in the transaction. Evercore served as financial advisor and Cahill, Gordon & Reindel, and Proskauer Rose LLP served as legal counsel to Integro.

About Integro Integro is an insurance brokerage and risk management firm. Clients credit Integro’s superior technical abilities and creative, collaborative work style for securing superior program results and pricing. The firm’s acknowledged capabilities in brokerage, risk analytics and claims are rewriting industry standards for service and quality. Launched in 2005, Integro and its family of specialty insurance and reinsurance companies, some having served clients for more than 150 years, operate from offices in the United States, Canada, Bermuda and the United Kingdom. Its U.S. headquarters is located at 1 State Street Plaza, 9th Floor, New York, NY 10004. 877.688.8701.

About Odyssey Investment Partners Odyssey Investment Partners, LLC, with offices in New York and Los Angeles, is a leading private equity investment firm with a 20+ year history of partnering with skilled managers to transform middle-market companies into more efficient and diversified businesses with strong growth profiles. Odyssey makes majority controlled investments in industries with a long-term positive outlook and favorable secular trends. For further information about Odyssey Investment Partners, LLC, please visit


For Integro:
Betsy Van Alstyne
(973) 820-1469

For Odyssey Investment Partners:
Mark Semer
Kekst and Company
(212) 521-4800


Cave Creek Capital Closes Investment in Transnational Foods

September 10, 2015

Cave Creek Capital (“CCCM”) is pleased to announce its investment in Transnational Foods LLC (“Transnational”), a leading provider of globally sourced, competitively priced branded and private label food products. Transnational services several major national food retailers including Wal-Mart, Dollar Stores and Supermarkets. Transnational Foods was one of the first to develop cost-effective procurement programs with major retailers, enabling them to expand their in-house and private label food offerings by accessing international supply partners in 25 different countries. Their diverse and long standing global relationships allow them to optimize price, timing of delivery and product mix for major retailers, supplying over 400 SKU’s to 30,000 stores nationally in categories such as canned fruits and vegetables, seafood, pasta, olive oil and lemon juice.

CCCM’s recapitalization provided growth capital and funded a repurchase of shares from minority shareholders in conjunction with a strong team of investment partners, including Stewart Capital, C3 Capital and Eagle Capital. “We are pleased to have a group of committed partners to help our company grow to the next level.” states Marcelo Young, President of Transnational. “Our new partners can provide the capital necessary to expand our personnel, product lines and add acquisitions for growth”.

Cave Creek Capital has an extensive track record of successful investments where Founders can gain personal liquidity, add growth capital and continue to run their companies. G. Kevin Fechtmeyer, CCCM Managing Partner, added; “We can offer the best of a Family Office combined with an institutional investor’s resources. Our average portfolio company has grown over 300% during our investment period. We look forward to Marcelo’s team at Transnational being our partners for many years.”


QK Holdings Case Study

Leading Brand Resurgence

  • QK founded as Denny’s franchisee by Robbie Qualls and Doug Koch in 1993 with their first restaurant in Holbrook, AZ
  • QK purchases 9 units in Oregon, Dennis Ekstrom joins company as senior executive in 1995
  • QK diversifies into CSR in 2002 with an acquisition of Del Taco units in New Mexico
  • QK expands into 9 states with 88 restaurants by 2011, becoming the largest Denny’s franchisee in the U.S. with nearly $100MM of revenue and the strongest operating team in the system
  • Robbie Qualls seeks to retire and cash out in 2013 while Doug Koch wants to continue to expand the business
  • They select Cave Creek Capital as a 50% partner in a $43MM leveraged recapitalization
  • Highly complex deal closed with 79 separate LLC’s and three different corporate entities combined in hybrid stock/asset transaction; met liquidity and tax needs of the three founders
  • Founders, Doug Koch and Dennis Ekstrom receive partial liquidity for their shares and continue as senior management while Robbie Qualls remains as Vice Chairman of the Board

Denny's_logo CCCM4878_MSP_3278

  • QK restaurant base grows by 15 units and Denny’s brand surges under new corporate leadership, with run rate revenues growing nearly 30% within two years
  • Record comp store growth of nearly 10% for 2015
  • EBITDA grows almost 50% since the aquisition
  • Substantial progress in building infrastructure; CFO hired, first audit and consolidated tax return
  • Restaurant industry in general and Denny’s, in particular, continues strong resurgence in performance and valuations under CEO, Jon Miller



Transnational Case Study

Attracting Blue Chip Clients

  • Marcelo Young, executive for a multi-national food company based in Argentina, identifies need for value-priced brand-equivalent food items by U.S retailers
  • Transnational founded by Marcelo Young in Miami in 2002 and gains rapid penetration in Dollar Store channel just as they begin expanding food offerings
  • During Recession of 2008-09, U.S retailers expand value brand offerings and TNF is well positioned to grow as consumers shift towards value priced private label/National Brand Equivalents
  • TNF adds WalMart as a customer in 2010 and grows rapidly to 200 SKU’s
  • Marcelo Young wins E&Y Entrepreneur of the Year Award in 2015 as Company nearly doubles sales in four years
  • Management seeks capital partner to expand board, provide liquidity to shareholders and strengthen balance sheet for further growth
  • TNF selects Cave Creek Capital to lead majority recapitalization based on its track record of success in Founder Led Growth Recaps


  • Transaction closes in July 2015
  • Management cashes out minority shareholders, gains personal liquidity and establishes a larger ownership stake for the management team
  • Strategic Plan targets 200% sales growth in five years through both organic growth and acquisitions