Our Business Brokers are the Difference Makers
We are seasoned professionals with decades of entrepreneurial and corporate experience and the passion for taking businesses—between wall street and main street—to heights they never imagined. If you are a business owner and technical expert in your field, but lack the resources and knowledge that larger organizations take for granted, we can help. Our valuation tools, business advisory consultations and training are designed to help you so that you can spend time doing the things you love.
Innovative Business Advisors works with private company owners throughout the midwest who want to learn what their business is worth. Once they know the current value, business owners often want to learn what they can do to grow the worth and value of their company. We teach them how to grow the business worth over time.
When the time is right to sell to employees, family or friends, or to an outsider, our business advisors work with business owners to position the company to be ready for transfer. IBA requires that the business possess three primary characteristics: 1) at least five years (5 yrs) of continuous operation; 2) complete set of financial documents compiled by an accounting professional; 3) a price expectation that is in-line with the current market place.
Our team consists of experienced professionals in the St. Louis Metropolitan area (both Missouri and Illinois). Learn more about each of us below and contact us to set up a consultation.
Steven Denny co-founded Innovative Business Advisors in 2018 and serves as a Managing Member of the firm. Steve has been actively engaged in M/A activities in a wide variety of industries for the last 14 years and has developed specific products to assist clients in growing their profitability and enterprise value. His specialty is working with established private companies in the lower middle market with annual revenues from $1 – 50 million.
Prior to founding his own firm in 2005, Steven spent 25 years as a senior executive in the hospitality management business working with two Fortune 25 companies. During this time, Steven distinguished himself as an exceptional business development and leadership professional, perennially appointed as member of the “Chairman’s Club”. This led to his appointment to lead the formation of a common platform used to manage customer relationships globally.
Born and raised in California, Steven paid his own way through college beginning at the University of North Carolina and culminating at High Point University. As a lifelong learner, Steven has completed executive training with Six Sigma (green belt), Xerox PSS, Karrass Negotiation, Miller Heiman and several others throughout his corporate career. Today he is recognized as a business and valuation expert in the Hospitality industry. Steven has also served in public office as a member of the Board of Education and continues to serve his community including several years as Chairman – Finance for the ~4,500 member household Community Association overseeing a multi-million dollar annual budget. He is active in the local Chamber, his church and various other civic organizations.
Terry Lammers, CVA
Terry Lammers grew up watching his parents run their own company in the fuel & lubricants industry, and eventually came on as a full-time employee in the early 90’s and took over as President of the company.
In just 18 years, TriCounty Petroleum had purchased 11 different companies, growing Terry’s family business from $750,000 annual sales to over $40 million when the company was sold in 2010.
Today, as Co-Founder and Managing Member of Innovative Business Advisors, Terry taps into his financial expertise and hands-on business experience to advise and guide business owners who are interested in learning the value of their business, the process of acquiring new businesses, or knowing when and how to sell their business.
Terry received his designation as a Certified Valuation Analyst (CVA), which is an accreditation through the National Association of Certified Valuation Analysts (NACVA). He also holds a Real Estate Brokers License with the state of Illinois.
In Terry's book, "You Don’t Know What You Don’t Know: Everything You Need to Know to Buy or Sell a Business," he provides an in-depth examination of the process of buying, growing, and eventually selling a business. No matter what stage of business ownership you’re in, Terry will help you understand how to navigate the twists and turns of the business cycle and steer your enterprise toward success.
Pat Dolan has worked in the Financial Services industry over thirty-five years dealing in a broad range of securities and strategies. He is affiliated with Ecoban Securities, a FINRA registered Broker/Dealer, and is a Partner with Innovative Business Advisors, LLC, a consulting and business brokerage firm. Along with his experience in the Capital Markets, Pat has experience as an entrepreneur, having started two companies in the financial services industry: eBond.com and Bellerive Capital Management, and most recently, serving as Chief Executive Officer of SmartCare Consultants, a healthcare technology start-up venture. He holds a Master of International Management (MIM) degree from Thunderbird, the American Graduate School of International Management, has been married over thirty-eight years, has three sons, and enjoys golf, personal training, and cycling.
Joe Behnken is a senior advisor for Innovative. Joe is a serial entrepreneur owning businesses involved in transportation, contract mining, mortgage and commercial banking, financial consulting, and manufacturing. Joe has a professional designation as a Certified Public Accountant.
Joe’s manufacturing background consists of being a part owner of a manufacturing plant that manufactures avian and animal protection insulator and cut-out covers for the poser utility industry. He was the CEO and general manager of the company from 2008 to 2019. Further experience in the industry includes being on the board of directors of Jakel, Inc., a $40 million dollar manufacturer of ¼” horsepower electric motors. He also has experience in the industry as a financial consultant in fabrication and assembly sectors of the industry.
Joe’s transportation background consists of owning a group of three motor carriers that was involved in specialized bulk truck load transportation. One of the companies also transported heavy equipment and truck load dry van and flatbed transportation. He was a principle in the industry for seventeen years. Further experience includes financial consulting in the industry.
Joe’s mining background consists of owning a company that reclaimed abandoned coal mines. Also, Joe was a consultant to Doe Run Mining, one of the largest iron ore mining companies in the world, for a full-time thirteen-month project.
Joe’s distribution background consists of owning a company that was involved in the distribution of fertilizer, fuel oil, rock and decorative gravel and coal. In this business, he bought, warehoused, and resold the products.
Joe’s mortgage and commercial banking background includes co-founding two mortgage companies and one commercial bank.
Jim Stauder, CPA (inactive) is a Senior Advisor at Innovative Business Advisors, as well as the President of Biz Owner Advisors, LLC. He has been providing business brokerage services in the St. Louis Metropolitan area, including the Metro East, since 2001.
He is also the author and founder of the How To Plan and Sell a Business website containing 90 articles on topics related to selling a business.
Brendan Barone is a Business Broker with Innovative Business Advisors and a Commercial Real Estate Broker with Kunkel Commercial Group, Inc. He has real estate licenses in both Illinois and Missouri. His focus is on St. Clair, Madison and St. Louis counties. Brendan works with landlords and buyers/tenants in the sale and leasing of commercial and multi-family real estate. Brendan also works with business owners looking to sell their businesses with or without the real estate included. Before becoming a commercial real estate broker Brendan worked as a community outreach specialist on 12 electoral campaigns and 8 land-use disputes around proposed development projects. In 2020 Brendan launched his consulting firm, Front Runner Campaigns. Front Runner Campaigns is political and land-use consulting firm that provides support to electoral, issue, and land-use campaigns. Currently Front Runner Campaigns has been providing strategic support for a candidate for Governor of Indiana.
Brendan graduated with a degree in Political Science from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Terri LaCroix is the Office Manager for Innovative Business Advisors and has an extensive administrative and legal background. She has worked as a paralegal at several law firms in the St. Louis area. She also has experience in managing CRMs and databases for large document-intensive litigation, as well as administrative and marketing experience working as a virtual Executive Assistant.
James W. Brinkmeyer has been a business consultant and intermediary for the past 14 years and has over 40 years’ experience as a business owner and manager with several major progressive Fortune 500 national companies at both corporate and field levels, concentrating on strategic planning, creating business processes, project management, sales and marketing branded and unbranded products, franchising, production, mergers and acquisitions and training.
Jim has performed a management role in food and beverage manufacturing as well as having been a consultant to a wide range of industries including manufacturing, wholesale, telecom, advertising information, insurance, real estate and the retail industries.
He has successfully started, acquired and sold several businesses and has been a partner in fast food franchise businesses and a travel company.
Jim has many years of franchising experience successfully serving as a new business development manager and as an intermediary in many transfers and mergers and acquisitions. Jim has a BS degree in Agricultural Economics. He is married with two sons.
Marquita Trenier Wiley is a Business Broker for Innovative and a Business Executive with over 30 years of experience in the Financial Services industry. She is President of Trenier Enterprises, LLC, a multi-business holding company. Marquita established Trenier Enterprises, LLC in 2005 and has grown the business through both acquisition and de-novo start-up.
After receiving my degree, I have worked with some of the largest prestige companies as an accountant. After several years working in the accounting industry, I have decided to start my own business as a Financial Advisor. This career lead me to help buyers and sellers make intelligent decisions when it comes to investing in their future by selling and buying investment properties. I am a people person and happy to help you create your goals.
Hassan Megahy is an executive and entrepreneur with years of experience in healthcare and start up operations. Over that time he has created and executed numerous strategic growth opportunities through targeted M&A. His skills include business valuations, deal negotiations and general business consulting.
A native of a Central Illinois farm community, Gary graduated from Southern Illinois University Edwardsville with Bachelors in Science (Biology/Chemistry) after serving in the U.S. Army 8th Infantry Division. He then spent 15 + years in Pharmaceutical Manufacturing as Manufacturing Manager, Project Management and is also a certified Lean Six Sigma Black Belt in Process Improvement. Leaving Pharmaceuticals eight years ago, he opened his own service-oriented business serving Missouri and Illinois. Gary worked with LINK Group starting in 2020 and recently joined IBA. He is looking forward to helping connect sellers and buyers to achieve their desired goals.
Julie has a Bachelor’s Degree from University of Central Missouri. She has 22 years’ experience in management, project development, negotiations, sales and marketing. She has owned two small businesses and managed the LINK St. Louis office for over 5 years. She looks forward to assisting sellers with finding the right buyer, and buyers with finding the right business opportunity.
Glenn has a long background in sales and education. He is excited to have the opportunity to use his background to serve business owners and buyers. He believes the best deals are those in which everyone walks away from the closing table happy! IBA's mission statement aligns 100% with his philosophy and he looks forward to building relationships while putting buyers and sellers together.
Howard Hughes III
Howard Hughes is a graduate from Lincoln University of Missouri, dually majored in Business Administration and Agricultural Business. He has 10 years of experience in Business Development, Consulting, Sales, Marketing and Management. Howard owns two businesses based out of the St. Louis area and is looking to help buyers and sellers find businesses that fit their parameters, location, size, industry and price.
Malisa has experience in starting, buying and closing businesses. She held a WBE (Woman Business Entity) certification status with the state of Missouri for several years and also has experience with SBA loans, for business startup and commercial real estate. She has a degree in Business Management/ Accounting.
Starting her business from scratch and research, Malisa successfully owned and operated her commercial printing business for 23 years. Starting out as a Packaging, Shipping and Mailbox business then later buying a commercial print shop, she grew the business over the next several years until she sold it so she could move on to her next adventure.
Kevin Washington has nearly 20 years of experience as an owner of two small businesses, with one company specializing in effective, high-impact marketing campaigns, and the other specializing in rental property investment and property management. In addition to this, Kevin has spent most of his professional career helping small and medium-sized business owners increase profitability through effective marketing campaigns.
Kevin is passionate about helping business owners achieve their business goals and is looking forward to helping business owners sell their businesses as they transition to the next phase of their professional or personal journey. Although he primarily focuses on tech companies, Kevin also has experience and expertise in working in the restaurant, healthcare and automotive industries.
Kevin has cultivated an extensive professional network in the St. Louis market through previous work experience with Monster.com, St. Louis Convention and Visitors Commission, as well as through several radio and TV stations including KMOX 1120 AM (Home of the Cardinals), FOX 2 TV and WIL 92 FM.
During his limited free time, Kevin enjoys spending time with family and friends, reading, and a wide variety of athletic activities including golfing, tennis, running and working out.