During the past several years, Mark VanderWal has purchased, grown, and sold two of his own businesses. Each venture helped round out Mr. VanderWal’s 25+ years of experience in the manufacturing, distribution, service, and retail sectors. During these transactions, Mr. VanderWal realized he enjoyed the process of buying and selling his businesses more than ownership itself. So now, as a valued member of the Praxis team, Mark knows full well what it is like to sit in the chair of a business owner, including the joy and personal benefits of growing a business, and the pride of providing employees job satisfaction and a paycheck. He also understands the stresses of managing cash flow, making payroll, daily personnel issues, and eventually having to make a decision to sell a business.
In addition to his hands-on business experience, Mr. VanderWal attributes his business success to his work ethic, integrity, ability to develop and execute plans, and solid marketing skills. These attributes often match those required to find the right business buyer for our sellers, and to execute confidential ownership transitions.
Earlier, Mr. VanderWal had a successful corporate career. After earning a BS in Electrical Engineering from Michigan Technological University, he worked with a material handling manufacturer, holding positions as an engineer, sales engineer, and eventually U.S. Regional Sales Manager. As his family started to grow, the required travel meant too much time away from home, so Mark joined a West Michigan electrical and automation distributor which allowed him to be home nightly. Mark had positions of sales engineer, account manager, branch manager, marketing manager, and sales manager during his 15 years with this organization. In his various positions, Mark had the opportunity to work with hundreds of industrial and commercial facilities, from one man shops to Fortune 500 companies. This experience has already started to pay dividends in his new career as a business broker.