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The ability to deliver valuable strategic growth guidance and exceptional transaction outcomes for our clients is based on the quality of our professionals. We are fortunate to have a “dream-team” of individuals, each of whom is complementary and represent centers-of-expertise within their specialty, to serve our clients. We are pleased to introduce our senior representatives who are the professionals who would be personally helping you.

John M. Boland, Managing Director

Growth Partners Strategic Advisors


Distinctions: John has been a highly successful Chief Executive Officer and President for well over a decade. Most of his experience has pertained to building and selling manufacturing companies, and most recently a disruptive B2B internet commerce enterprise. Based on this experience, John brings an “owner’s perspective” to Growth Partners Strategic Advisor clients. This is invaluable to the client based on John’s ability to not just anticipate and empathize, but to offer his expertise in regard to all important growth, preparatory and sale matters. Every CEO, President or owner would want John on his or her team for purposes of offering advisement related to building their company, or at the proper time, selling in whole or part.

Background: John’s background is classic. He was cross-fertilized by having progressive roles in engineering, production management, product management and sales leadership in preface to his CEO and President functionality. After undergraduate school, John began his career with Ingersoll-Dresser Pump Company. He then joined Kaiser Aerospace and Electronics Corporate managing commercial and military aircraft systems, before spending 17 years with SWM Systems and ATS Workholding. He was President of the former, and CEO of the latter (ATS purchased SMW) before its liquidity event in 2015. Based on this experience, John has extensive M&A and capital formation experience complementing exceptional manufacturing and leadership skills.

Education: John was raised in Connecticut, and received a Bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Upon moving to Southern California to join Ingersoll, he received a Master of Business Administration degree from in finance from the University of California at Irvine.

Readiness: John remains prepared to assist his fellow CEO’s, Presidents and owners in regard to each of Growth Partners Strategic Advisors offerings, while providing additional advisement related to a variety of other important matters. John is an exceptional resource and a special asset to our clients.

Marc Emmer, Managing Director

Growth Partners Strategic Advisors


Distinctions: Marc is an author, speaker and consultant who is recognized as a thought-leader throughout North America as an expert in strategy and strategic planning. The release of Marc’s book, “Intended Consequences” was covered by Forbes, CNBC and Fox Business. Marc has personally lead strategic planning processes for over 125 companies in a broad range of verticals, including manufacturing, financial services, healthcare, and energy. This is accomplished by creating highly productive “environments” affording management teams with the ability to maximize creative thought and enrollment. In short, Marc is a special resource that helps increase the value of companies.

Background: Marc was raised in New York and began his career in the food business. He spent over 20 years in marketing, business development, and operations thereby becoming cross-fertilized in regard to all of the key aspects of a business. Based on Marc’s conviction behind the necessity and value of strategic direction, Marc began his consulting practice in 2002. Since this founding, Marc has been an instrumental contributor to both public and private companies as they have optimized their enterprise value. He has been retained by such distinguished companies such as Rio Tinto, Sunkist and Superior International. Marc will not just assist in crafting and supporting a strategic plan, but also will promote greater management team cohesion and engagement.

Education: Marc graduated from Loyola Marymount’s business school, and completed executive education management programs at Ohio State and Cornell from which he earned a financial management certification. Marc has delivered over 225 keynote speeches and is an active Vistage speaker.

Readiness: Marc remains prepared to assist clients develop strategic plans, and support certain execution objectives. In some cases, Marc will vet Growth Partners’ Creating New Value deliverable with senior management through a formalized and valuable process. Marc is a top professional resource.

Brad Grob, Managing Director

Growth Partners Strategic Advisors


Distinctions: Brad is an expert and thought-leader in helping companies generate significant new revenue growth. In short, Brad is a “revenue guru.” Brad has been a successful company owner, and builder of businesses as an officer and consultant. His clients/employers have spanned a range of sizes and industries. Brad has the ability to determine the optimal next-steps in revenue development for companies of all types, and in some cases, assist with implementation and execution. He has a demonstrated track-record that has resulted in significant increases in company value for his clients. Brad offers significant value to our clients, both in the short and long term.

Background: Brad began his career by working for Xerox to build new revenue sources. He then founded a manufacturing company that was an early pioneer in maximizing retail and direct response channels. He later joined Baker & Taylor developing new growth strategies for this specialized distributor which lead to this company’s growth from $40 million to $150 million, and then Multicom where he developed innovative partnerships with very large companies that produced exceptional revenue growth results (400% in two years). Before beginning specialized consulting activities, he built Emblaze Systems as an EVP, and his achievements were instrumental in this company’s successful IPO. In summary, Brad enjoys a long-standing record of helping companies attain sustained profitable growth.

Education: Brad received a Bachelor’s degree in both electrical engineering and economics from Duke University, and a Master of Business Administration degree from the Wharton School, at the University of Pennsylvania. Brad has taught eMarketing at UCLA, and is a Vistage speaker.

Readiness: Brad remains prepared to assist clients with all of their “build,” or new revenue generation objectives. He is actively engaged with Growth Partners Strategic Advisors Creating New Value, and Maximizing Existing Value offerings. Brad is an exceptional and rare asset for our clients.

Jeffrey R. Knakal, Managing Partner

Growth Partners Investment Banking
Growth Partners Strategic Advisors


Distinctions: Jeff founded Growth Partners in 1994 based on the vision and opportunity to create a more powerful investment banking capability by integrating a synergistic strategic development competency. Aside from being a thought-leading and highly successful investment banking professional, Jeff has developed a state-of-the-art strategic engineering capability replete with proprietary practices. This new integrated duality well transcends traditional investment banking approaches, and leads to superior transaction outcomes for clients. Jeff enjoys a tremendous record of building companies (e.g., he founded two companies with each achieving revenues of over $100 million) to increase their value, and executing transactions in a next-generation manner, while earning special trust from all of his clients.

Background: Before founding Growth Partners, Jeff was a highly successful investment banking professional on Wall Street in New York. He built successful practices for three world-class firms. Jeff began his career with JP Morgan Chase handling relationships and transactions with US multinationals. He was then recruited to Credit Suisse to build client relationships, execute transactions and work among three affiliated firms (First Boston, CSFB and Credit Suisse). Thereafter, Jeff was the first American hired to build a US investment banking business for Daiwa Securities. Jeff’s career is hallmarked by achieving, a number of “first-time” transactions for clients such as Colgate-Palmolive and Aetna Life, and a number of awards (e.g., Deal of the Year in 1990). Throughout his career Jeff has been a published “best practice” author, and an active speaker.

Education: Jeff received a Bachelor’s degree from the Wharton School, at the University of Pennsylvania majoring in finance, and a Master of Business Administration from the Stern School, at New York University majoring in finance. Jeff continuously studies strategic engineering, and has five FINRA licenses.

Readiness: Jeff remains ready to use his unique practices and approaches with client for purposes of maximizing a company’s opportunity whether related to, achieving the best possible M&A and capital formation transaction outcomes, or offering “build” advice. Jeff is a distinguished and compelling resource.

Here is a speaking example as Jeff moderated a panel discussion about Relationships Within a Deal at C-Suite Quarterly’s Investment Summit.
CSQ Investment Summit Panel.

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