Scott Ames Joins Cascadia Capital to Launch Financial Sponsor Coverage Efforts

Cascadia Capital, an investment bank serving middle market clients globally, is pleased to announce that Scott Ames has joined the firm as Managing Director of Financial Sponsor Coverage. In this role, he will continue to develop and institutionalize relationships with leading private equity firms, family offices and other capital players across the U.S.  Mr. Ames will work closely with Cascadia’s industry sector bankers to make valuable connections, effectively coordinate deal flow, and leverage bankers’ sub-vertical expertise to provide buy-side, sell-side and financing services to the firm’s clients and institutional partners.

“Financial sponsors are a significant part of our business, and we have developed deep relationships within the ecosystem over the past two decades,” noted Michael Butler, Chairman and CEO of Cascadia Capital. “In recent years, an increasing number of our engagements have involved private equity firms and other sponsors, which has created demand for a dedicated and coordinated financial sponsor coverage effort to allow the firm to better serve this constituency.”

With the support and partnership of our clients and partners, and a historic M&A market, Cascadia closed 51 transactions in 2021. Over 65% of Cascadia’s transactions were M&A advisory and of those, 40% were sold to private equity firms. Over 30% of Cascadia’s clients last year were institutionally-backed pre-transaction.

“We are thrilled to have Scott aboard to lead financial sponsor coverage for Cascadia,” added Mr. Butler. “Following a national search, Scott is the best cultural fit and the clear right choice to launch this dedicated effort at Cascadia. He will provide an unwavering focus to our approach of building deep strategic relationships with private equity and family office firms, aligning our areas of industry expertise with a sponsor’s specific investment criteria and ROI goals to deliver the best possible outcomes and opportunities for our clients and partners. There are very few firms that can successfully serve entrepreneur and family-owned businesses as well as they can institutionally-backed organizations, and I believe Cascadia is one of them. Those capabilities are strengthened with the addition of Scott.”

“I’m looking forward to working alongside a talented group of senior industry sector experts at Cascadia Capital to help institutionalize relationships with leading financial sponsors,” said Mr. Ames.  “The firm has such a strong reputation and track record across multiple industry verticals, and I’m excited to bring these capabilities to bear for the benefit of Cascadia’s financial sponsor clients.”

Mr. Ames joins Cascadia from Lazard, where he was a senior member of the Financial Sponsor Coverage group and led the firm’s West Coast efforts. He will be based in Cascadia’s Minneapolis office and will serve our clients and partners across the U.S.  To learn more or connect with Scott Ames, please visit his bio here.

James Cartales Promoted to Managing Director at Cascadia Capital

Cascadia Capital is pleased to announce the promotion of James Cartales to Managing Director in the firm’s Consumer & Retail group. As a Managing Director, Mr. Cartales will continue to provide M&A advisory and equity capital raising services to founder and family-owned companies across the ecommerce, experiential retail, and consumer services sectors.

Mr. Cartales joined Cascadia Capital in 2013 and has been involved in over 40 transactions over the last nine years at the firm. During that time, he has played a central role in Cascadia’s marquee consumer transactions, such as the sale of Air Waves to Hybrid Apparel, the sale of 2nd Ave Value Stores to BRS & Co. and Rosser Capital Partners, and Flagship Food Group’s recapitalization of La Tortilla Factory.

“James has been an integral leader of the firm for many years and has steered some of Cascadia’s largest and most complex transactions,” noted Michael Butler, Cascadia Capital Chairman & CEO. “He is tremendously deserving of this promotion and has long displayed the expertise and capabilities necessary to serve our consumer clients with the highest caliber, trusted advice and support.”

As a founding member of the Consumer & Retail practice, Mr. Cartales has been instrumental in reshaping the firm’s consumer focus, particularly in light of COVID-19’s evolving impact on the retail sector.

“We believe Consumer & Retail will continue to be a vibrant industry for Cascadia’s investment banking platform. However, the sector has undergone significant change over the past three years,” added Bryan Jaffe, Cascadia Managing Director. “James is highly knowledgeable about consumer behavior and has deep expertise in the business models that are resonating today and will likely continue to resonate in the foreseeable future, in particular within apparel and accessories and home furnishings. Additionally, his experience in unit-economic models is applicable to both the physical and digital channels that our clients sell through.”

“I am honored to receive this promotion and look forward to continuing to contribute to Cascadia’s long term growth objectives by effectively serving our exceptional clients,” Mr. Cartales added.

James Cartales is based in Cascadia’s Seattle office and serves Cascadia’s consumer clients across the U.S. For more information, visit his bio here.

Looking Back and Ahead – Thank You to our 2021 Clients & Partners!

As we head into our 23rd year in business, we are thankful to reflect on the record year we had in 2021. First and foremost, thank you to our clients, as your success is our success. We are grateful to work with so many amazing entrepreneurs, family businesses and private equity portfolio companies who have built high-quality growth companies with which we are honored to be associated.

Second, we have a deep appreciation for all of our partners in the deal-making community, who we rely on to assist us and our clients on legal, accounting, quality of earnings, tax, finance, and financial advisory matters. It takes a village to make successful transactions happen, and we are thankful to have first-class partners aligned with us to deliver the best outcomes for our clients .

Finally, thanks to the Cascadia employees, especially our dedicated team of execution bankers, for the all-in effort last year to maximize value for our clients, while expanding our platform in the Northwest and nationally. As we reflect on an extraordinary year in 2021 and forecast ahead for the coming year, we will continue to invest in expanding our geographic reach and industry expertise in 2022 and beyond.

With the support and partnership of our clients and partners, and a historic M&A market, Cascadia closed 51 transactions in 2021. If you are interested in more information on our 2021 transactions, you may download a complete list below.


  • As a national middle market firm, 60% of our 2021 clients were headquartered outside of the Northwest
  • 60% of our clients were acquired by strategic buyers and 40% by private equity firms, as we have deep access to the broad universe of buyers
  • 30% of our clients were institutionally-backed pre-transaction

Click Here to View Our Transactions Map

  • 65% of our transactions were M&A, 20% were equity capital raises, and the remainder strategic advisory mandates
  • 20% of our clients were headquartered in California, which we view as major growth market for the firm in the coming years
  • Geographic expansion was ongoing with the addition of a Nashville team and our growing Southern California office

The Value of Industry Sub-Vertical Expertise

Our team has long held deep expertise and transaction experience in niche segments across a variety of industries. We remain committed to our sub-vertical industry structure, with each of our bankers focusing tightly on specific segments of an industry. This allows us to provide the most innovative and expertise-driven service for our clients, as well as to align the right individuals within our network, across industries of common focus.


We remain bullish on the prospects for 2022 and look forward to working with you all in the coming year ahead. Please reach out if there is any way we can be helpful.

Cascadia Capital’s Winter 2021 Newsletter

As this extraordinary year draws to a close, we are seeing no end in sight for the current supercycle. The boom in growth and activity continues, fueled by unprecedented technology innovation, a surplus of cash, and low interest rates. Rising inflation and the prospect of upcoming interest rate hikes have not deterred dealmakers.

In our Winter Newsletter, we review the key factors fueling the current market dynamics and we provide three 2022 business resolutions and tips for companies looking to transact in the year ahead. We also take a closer look at the pandemic’s effect on the dealmaking environment and share how we are working with our clients to dissect their financials and identify what we call their COVID valuation gap.

Download Cascadia Capital’s Winter 2021 Newsletter


  • The supercycle continues and we expect deal activity to accelerate again in January.
  • 2021 has been an inflection year with the Fourth Industrial Revolution taking flight.
  • High prices have heightened buyer expectations; deals are restructured, re-traded, or abandoned if a company misses its numbers by a small margin.
  • Companies looking to sell need to understand their COVID valuation gap to avoid surprises.

As we continue living in these historic times, our entire Cascadia team is committed to helping entrepreneur- and family-owned businesses fulfill their aspirations and capitalize on the fundamental shifts happening across all sectors.

Cascadia Capital Continues to Grow with Expansion into Nashville

Cascadia Capital, an investment bank serving middle market clients globally, continues its growth with an expansion into the Nashville market and addition of a dedicated local team covering healthcare services. This move adds to the firm’s industry depth and national coverage. Moreover, Cascadia’s healthcare team has grown significantly, and we view the expansion as a deepening of a core focus area within one of our most active practice groups.

Nashville is one of the nation’s most diverse and robust economies, and home to a multitude of middle market businesses and a thriving investor community, particularly within healthcare. The Middle Tennessee healthcare industry alone generates more than $92 billion in revenue and more than 570,000 jobs*. Coined the healthcare capital of the U.S., Nashville is a nexus of healthcare companies and investors, with tremendous innovation and a broad network of top industry players. Having boots on the ground in Nashville will allow us to better support our healthcare clients nationwide and globally.

Cascadia’s Nashville presence will be led by Vice President Vitaliy Marchenko, with a focus on expanding Cascadia’s healthcare services coverage, capitalizing on the firm’s recent transactions in women’s health and fertility and behavioral health, as well as expanding efforts within other physician practice management areas.

Since its formation, Cascadia’s healthcare practice has become a pillar of the firm’s evolution to industry centric, deep domain investment banking, having closed more than 45 transactions. The team has had the privilege of supporting over a dozen healthcare clients in the last 12 months in capital raising, buy and sell-side M&A processes. Eight of those transactions were completed in 2021.

“With all of this activity and the record hot M&A and capital markets, Cascadia is investing in growing and expanding its healthcare team for the benefit of our partners and clients,” noted Michael Butler, Cascadia Capital Chairman and CEO. “Our team in Nashville creates a dedicated local presence in a large and established market that has shown significant opportunity for the firm across the industries we serve.”

“Nashville is an ideal location for both the firm’s overall expansion and as a base for our growing healthcare services coverage,” added Kevin Cable. “The cumulative pooling of health-related innovation, talent and entrepreneurship has a compounding effect of attracting more healthcare expertise and driving new business creation and partnership. Cascadia can naturally add value to that ecosystem through our client-centric advisory work.”

Cascadia recognized a similar market concentration of medical device companies in Minneapolis, where the firm has had an office since 2015. In 2020, we welcomed Managing Director Adam Stormoen to lead the Minneapolis branch – bringing with him over 20 years of investment banking experience with medical device companies.

“We are mapping the deep industry vertical expertise on our team to geographies that are strategic to those sectors, as we believe that allows us to meet the growing needs of the industry’s players and create the most value for business owners and entrepreneurs,” added Mr. Butler.

Other markets that Cascadia is eyeing as possible expansion opportunities include Pittsburgh, Austin, and Raleigh-Durham.

* Source: Forbes, April 12, 2021: Nashville Is The Health Services Capital – Here’s Why This Explosively Growing Region Is More Than Music City USA.

Cascadia Capital’s Spring 2021 Newsletter

In the early months of 2021, the deal market has continued to accelerate with transactional activity rebounding robustly since the start of the pandemic a year ago. Deal volume and deal value have bounced backed in a v-shaped recovery across private equity (PE) funds and the broader M&A market.

In our Spring Newsletter, we review a number of factors that are converging to produce the best market we have seen since the period of 1997 through 2000. We also take a deeper dive into the surge of activity we are seeing with SPACs (special purpose acquisition companies), as well as the historic wave of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

Download Cascadia’s Spring 2021 Newsletter


  • The deal market is incredibly robust—with high volume and great valuations—thanks to a number of converging factors.
  • The high risk of capital gains or corporate tax increases in 2022 and beyond creates an important window of opportunity for company owners to consider action this year.
  • There is enormous interest in growth equity opportunities from a wider spectrum of investors, including SPACs.
  • The deal market is becoming slightly less bifurcated, with signs of activity in consumer sectors that may be poised for a resurgence.
  • Preparing for the historic wave of the Fourth Industrial Revolution needs to be a top priority for all businesses.

Cascadia Capital is available as a resource to you and your network should you wish to discuss any of our industry insights, transactions or perspectives on the broader M&A and capital markets. Please do not hesitate to contact us directly using the contact information on our team page, or you can browse bankers by industry here. You can also stay up to date with Cascadia Capital’s latest insights by following us on LinkedIn.

The Vision For Long Term Success – The Jeremy B Hill Show

From growing up in Seattle to becoming one of the leading bankers on Wall Street for firms like Morgan Stanley and Lehman Brothers, Michael returned to Seattle with the vision to develop his Cascadia Capital into the leading investment bank in the Northwest.  His leadership, long term commitment to excellence and incredible team of leaders have now become known throughout the country as the team people trust with their lives work.

Listen Now: The Jeremy B Hill Show, Episode 12 – The Vision For Long Term Success

Cascadia Capital Promotes Scott Porter and Matthew Riendeau to Managing Director

Cascadia Capital, an investment bank serving middle market clients globally, is pleased to announce the promotions of Scott Porter and Matthew Riendeau to Managing Director.

“I’m very pleased to welcome Scott and Matt to the group of nearly 20 Managing Directors at Cascadia Capital,” said Cascadia CEO, Michael Butler. “These two individuals embody Cascadia’s entrepreneurial, hardworking, and client-focused culture. They have very deep industry expertise in verticals with extremely strong growth dynamics, which allows them to provide the thoughtful, high-quality advice and counsel we pledge to all of our clients.”

As a Managing Director in the firm’s Food, Beverage and Agriculture group, Scott Porter has been instrumental in building the firm’s Agribusiness practice into one of the most active in the country. Mr. Porter has particular expertise in the Production Agriculture, Agriculture Inputs, Food Processing & Ingredients, and AgTech subsectors. He has over 10-years of dedicated Food and Agribusiness banking experience and has been involved in 35 transactions with more than $3 billion in total value since 2014.

Prior to joining Cascadia, Mr. Porter was with Moss Adams Capital and Wells Fargo Bank, where he supported clients across multiple industries, with extensive focus on Agribusiness sell-side, buy-side, financing, and strategic advisory transactions.

Since joining Cascadia in 2017, Mr. Porter has played a central role in executing some of firm’s most meaningful Food and Agribusiness transactions including the capital raise of Auvil Fruit Company, the sale of Firestone Pacific Foods, the acquisition of FruitSmart, the sale of Western Polymer Corp, and the sale of Specialty Sales, among others.

“On behalf of the entire Food, Beverage and Agribusiness group at Cascadia Capital, we congratulate Scott on this well-deserved promotion,” said George Sent, fellow Cascadia Managing Director in the Food, Beverage & Agribusiness practice. “His industry expertise, extensive network, and his ability to collaborate both internally, as well as outside of the firm, have led to great success. We look forward to partnering with Scott for years to come.”

Matt Riendeau has been a core member of Cascadia’s Technology group since 2009. He has extensive domain expertise across the software sector, and co-founded the firm’s DevOps and Sales, Marketing & Support practices.

In his decade plus career at Cascadia Capital, Mr. Riendeau has helped shape the firm’s Technology practice and executed more than 20 transactions worth over $2 billion. He has closed several seminal industry transactions, including the growth financing of Airbrake, the sale of Movere to Microsoft, and the acquisitions of Papertrail, Scout and Travis CI.

“Matt is an outstanding banker with a deep knowledge of his industry sub-verticals,” noted fellow Managing Director, Christian Schiller. “Importantly, Matt exemplifies Cascadia’s core values in his long-term and client-centric approach, assisting companies to optimize their exit, often working with them over years to add value and optimally position them to achieve their goals.”

“At Cascadia, we have worked very hard to build a culture to develop and promote our bankers and team members,” added Butler. “We have a deep bench of talented individuals throughout the organization and Scott and Matt personify our client-focused philosophy. Their promotions demonstrate our long-term commitment to cultivating our people as we expand our business for the benefit of our clients and business partners.”

Cascadia Capital’s Year-End 2020 Newsletter

As we enter the holiday season and approach year-end, a natural time for reflection and re-evaluation—particularly this year— we bring to you our final thoughts for 2020 in our Year-End Newsletter.

In this issue, we share our perspectives on the current M&A and capital markets, as well as potential implications for your business. We also provide some of the latest market data that supports our thinking.

For the “In Focus” section, our Robotics, Automation, and Artificial Intelligence practice group discusses how the pandemic has fast-tracked automation technologies and created monumental market shifts.


  • The deal market is bifurcated, with buyers laser-focused on growth.
  • For growing companies, valuations are higher and buyer interest is stronger than before the pandemic in some cases.
  • After a long and hard 2020, many business owners are using the holiday period to re-evaluate the future.
  • Automation is an incoming wave we are urging business owners (or management teams) to think about now.

No matter what challenges are thrown at us in 2021, we are excited to continue to work closely with entrepreneur-owned and family businesses to help you position yourself to thrive. In the meantime, we hope you have a safe and restful holiday period and look forward to connecting with you in the New Year.

Steady Through the Storm: Cascadia’s Year-to-Date Activity, Industry Insights, and Look Ahead

We began this year optimistically, and while that sentiment remained through our team’s discussions this year, it certainly has been challenged at times by COVID’s impact on our lives—both in the business and personal realms. Despite these obstacles, we are grateful for how 2020 is shaping up for Cascadia and our clients, and appreciative of those who have worked with us to forge ahead, focusing on bright spots amid the uncertainty in the broader economic landscape.

We are seeing successful outcomes for our clients, as valuations for growth companies that have performed well through COVID are as strong or even stronger than before the pandemic began. This dynamic has been a key driver of activity this year, and an impetus for sustained momentum in Q4.

Below, we’re sharing a few highlights of our activity and insights to-date in 2020.

  • Busier Than Ever in Q4: Transaction Activity
  • Keeping a Pulse on What’s Now and What’s Next: Sub-Vertical Insights
  • Tackling the Fourth Industrial Revolution: RAAI Practice Launch
  • Growing the Cascadia Family: Team Updates
  • Thought Leadership and COVID-19 Insights
  • Preparing for a Strong Start to 2021: A Look Ahead


Busier Than Ever in Q4

Cascadia has closed over 20 deals this year—17 of those since March. As we round the corner toward the election and the end of the year, things are busier than ever, and our team is experiencing record activity. We have a high level of active engagements, with 20 transactions under LOI and many deals set to close before the ball drops on a sparsely populated Times Square this New Year’s Eve.


Keeping a Pulse on What’s Now and What’s Next

COVID’s nuanced impacts to industry sub-segments reinforced the decision we made to organize our teams under sub-vertical focuses. Throughout 2020, we have offered sub-vertical insights from our team so those in our network can benefit from their deep industry knowledge.

Read our newest “What’s Now and What’s Next?” pieces from Erik Einwalter on momentum in the plant-based foods sector and from George Sent on how buyers are evaluating opportunities in the branded food world.

You can browse other prior sub-vertical insights below:

Tackling the Fourth Industrial Revolution: RAAI Practice Launch

With the Fourth Industrial Revolution well underway, we announced the formation of our Robotics, Automation, and Artificial Intelligence (RAAI) Practice earlier this month. As one of the nation’s first emerging growth investment banking practice groups dedicated to these sectors, our team is well-positioned to provide the nuanced M&A and capital raising guidance business owners and entrepreneurs in this sector need as RAAI technology continues to upend critical industries, resulting in permanent market shifts.

Growing the Cascadia Family

This year has reminded us all how important it is to have a dedicated team by your side as new challenges arise. Our team has grown in size and experience, with 12 new team members joining us in 2020. We welcomed the addition of three seasoned managing directors, Nicodemo Esposito, Katie Bellows, and Adam Stormoen, and celebrated the promotion of Cascadia veteran Erik Einwalter to managing director.

Nicodemo Esposito

Katie Bellows

Adam Stormoen

Erik Einwalter

Thought Leadership and COVID-19 Insights

Throughout the year, we’ve also shared our thoughts on how the Coronavirus is impacting M&A and capital markets, as well as deep dives in select industries.


Preparing for a Strong Start to 2021

Our Cascadia team remains committed to finishing 2020 with strength, supporting our clients’ objectives and closing multiple transactions in early 2021. We greatly appreciate the support of our clients and partners through this unprecedented year, and we look forward to working together to continue to help entrepreneurs and business owners create and realize value.

We are available as a resource to you and your network should you wish to discuss any of our industry sector areas of focus, transactions or insights on the broader M&A market. Please do not hesitate to contact us directly using the contact information on our team page, or you can browse bankers by industry here. You can also stay up to date with Cascadia Capital’s latest insights by following us on LinkedIn.

Trust. Experience. Independence. Results.

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