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October 1, 2019

This year’s Country Club Plaza Art Fair was full of life and color this past week! Our neighbors, the Country Club Plaza hosts their annual Art Fair the third weekend after Labor Day and every year guests come and enjoy local musicians, craft food and drinks, and contemporary art for everyone young and old!

 

 

CBIZ & MHM alongside EFL Associates were thrilled to host our annual Art Fair Social at our offices on the Plaza before the Art Fair began. We welcomed over 150 guests who enjoyed tasty treats provided by Plaza staple, Capital Grille and enjoyed the musical talents of Calvin Arsenia —a well-known local musician .

 

 

To round out the night we were pleased to offer guests a chance to win an exclusive 2019 Plaza Art Fair Banner (designed by local artists) and a record of Calvin Arsenia’s newest album.

 

 

As always, we thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity of welcoming each of our guests to our annual art fair social and thank each of you who were able to make it and hope to see everyone again next year at our Plaza Art Fair Social!

 




September 16, 2019

As summer cools down, our fall lineup of entrepreneurs are warming up started. Satisfying consumers unique needs are what both of these organizations pride themselves on by offering their clients a high quality product that it sure to deliver. More information on these companies can be found below:

ProAthlete

ProAthlete is an online B2C retailer that sells baseball bats and gloves since 1987. They weren’t always an online retailer, they started with brick and mortar stores in Parkville, MO (just up north over the river) and switched to an online based company shortly after they realized that they can reach far more customers than their brick and mortar store could. ProAthlete has a single tiered organizational structure (everybody is a manger), reduced their employee count to no more than 48 employees, has been named a heathiest employer in KC for six straight years, and offers their employees flexible work arrangements and many amenities on site as well. Their focus is solely on baseball bats and gloves, however, their competitive advantage is their shipping and customization services. Find out more about ProAthlete here.

Swappa

Swappa is a B2C used technology online reseller that opened in 2010. The firm started when the owner had a bad experience with purchasing a used cell phone. Their policy is that no junk is allowed and all listings go through an in-depth review process before buyers are allowed to view the product. With having majority of their employees working from home, it has allowed them to expand their platform to include “local swap spots” that make selling products much faster than waiting for it to be shipped. Swappa is a platform for more than just cellphones; they also sell screen protectors, camera, laptops, and other small electronic devices too. Find out more about Swappa here.

Read about our other Entrepreneurial Showcases in our local office blogs. If you are an entrepreneur interested in sharing your story during one of our lunch-n-learns, please email kcevents@cbiz.com.




September 16, 2019

This past week, we were thrilled to host a benefit cocktail event in support of the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and to promote CBIZ's sponsored tent at their annual fundraising event, Light the Night Walk on September 14th. The cocktail hour included a variety of signature cocktails which attendees got to sample and cast their vote for their favorite cocktail. The winning cocktail will be featured at our sponsored tent at Light the Night.

 

In addition to great cocktails and treats we were grateful to hear from LLS Survivor, Laura Hollar and learning about her personal battle with acute lymphoblastic leukemia in an inspirational presentation, as well as learning more about all the amazing work LLS does for its patients, survivors, and families. 

 

A big thank you to Kendra Scott for her pop-up store and a big congratulations to the raffle and silent auction winners! We were thrilled to raise close to $2,000 for this amazing organization.

 

And the winning cocktail? You had to have stop by the CBIZ tent at Light the Night to see! There's still time to support this organization! Click here for more information about Light the Night, to donate, or for more ways to get involved.




July 19, 2019

Not Just a Game: KC Sports Reduce Crime & Drive Economic Growth

On Thursday, June 27th CBIZ hosted its third quarter Executive Advantage Series, The Business of Sports: Innovations for Future Generations. The event took place in the historical 18th & Vine District at the Kansas City Urban Youth Academy.

The Academy project was announced in the summer of 2013 and opened its doors to local youths in 2017. The Academy promotes training, education, and character development through the practice of baseball and softball. Interestingly, Kansas City, Missouri leaders were eager to support the Academy for a reason that surprised the project’s manager, Kansas City Royals Senior Director of Baseball Operations, Kyle Vena.

“I did not envision reducing crime or the economic impact behind this,” Vena explained at the Q3 EAS event, “but what the City got behind immediately was having activity going on in the summer during the evening. When there is a city event going on, giving kids places to be productive and to enjoy themselves, crime drops 21%.”

This, according to Vena, was why the city invested so heavily in the Urban Youth Academy, and why the Academy is a Kansas City Parks & Recreation facility.

Kathy Nelson, President and CEO of the Kansas City Sports Commission, spoke to the EAS audience about other ways that sports have been good to our city. Nelson successfully led the initiative to make Kansas City a host of the NFL Draft, which will be coming to our city in 2023. Next, she has set her sights on the World Cup for 2026.

“If we were to host matches,” Nelson told the crowd, “it could be the equivalent of $620M coming into the city, comparable to six Super Bowls in one month. It will change Kansas City.”

Jake Reid, CEO of Sporting KC, spoke about homegrown soccer. “In the academy system if you come up through the academy you don’t have to do a draft. You just get signed. The entire youth soccer program is based out of Swope Soccer Village. At some point in the next 5-7 years we would love six to eight players who are homegrown.”

Tyler Epp, VP of Business Development for the Kansas City Chiefs, was persuaded to talk just briefly about record-breaking quarterback Patrick Mahomes, who recently decided to buy a house and settle down in Kansas City permanently. “Before he bought the house I was with him and he said that he hoped the community would appreciate the fact that he loves living here. He said, ‘I love living here, I want to live here, this is my kind of place.’”

The ways in which Kansas City sports are improving the city are too many to cover in a single evening’s presentation. However, other topics covered were sports camps that foster STEM learning, sports betting, the evolution of sports technology, and major league sports’ continued effort to expand internationally.

Don't miss out on the next Executive Advantage Series event on October 10, 2019. More details to come for the topic, when, and where. Please email kcevents@CBIZ.com for any additional questions.




December 13, 2016

For the second year in a row, the CBIZ Florida offices sponsored the ACG Capital Connection Conference in Amelia Island. This year’s conference, held November 15-16, attracted more than 450 attendees from 26 states to the Ritz-Carlton. The CBIZ Transaction Advisory Services (TAS) group was present and sponsored charging stations at the event.

Our CBIZ TAS professionals assist with decision-making throughout the transaction process. They stand at the ready to assist you with due diligence, quality of earnings reports or by providing financial and business services during the lifetime of your investment. With responsive service, a personalized approach and team continuity, they deliver a full suite of services to get you from deal evaluation through post-sale transition.

Contact Dave Enick, Southeast Transaction Advisory Leader, for more information on how to keep you connected to your complex transactions.




November 10, 2016
Oct 30, 2016 
By Robert Karon

7 Tips on Achieving Zero-Tax Estate Planning Through Charitable Giving

Philanthropy has its advantages

How charitable should I be? What will my legacy be? What values can I teach my children and grandchildren? What do I have passion for? These are some of the questions clients start asking themselves in the autumn of their lives.

Estate planning is an intimate yet challenging process. Deciding who to entrust and bequeath your legacy to is among the largest decisions our clients will face in their lives. 

Many times clients feel that they've given enough to their children, or that even if they wanted to donate to charity, they don't know the intricacies involved. Regardless of the end result, clients always want to eliminate taxes from the picture and spend their savings as they choose, not as the government does. 


Robert Karon is a managing director at CBIZ MHM.

Click here to read the full article.





June 1, 2016

Information security presents a particular challenge to hospitals, physician practice groups, ambulatory care centers and other healthcare organizations. Unauthorized users have shown high interest in healthcare records and data, and according to the Ponemon Institute, the cost of breached healthcare data can be upwards of $363 per record. Additionally, healthcare organizations have rigorous compliance requirements they must regarding protection of patients’ sensitive data.

Securing information from hacker groups and staying compliant with federal agencies requires a robust risk management strategy. A key component of any risk approach is to focus on the areas of highest interest to your organization. The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), information technology and physical loss of data number among the three most common information security risks healthcare organizations are up against. Steps should be taken to evaluate these three areas and the processes your organization is using to manage them. Read the full article.




May 19, 2016

On June 2nd the Kansas City CFO group will host their second quarter breakfast event, featuring retiring Burns & McDonnell CEO, Greg Graves.

During this interactive discussion, Greg will focus on the explosive growth Burns & McDonnell has experienced over the last 12 years, the finance role and how it plays into leadership and growth, and much more!

For more information and to register, click here.




May 12, 2016

On Thursday May 12th, the Kansas City Construction Practice kicked off their summer breakfast event series with a discussion focused on Key Employee Incentive and Retention Plans – Creating a Motivated Management Team.

Key employees can be hard to find and even harder to keep. High-caliber employees drive the generation of profit and enterprise value, and can be a vital piece in a successful ownership transition. As a business owner, identifying these employees, understanding what motivates them to remain loyal, and encouraging them to stay the course, is critical to your company’s future, your financial independence and your personal legacy.

 While higher pay seems like the best answer, it doesn’t stop competitors from offering even higher pay or better opportunities, it doesn’t encourage the leadership mentality and it doesn’t invoke loyalty – in many cases an incentive or retention plan may be the best solution.  It is important to first understand what motivates your high-caliber employees and then design an effective plan that will benefit both the employer and employee. During our discussion today, Joyce Farris outlined a variety of different plan options and decisions to weigh as you go down this path.  To summarize, no matter what type of plan you institute, the plan should: 

  • Motivate key employees to attains goals and as they do, the company value should increase;
  • “Handcuff” the key employee to the company;  
  • Outline meaningful and realistic objectives that are well-communicated;
  • Provide substantial benefits and should be a win for both the employer and employee; and 
  • Provide specific guidelines on how to achieve the benefit (s).

To receive a copy of today’s presentation, for questions on this topic or for additional information, please contact Joyce Farris at 816.945.5121 or jfarris@cbiz.com

Save the Date for Part II in the Construction Breakfast Series: Employee Stock option Plans (ESOPs) in the Construction Industry, July 12th.




April 5, 2016

Originally featured in Thinking Bigger Magazine - March 2015

As a small business owner, there may come a time, if it hasn’t already, when you need money and you need it now.

There are a variety of funding options available: banks, home equity, the SBA, friends and family, investors, accounts receivable factoring, credit cards—the list goes on and on.

However, what if you have exhausted all of those sources and still have a short-term need for cash? As you begin the quest to find financing, you may consider alternative funding—an option becoming increasingly popular for small businesses across the country. 

 Because the traditional banking system’s regulations have made it increasingly difficult, time-consuming and, in some cases, impossible for a small business to get quick funding from their bank, this niche financing  industry has emerged, filling a need that many  primary funding resources have overlooked. 

What Exactly Is Alternative Funding?

Lending Club and Kabbage are two examples of companies providing alternative funding services. These, as well as other organizations in this niche, are primarily online resources focused on providing fast and flexible short-term financing to small businesses.

Typical lending ranges from $10,000 to $100,000. After the process has started, it usually takes about a day for the company to receive financing, assuming all the funding conditions have been met.

Kansas City is actually home to an alternative funder, CapFusion. Though the company provides funding to small businesses across the country, the company’s founders are based in Kansas City. And they may pay extra attention if they receive an application from a business that is located here, too.

Why Isn’t Everybody Using Alternative Funding?

There are pros and cons to all funding options, but the main cons associated with alternative funding include the associated costs, the dollar limits and the relative experience of the lender.

The costs of these loans can be significantly more than annualized rates associated with conventional financing. Using alternative funding, a typical transaction’s annualized interest expense is anywhere from 30 percent to 50 percent. Remember, there is a reason this niche is referred to as “alternative funding” and not primary funding.

Additionally, the players in this space typically lend in much lower dollar amounts than other types of financing. The thought behind this being, once a company has stabilized its cash flow and has time to patiently search for the best conventional financing arrangement, it will no longer need alternative financing. 

Lastly, as a relatively new niche, many companies in this space are relatively young. Some small business owners simply may prefer working with more established, well-recognized institutions.

What You Should Do

As if running a business doesn’t present enough challenge to the small business owner, I’ll add one more. It is important to understand all the financing options available to you and the pros and cons before you make a decision. Put in the time and effort to analyze your alternative financing options, the same way you would research other goods and services.

While working with an online alternative funding source may be your best solution, make sure your needs align with the company’s capabilities, and make certain you are working with the lending company that will be providing the financing, versus a broker, which will lead to substantially more costs.

Learn more about the author of this article, Daniel Kjergaard and our Entrepreneurial Services Group.




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