Frank Connolly is a New York-based partner in TechCXO’s Finance & Operations practice. He has been a CFO for public companies, VC startups, and PE-owned firms. He was also a principal in a PE investment firm and an M&A banker in a boutique NYC-based investment bank. Frank has executed 25 equity and debt transactions as a principal executive, private equity investor and M&A advisor with a total value of $2 billion including public equity and private debt offerings, as well as the purchase and sale of public and PE-owned companies.
Founders, Boards, investors and executive leadership teams from marketing, media, advertising, market research, professional services, technology, and customer information services companies most frequently call on Frank to help them as an advisor and interim or fractional CFO. He provides value in the following areas:
- Advice on M&A transactions
- Strategy for Successful Fundraising
- Insight on best practices in finance and operations
- Counsel on policy and procedure
- Guidance for systems implementations
- Investigation of tax strategies
- Benchmarking management compensation
- Industry insights for the marketing, media, market research landscape.
Throughout his career, he has executed transformational M&A transactions, provided strategic insights, built highly effective teams, designed new operating/financial procedures, restructured balance sheets, rolled out scalable business process flows, realigned costs, and implemented a variety of systems to support high growth businesses.
Frank began his career with Accenture in the New York Metro practice. This provided an excellent grounding in the use of technology by businesses to create value. His clients included General Electric, Pitney Bowes, Marsh & McLennan, US Tobacco, American Can and Xerox. After his start in consulting, Frank joined The Dun & Bradstreet Corporation, which at that time consisted of 35 operating units across the information, marketing, and media spectrum where he held various corporate HQ finance positions.
While still a division of Dun & Bradstreet, he transferred to Donnelley Marketing, a B2C marketing business with three units in marketing technology/consumer data, promotion services and direct marketing. He continued as CFO with Donnelley Marketing after it was sold to a private equity sponsor. Frank was instrumental in creating value at Donnelley through exiting unprofitable product lines, reducing expenses and optimizing the balance sheet. The marketing technology/data business was subsequently sold to First Data Corp., and the consumer promotions and direct marketing units were sold to Cox Enterprises resulting in a combined 11x equity return.
He then joined DigaComm, the private equity group that had purchased Donnelley. Frank evaluated dozens of PE and late-stage VC investment opportunities in North and South America. Four investments were made during Frank’s tenure focused on emerging internet marketing services companies. Following DigaComm, Frank joined Modem Media, a public internet marketing pioneer as CFO after the severe industry downturn. He was pivotal in returning that company to top-line growth and achieving profitability. The enterprise value of the company doubled during his 3-year tenure. Modem was acquired by Digitas.
He was CFO at Harris Interactive, a public market research firm that pioneered the use of the internet to collect and interpret custom research data for clients. Harris was acquired by Nielsen.
Frank was an investment banker at AdMedia Partners, an M&A advisory firm in New York, for five years. He would source clients, find buyers, and execute transactions. He closed 9 deals during his time there, focused on marketing services, media, and market research.
He was CFO at a full-service agency, Media Storm, that more than doubled its billings from $200 million to $550 million in the four years since he started. He was instrumental in building a team, establishing operating workflows & processes, and implementing new financial and media buying systems to support this hyper-growth. Media Storm was acquired by the Merkle division of Dentsu.
Frank was CFO of FocusVision where he introduced the use of operating metrics to improve the profitability of the professional services and software implementation businesses. FocusVision has been acquired by Forsta.
He was the CFO at Viamedia for the past four years as part of a turnaround effort. While aligning costs with revenue and optimizing working capital, Frank’s accomplishments provided liquidity for the digital transformation of the company to transition its advertiser clients and media technology clients to new digital marketing solutions and TV advertising technology platforms.
Frank has and MBA in Finance from Cornell University and a BA in Economics from Stony Brook University.