The Schwartz name is synonymous with the automotive aftermarket. It started with Mort Schwartz, an engineer by training who served as chairman and CEO of four different automotive aftermarket companies from the 60s to the 90s. Mort’s service to the aftermarket, including as a member and chair of various aftermarket committees, spans more than 40 years, and now his son, Rick, is following in his footsteps to make the Schwartz name a leader in M&A advising and business growth strategies in the industry.
Rick received his MBA from USC’s Marshall School of Business, and while his father grew and ran companies in the aftermarket, Rick’s career spans multiple industries working in management positions for the likes of Macy’s, Nestle and The Upper Deck Company early in his career. He gained C-suite level experience as the COO of a health and fitness company before joining forces with his dad to create Schwartz Advisors, an M&A and growth consultant for companies in the automotive aftermarket.
In some ways, we sat around the dinner table one day and my dad said, I’ve got an idea. What do you think about this?” Rick explains. “One of [his goals was] to start a company that would be an advisor to the industry. That’s a company that didn’t exist when [he] owned his WDs. At the time I was running a company in San Diego1, and he knew that I wanted to do something more entrepreneurial and something that touched on the private equity world. He wanted to see something that could really provide value to the industry.”
In 2006, Schwartz Advisors was born, and since then, the firm has added 12 industry experts from different segments to consult on various deals and strategies. In this episode of AMN Drivetime, sponsored by AISIN, Rick delves into:
- The reasons why he initially studied international relations (1:00)
- Lessons he learned from working at large companies in different industries early in his career (1:44)
- How Schwartz Advisors was born (2:54)
- The breadth and depth of Schwartz Advisors’ expertise (4:02)
- Trends in M&A in the macroeconomy and the automotive aftermarket (8:02)
- The types of business that are a good fit for the “buy-side” and “sell-side” of acquisitions (10:22)
- Lessons Rick learned from his father, Mort (12:42)
- Rapid Fire questions (14:18)