Success comes from experience.
The principals of Mertz Taggart have successfully completed almost 100 healthcare business transactions since 2006. We are an industry leading Healthcare M&A Firm that has first-hand experience owning and operating a healthcare company, which gives Mertz Taggart priceless insight into our clients’ businesses.
The Deal That is Right For You
We understand that selling a business is a significant financial event, with implications that can echo throughout your life. Your sale is the doorway to retirement or to future business endeavors and, ultimately, affects your personal net worth. Mertz Taggart coordinates the process from start to finish, with the goal of maximizing your company’s value. We will help present your company, weigh all factors impacting the sale, and create healthy competition among qualified buyers. By crafting a practical business sale strategy, Mertz Taggart will ensure you will maximize your exit value.
Most business owners do not have the time, experience or resources to professionally market their business. We do. Our mission is to make sure you sell to the right buyer at the right time, and knowing all the information that will help your business to achieve its maximum value.
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Meet Our Team
M&AMI – Managing Partner
Cory Mertz, M&AMI, is a managing partner of Mertz Taggart. Cory has a track record of successful transactions within the rapidly changing healthcare industry. Coupled with a wide variety of business experience including business development and operations management, Cory’s skill set has helped many healthcare entrepreneurs realize their exit planning goals.
Cory began his career at Jabil Circuit, where he was instrumental in the hyper-growth of the Fortune 500 electronics manufacturing services provider. Cory held several leadership positions while at Jabil, including managing the transition of multiple international acquisitions across Europe, South America and Mexico. This experience taught him the skills to quickly recognize opportunities, skillfully negotiate solutions, and successfully close transactions.
In 2006, Cory joined Stoneridge Partners, an M&A advisory firm that specializes in home care and hospice, as a dealmaker. While at Stoneridge, Cory had the opportunity to forge relationships with industry leaders and private equity groups nationally, and closed more than 50 healthcare transactions.
Cory has been a speaker at regional and national healthcare conferences on topics ranging from maximizing value for your company to the processes and pitfalls of selling a healthcare company.
Cory holds a BS in Mechanical Engineering magna cum laude from the University of Florida. He currently lives in Fort Myers, FL, with his wife and two children.
CM&AP – Managing Partner
Kevin Taggart, CM&AP, is a Managing Partner and co-founder at Mertz Taggart. Previously, he founded a land development and home building company, where he gained invaluable experience running all aspects of the business, including raising money, negotiating and purchasing land, planning, and rezoning, permitting and building infrastructure (roads, sewers, water, pool, clubhouse, etc.), building houses, and putting together and executing a marketing plan.
Kevin understands all aspects of running a healthcare company and brings a unique perspective to his clients: he was co-owner of a home care company. He increased volume through managing and measuring processes and systems and increased the EBITDA through topline growth and stringent cost controls. As a former agency owner with almost 200 employees, he has firsthand knowledge of the concerns owners face today. This knowledge better assists him in helping both owners and prospective buyers by implementing a genuinely client-focused strategy.
After successfully selling to a large publicly-traded company in 2010, he has been guiding other healthcare companies through the sales process. Kevin has been invited to speak at several national and regional healthcare conferences with topics ranging from the process of selling a healthcare company to maximizing value before a sale.
Kevin graduated from the University of Georgia with a BBA and majored in finance. He currently lives in the Atlanta area with his wife and three children. His hobbies include running, coaching his children’s athletic teams, and spending time with his family.
JD – Managing Director
Bruce Vanderlaan, JD, literally grew up in the health care business. For 25 years his mother was the Director of Nursing at a nursing home in Ludington, Michigan where he often accompanied her to work. After he became a practicing attorney, his mother and her business partner consulted with him about on legal issues in the Home Health Care field. This provided Bruce a unique foundation and perspective.
He began his legal career with the premier law firm in West Michigan, and has represented businesses and health care practices for 26 years. In dozens of cases he has represented numerous clients in negotiations and transactions or has acted as the closing agent in closing the deal. He doesn’t just hold a law degree, he built a successful long standing practice in the field.
Bruce holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Business Administration and is an honors graduate of the University of Detroit School of Law. He lives in Fort Myers, FL with his wife and daughter, and they enjoy sailing, skiing, running, and travel.
LMHC – Managing Director
Sandra Zervoudakis, LMHC, is an industry expert in the mental health/substance abuse market. She has worked as an operator of numerous hospitals and behavioral health treatment facilities, including ones owned/operated by HCA, Psychiatric Solutions and UHS. Sandra completed her graduate degree in mental health counseling at Nova Southeastern University and subsequently began her work in the substance abuse and mental health profession.
Over the course of 16 years, Sandra has held executive titles of CEO, Executive Director, COO, and Senior Director of various behavioral health treatment facilities. Sandra has owned and operated her own facility, which she built from inception to a stable, operational state and ultimately sold it. Sandra has led complete reorganizations to multiple large and small facilities in order to re-staff and restructure to obtain profitability. Most recently, Sandra has worked with investors to open new facilities as well as assist facilities to improve their operations and profitability. Sandra’s work has included projects with individual owners as well as private equity groups to perform confirmatory due diligence.
She has been involved in setting up innovative systems in behavioral health facilities. Over the course of her career not only have these systems been successful but have set some of the standards for best practice in both inpatient, outpatient, and laboratory settings. Sandra has proven to be a leader not only in the inpatient hospital settings and in residential treatment facilities, but also in the not-for-profit and community services spectrum. Sandra has always exemplified the commitment to serve clients and families in need with professionalism and empathy.
Sandra lives in Boca Raton, FL with her husband and three children.
Anke Stugk, Ph.D. joined Mertz Taggart as a Financial Analyst in February 2020 . Prior to joining the firm, Dr. Stugk gained experience as Head of Research at a public business development firm and as Program Chair for business and finance at a private University.
She is an accomplished researcher and analyst offering a rich mixture of experience involving critical thinking, research ability, leadership, financial analysis, and strategic planning. Throughout her career she focused on identifying new growth opportunities in public and private sectors across multiple industries.
Dr. Stugk earned her Ph.D. in Business Administration with specialization in Financial Management from Northcentral University, and holds an MBA in Finance, BA in Business Administration and Economics from Hodges University.
Crystal Hackbarth joined Mertz Taggart in 2015 and leads the inside business development efforts at the firm.
Since joining the firm, Crystal has been a key team member and has played an integral role in the growth of the firm. Her expertise is monitoring industry-wide shifts, managing CRM databases and leading market research initiatives. With her entrepreneurial approach Crystal expanded her role to in- and out-bound sales and has initiated multiple successful transactions for Mertz Taggart.
Crystal is a licensed Real Estate agent in Florida and holds a degree from Ridgewater College. She lives in Fort Myers, FL, with her husband and daughter.
Our team members are ready to answer your questions. Call us or use the form to send us an email!
2161 McGregor Blvd.
Fort Myers, FL 33901
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