Event Calendar

Thursday, February 9, 2023

Monthly Briefing: How to Stand Out - A Guide to M&A Value Creation From the Buyer’s Perspective

Start Date: 2/9/2023 8:30 AM EST
End Date: 2/9/2023 10:15 AM EST

Venue Name: Westwood Country Club

800 Maple Ave E
Vienna, VA  United States  22180

Organization Name: SECAF Events

Julia Nelson
Email: info@secaf.org
Phone: 703-574-1117

Monthly Briefing: How to Stand Out - A Guide to M&A Value Creation From the Buyer’s Perspective 

  • Why do some businesses sell for outsized multiples, while others never transact?
  • Why do some companies receive constant acquisition overtures, while other never get a phone call?

If you have ever wondered what it takes to stand out in the eyes of a buyer, this session is for you. In this panel discussion, you will hear from experienced professionals who invest in differentiated GovCon small businesses. Between them, they have evaluated hundreds of companies, and invested in dozens of high-performing small businesses. They will share insights into what makes some businesses command a premium valuation, while others are passed by. Emphasis will be placed on how you as a business leader can use these insights to inform your strategy, regardless of whether a planned exit is in your future.

Among other topics, we will cover:

  • Valuation myth busting
  • Differentiation– is it in the eye of the beholder?
  • How to cultivate differentiation through strategic planning
  • Things to watch out for on your path

This conversation is tailored to CXOs at any growth stage, whether you are actively contemplating an exit or are merely curious about what it takes to achieve a differentiated outcome. The insights gained from this session will not be limited to just M&A, but will help your business stand out to customers, partners, and potential employees as well.

Moderator:  Meghan Gifford - Vice President of Corporate Development & Strategy, Octo
  • Gil Dussek - CEO, Gunnison Consulting Group
  • Morgan Higgins – Principal, Blue Delta Capital Partners
  • Erin-Michael Gill - MBA , Managing Director, Genaesis, LLC - New Speaker


Gilbert Dussek is the Chief Executive Officer of Gunnison Consulting Group, also serving on its Board of Directors. He is an accomplished and experienced executive with a successful track record in the federal contracting industry, delivering complex solutions to Federal and State government clients and partnering to achieve their most important mission objectives. Dussek was appointed as CEO in August 2019 and brings over 18 years of wide-ranging public sector experience in the Federal Civilian, Intelligence Community and State & Local markets, demonstrating proficiency in driving strategic growth, business transformation and operations.

Dussek has significant hands-on business experience as a seasoned operations executive, serving in profit and loss leadership roles of increasing responsibility over the course of his career at both public and private companies. Preceding Gunnison, Dussek spent eight years at SRA International, CSRA Inc. and General Dynamics Information Technology. Prior to that, Dussek worked for Lockheed Martin Corporation supporting the Information Systems & Global Solutions business unit as well as Corporate Headquarters.

Dussek holds a Bachelor of Science from Carnegie Mellon University and Masters of Science from The George Washington University.

Morgan Higgins joined Blue Delta as a Principal in 2019.  She has been very actively involved Blue Delta Portfolio Companies, as well as sourcing new investment opportunities. Blue Delta Capital Partners provides minority equity and partners with founders to help grow their businesses. They have a particular focus on providing value beyond capital including tuck-in M&A ideas, talent, strategy, pipeline opportunities and more. Prior to Blue Delta, Ms. Higgins was an Executive Director at JPMC and one of the GovCon industry’s most prominent and successful commercial bankers, leading the banks efforts, locally and nationally, for the sector.    Ms. Higgins holds a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from James Madison University.

Erin-Michael Gill is the Founder and Managing Director of Genaesis and is an appointed White House advisor, serving as the elected chairman of a congressionally mandated advisory committee on international trade.

Mr. Gill has served as an appointee in the Obama administration on the industry trade advisory committee on Intellectual Property Rights, providing trade policy advice to the President of the United States through the US Trade Rep and US Secretary of Commerce. He was re-appointed in the Trump administration and elected Chairman of the Committee, and most recently appointed to a third, four-year term in the Biden administration where he was again, re-elected as Chairman.

Mr. Gill has advocated for improved economic infrastructure at the United Nations and has provided detailed policy guidance to three Administrations on high-priority trade agreements including TPP, USMCA, and the “Stage One” trade agreement with Japan. His insights have been featured in outlets including Bloomberg Television, the Wall Street Journal, the Financial Times, and Forbes.

Mr. Gill was previously CEO of a big data analytics company supporting the US intelligence community and has a diverse, innovation-focused background. His work as an intellectual property subject matter expert supported Vector Capital’s $242M stake in Technicolor as well as Scotiabank’s $1.1B valuation increase of Blackberry. He has led the strategic review of pharmaceutical product candidates for a compounding pharmacy spin-out, as well as the development of nano-fiber allergen barrier products at DuPont.

Erin-Michael earned bachelor’s degrees in astronomy and physics from Benedictine College and an MBA from the MIT Sloan School of Management with a teaching assistantship for the graduate course "Topics in US-China Relations." 

Meghan Gifford is the Vice President of Corporate Development and Strategy at Octo, where she helps drive inorganic and organic growth initiatives. Before Octo, she was a Principal at Wolf Den Associates, the leading strategy and management consulting firm focused on helping federal market participants accelerate their growth. At Wolf Den, she focused on inorganic growth and led engagements across the federal M&A ecosystem.

Since 2014, Meghan has advised dozens of strategic acquirers and financial sponsors on billions of dollars of transaction value across defense, intelligence, civilian, and national security domains. Her federal market expertise is rooted in hands-on experience with strategic planning, capture and proposal, organizational optimization, and other organic growth initiatives.  

Meghan is currrently serving as the Chair of the SECAF Board of Directors.

Meghan is an alumna of Duke University with a B.A. in Public Policy and a Certificate in Markets and Management Studies.
  • $40 Register by 12:00 pm on February 7th
  • $50 After 12:00 pm on February 7th
  • $80 Register by 12:00 pm on February 7th
  • $90 After 12:00 pm on February 7th

***IMPORTANT: SECAF Health Policy for In-Person Events***

Before you register, please review the current SECAF Health Policy. If we can help answer any additional questions, please reach out to info@secaf.org

Online Registration

Registration is Closed
Closed: 2/8/2023 12:00 PM

Add to my calendar


Upcoming Events

View All Events