Wednesday, May 22, 2024 May 22, 2024
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How Dallas Business Leaders Are Adapting to Overcome Financial Challenges.

Amidst challenges, Texas businesses adapt and prepare: Q&A with UMB Bank’s Jeff Strasner
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How is the Dallas business landscape evolving?

The business climate remains strong. The diverse makeup of the local economy is allowing it to continue to evolve and grow, even with the headwinds of higher rates and slowdown in certain industries.

What are some of the items you are advising clients on?

Financial forecasting and planning

The rise in interest rates was not a surprise, but it came fast and required companies to spend more time making sure they were prepared to operate in a higher-cost environment. Focusing on managing debt levels and fixed, versus floating rates, all became real-time discussions for our clients.

It was also a time for companies to run multiple forecasts to ensure they had adequate liquidity to support their business. Financial forecasting is more important than ever as it not only helps clients gain a better understanding of what is ahead, but it’s also a healthy practice to aid in building and maintaining a growth mindset—even in challenging times. I encourage business owners to consistently stress their projections as rates, the economy and the business climate continue to be fluid.

Business planning solutions
M&A and ownership transition activity continues to be an active topic with Dallas companies. An overabundance of equity and debt capital and a strong business climate continues to open opportunities for both buyers and sellers in Texas.

At UMB, we specialize in helping business owners evaluate their options—either through an exit or by taking on debt—to simplify their ownership structure. We have seasoned professionals who can help business owners achieve their financial objectives and a model that can provide necessary capital for a company looking to acquire another business. Our ability to prepare companies in a way that feels seamless from the client’s perspective is invaluable for those needing full-service advice and execution.  

What is UMB’s approach in 2024?

Our mindset remains the same as it has throughout our 110-plus year history, and that is continuing our growth with a customer-first mindset. This year, that includes not only growing the bottom line, but also the Dallas team.

We recently added an industry veteran in Todd Burns as our market president, and we will continue to add new bankers, including a middle market team lead, to our almost 100 local associates.

We are also working with more private equity firms and family offices. From, providing fund service administration and limited partner subscription lending all the way to portfolio company capital and support, we are uniquely positioned to deliver a level of support and service that will change the landscape for us.

Concluding thoughts?

The lending environment in Texas remains strong, and we are increasing our market share, demonstrating our client-first approach wins in this market. A client recently described UMB as having a “get it done attitude,” and that statement perfectly embodies our culture and drive to continue helping businesses in throughout Dallas-Fort Worth.

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