Helping a Family Business Grow and Transition to the Next Generation

Challenge:

Brian Fey and his brother represent the second generation of owners for their family’s Blackshear, Georgia-based group of McDonald’s stores, which was started by their father, Rick. Brian now serves as Organizational CEO and Rick is semi-retired, but while Rick was holding the reins, he decided his stores could benefit from the assistance of dedicated accounting professionals. He found the fit he was looking for in Sparkmon. Brian explains, “A real factor is the fact that Sparkmon is nearly exclusively McDonald’s-focused. They aren’t trying to keep up with the nuances of many different industries, so their attention isn’t split and their work isn’t generic one-size-fits-most. Working with hundreds of operators, they are a part of the very complex McDonald’s workings. Sparkmon is well-versed and on top of the McDonald’s world and makes recommendations that make sense for us because they know us. And since they have clients spread out across multiple regions and co-ops, they have a unique perspective that provides us insight into how our area is looking versus others.”

Solution:

Sparkmon’s approach allows the Feys to better focus on creating key relationships and cohesive business strategies. “They take care of our standard accounting needs as well as anything that pops up when there are corporate, federal or state changes. This frees us up to focus on more strategic needs, and they’re there to help guide us through those as well,” says Brian. In addition, the firm holds an annual meeting with the Feys to review the state of the their holdings and strategize for the next year. “Having the annual meetings and spending a day with the team has been helpful,” says Brian. “Going through the whole package and discussing where we stand, what we are working on and what we want to do differently in the future right from the get-go has been essential.” As for ongoing communication, Brian describes it in glowing terms: “Fantastic. Anytime I have financial statements or returns an email is responded to very quickly. Rapid return calls – never a delay in getting a return call back.”

Result:

“We’ve been with Sparkmon 20 years,” Brian reports. “The quality and the personal relationships is exceptional – there is a real personal trust. There has been nothing that we have asked for that has not been provided. Even though I came in after the fact, I do not have a desire to make any change or move to anyone else.” Based on his family’s experience, Brian recommends the firm to other McDonald’s owner/operators whenever he can. “We’ve always been a champion for Sparkmon.”

Testimonial:

“I sleep well at night, no tossing and turning over worry about financial reporting or a financial calamity, because I know that Sparkmon has a hand on our company and there is nothing I need to worry about. I can spend my time making burgers.”

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