In order to provide you and the investment community an update, what follows is a “learning lesson article” that provides each of you an update on the continuous disingenuous and deceitful behavior of the LitCap company, specifically their leaders Hugh Plummer and Britton Holland.

Preamble:

First of all, thank-you to the more than 200 of you professionals whom have inquired about Ephor’s pending arbitration filing on a success fee obligation breach, and its current status.

In order to provide you and the investment community an update, what follows is a “learning lesson article” that provides each of you an update on the continuous disingenuous and deceitful behavior of the LitCap company, specifically their leaders Hugh Plummer and Britton Holland.

Please “stay tuned” in that in the very near future as a result of our PR efforts, we expect this article and journal articles along with other editorials to be published in local, national, and trade publications. Please enjoy the article and Learn!

 

The Impact of Unprincipled & Disingenuous Management Behavior.

Since our founding in 2002, Ephor Group has proudly worked alongside 33 firms and countless institutional investors in providing strategic management and operating skills along with the financial engineering necessary to create successful high-growth-oriented companies. In fact, 21 of the companies that Ephor has worked with have been recognized by Inc. magazine and other publications in the “fast-growing” category. We could not be prouder of what Ephor has accomplished on behalf of our partner companies, co-investors, and institutional investors.

Over these many years, we have faced many challenges and barriers as we have executed our mission to create wealth-generating technology-enabled business services organizations. Likewise, we are equally proud that Ephor has never, in our nearly 15 years of service to emerging high-potential service organizations, had a legal action filed against us, nor have we had to resort to third-party litigation methods to resolve a business dispute, until recently. Unfortunately, in April 2016, Ephor Group was left with no other recourse, but to file a binding arbitration action against Affiliated Solutions, LLC, (doing business as LitCap), to resolve what, in our opinion, is a very straightforward issue.

Ephor and Affiliated Solutions, Inc. (LitCap) signed a Boardwalk Services Agreement in March 2015. Within that agreement’s scope of activities, Ephor was to provide access to or facilitate contractually obligated relationships between LitCap and, potential investors or providers of capital. While providing these services, Ephor observed many instances of what we believed to be unprofessional, unprincipled, unethical behavior and disingenuous communications on the part of the individual LitCap leaders. Therefore, Ephor was left with no choice, but to terminate its relationship with LitCap to comply with our stated values and principles and our ethical obligations to the institutional investment community.

Under the terms of the Boardwalk Agreement, distinct “tail period” and success fee payment provisions (valid until May 11, 2017) apply to roughly 115 potential financial sponsors that Ephor worked with on the LitCap opportunity. Unfortunately, following the agreement termination, in spite of numerous good-faith verbal and written requests over a five-month period during which time LitCap was asked by Ephor to provide the necessary information required to calculate the success fee obligations, LitCap’s leaders, including Britton J. Holland, President, and Hugh J. Plummer Jr., CEO, in our opinion, chose to virtually ignore Ephor’s attempts to resolve the matter and provide the relevant information required. Therefore, Ephor was left with no choice but to file the arbitration claim.

What is even more pertinent and disappointing is that since the arbitration filing, the LitCap leadership has continued this unnecessary behavior by failing, in our opinion, to truthfully represent the case facts within the legal process. Sadly and factually there are actual documented examples of overt lying in the legal process file.

An Object Lesson in Integrity, Experience and Leadership.

However, as Chairman of numerous organizations both public and private, as a professional advisor, and as an active investor, we feel what is more important is that Ephor share what successful business leaders should learn from this unnecessary situation.

Zig Ziglar, the famed author and speaker once said, "It is true that integrity alone won’t make you a leader, but without integrity you will never be a one."

To be successful business leaders, we must have integrity while being grounded in a strong set of values and principles. Without these foundational beliefs and behaviors, we have no real identity or compass to guide us.

Good companies become great companies, regardless of the size of the market opportunity, as a result of effective leaders who demonstrate a strong set of values, principles, and forthright transparency that establishes brand equities with every decision or action we take. A few examples of companies that have succeeded with these leadership charactoristics that come to mind from my career include IBM, EdwardJones, First Financial Management (FFMC), Global Integrity and Technology Service Solutions (TSS) among others.

All of these noted and branded companies have contributed to the ability of Ephor’s professionals to participate successfully in the development of 21 noted high growth-oriented business models and leadership teams. These leadership attributes are also present among Ephor’s most notable clients and/or investments including Intermedix, SmartTime, Perquest, GeBBS, and many others.

Many owners and entrepreneurs who achieve only marginal success (or failed entirely) handicapped their success by making and acting on decisions based on a leader’s ego and overzealous control behaviors, bad ethics, or simply how they “feel” at the time, versus an established set of guiding values and principles, which reflect an undisputable code of integrity. Any approach that is unprincipled, undisciplined, and absent factual transparency leads to inappropriate decisions, which equals poor leadership, and in most occasions leads to unacceptable and/or inconsistent company performance.

In our opinion, the LitCap leadership team failed to act within a set of “minimal professional standards” of values and principles, with factual transparency, and in a manner that is acceptable to the institutional investment community.

Not surprisingly, the only outcomes of this type of ineffective leadership are broken commitments, severed relationships, and unnecessary litigation.

A case study and learning lesson for all!

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