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ACG Unveils First Ever “Middle-Market Growth Policy Agenda"

April 01, 2013, 07:19 AM
Filed Under: Association News

The Association for Corporate Growth (ACG) released its first “Middle-Market Growth Policy Agenda,” a statement of the organization’s official position on relevant legislative and regulatory policy topics directly affecting the investment and growth of middle-market companies.

“ACG supports policies that foster and incentivize private capital formation and investment,” said Richard Jaffe, partner, Duane Morris. Jaffe, co-chair of the ACG Middle-Market Voice Committee and continued, “The middle market is the principal engine of the U.S. economy. Its businesses produce more new jobs than large or small businesses. With 43 million employees, the vitality of the middle market is critical to the health of American families, communities and the economy.”

The development of ACG’s policy agenda is an outcome of ACG’s new strategic plan, which was developed with significant member input and research. ACG members and chapter leaders came to the consensus that ACG with its more than 14,500 members had the resources, capacity and responsibility to be an effective advocate on behalf of growing middle-market companies.

“As the leading organization for middle-market professionals, ACG is best positioned to both inform and educate policymakers on how private capital investment is essential in growing companies,” said Charles J. Morton, Jr., partner, Venable and ACG Chairman of the Board. “ACG has an obligation to represent the voice of the investors, lenders, owners and executives of middle-market companies, which employs 1 in 20 employees in the U.S."

ACG’s Policy Agenda was officially released during the “Middle-Market Growth Policy Summit” held on March 7 in Washington, DC. Among the issues included in the ACG Policy Agenda are the following:

  • Comprehensive Business Tax Reform (CBTR)

ACG will aggressively represent the voice of the middle market in the process of comprehensive business tax reform, with a focus on the areas which directly impact capital investment and formation.

  • Deductibility of Interest on Corporate Debt.

ACG believes that debt financing is critical to business expansion, acquisitions, investment, inventory, and cash flow management and provides an important form of needed funding. ACG opposes efforts to eliminate the long-standing deductibility of interest as a normal cost of doing business.

  • Dodd-Frank

The Dodd-Frank financial reform law mandates 447 new rules, only one third of which have been finalized. ACG will seek to replace or eliminate areas of Dodd-Frank that do not work and do not achieve their intended goals and assist and monitor rule-making to ensure clarity and fairness to middle-market investors.

  • Clarify JOBS Act Regulations

ACG will focus on Rule 506 (solicitation of accredited investors) to ensure clarity and fairness for middle market investors. Some have voiced concern about the SEC’s pace of rule development and potential to misinterpret legislative intent.

In conjunction with the announcement of this agenda, ACG will embark on proactive communications outreach to elected officials and others who make and shape the policies that impact middle-market investment,” said Gretchen Perkins, partner, Huron Capital Partners and co-chair of the ACG Middle-Market Voice committee. “The story of the middle market is one of economic growth, and that is a vital story that is important to communicate widely.”

Driving Growth: The Impact of Private Capital on the U.S. Economy, a comprehensive report that reveals how private capital-backed companies performed on sales revenue and job growth by comparison to all other U.S. businesses between 1995 and 2010 was also released at the Middle-Market Growth Policy Summit.

Download the complete agenda here.

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