C3 Capital is an experienced SBIC mezzanine lender located in Kansas City. We have invested over $500 million in more than 80 companies since 2003. C3 provides expansion and acquisition capital to lower middle market companies across the United States, working closely with entrepreneurs and sponsors, owners and managers to execute growth strategies and enhance long-term enterprise value. The funds make $3-15 million investments in the form of subordinated debt or preferred equity in established businesses with a history of profitability. We currently manage three funds, all licensed as Small Business Investment Companies, with combined assets greater than $400 million.
C3 provides the layer of a company’s capital structure between senior debt and common equity, commonly referred to as “mezzanine” capital. For companies with a track record of profitability and sustainable cash flow that cannot obtain desired levels of bank financing, raising mezzanine capital is generally a superior alternative to raising additional common equity since mezzanine:
- Is typically less expensive than common equity
- Is far less dilutive than common equity
- Enables existing owners to maintain control
- Unlike common equity, does not require a forced sale of the company at the time of repayment/redemption
As a business philosophy, nothing is more important to us than our reputations. We have invested in over 80 small businesses since 2003, and we invite all potential partners to use our portfolio companies as references. Because of our backgrounds and experience, we understand the needs of small businesses, and, unlike many mezzanine funds which prefer to be passive, we enjoy taking as active a role as needed to help our portfolio businesses achieve their goals.
Finally, because the principals of C3 typically invest at least 20% in each fund we raise, we believe our interests are uniquely aligned with both our investors and our portfolio companies, generally the largest assets of the entrepreneurs we support.