ACG LOS ANGELES: <br>L.A. Story
When it comes to size, the ACG Los Angeles chapter ranks third nationally, behind Chicago and New York. But when it comes to glamour, L.A. may have no match.
"We go out of our way to have very senior-level speakers and effective networking, but our secret sauce is very cool venues," says chapter president Andrew Apfelberg (pictured).
A case in point is the chapter's annual signature event, the Los Angeles Business Conference, which is held at the Beverly Hilton, the swanky Beverly Hills hotel that also hosts many a star-studded gala, such as the Golden Globe Awards and the Emmy Awards. With 1,200 to 1,400 attendees, the conference is one of the ACG's biggest of the year. (ACG InterGrowth, hosted by ACG Global, attracts approximately 1,800, and M&A East, hosted by ACG Philadelphia, draws roughly 1,300.) The September conference offers some of the highest-profile speakers in the country, such as former President George W. Bush and former Senator Chris Dodd (D-Conn.).
The group also typically holds two meetings each month: a breakfast panel on topics, such as restructuring, alternative financing and social media; and an evening of networking, known as "Rush Hour Networking." Impressive venues help boost attendance at these events, which compete with the myriad of attractions to be found in the nation's second largest city.
In February, the chapter's "Wine Tasting & Speed Networking" was held at the Annenberg Community Beach House, developed in the 1920s by William Randolph Hearst for his girlfriend, the actress Marion Davies. In April, the "Rush Hour Networking" event took place at the chic Oviatt Penthouse, atop the city's first skyscraper.
The group's events increasingly reflect the theme, "Deals Happen Here." Through the "Deal Spotlight," an insert in the meeting program, the chapter highlights recent deals that involve a number of members, demonstrating the value of ACG connections. There's also a "Rising Stars" program, designed to foster networking among the under-30 crowd.
"L.A. is a big city, both physically and population-wise," points out Apfelberg. "But by being in ACG L.A., the town feels small, intimate, warm and welcoming."
Year Founded: 1972
Number of Members: 660
Annual Dues: $375
Approval Required for Membership: No
President: Andrew Apfelberg, attorney at law, Greenberg Glusker Fields Claman & Machtinger LLP
The third largest chapter in the country, ACG Los Angeles hosts one of the association's biggest events, the Los Angeles Business Conference. Held in September at the Beverly Hilton hotel, the conference draws 1,200 to 1,400 attendees. The chapter's twice-monthly events offer more intimate networking opportunities, often emphasizing deals collaborated on by multiple members and taking place in attractive settings, such as historic buildings and ocean-front properties.