Marilyn Adler of Mizzen Capital named to 2020 Most Influential Women in Mid-Market M&A

Register now

What’s new?
After managing SBIC funds for 23 years, I finally decided to launch my own credit platform with another woman partner, Liddy Karter, whom I have known for 20 years, and Annie Li, who has worked with me for 13 years. We are focused on investing as senior secured debt in lower middle-market companies with under $10 million of Ebitda. We want to be more senior in the capital structure since we’re concerned we could have a downturn in the economy in the next year or two

How are you a champion for change?
It takes a lot of courage to resign and go out on your own but I felt that this was the right time in my life to do it. In a human resources exercise, I was asked to pretend it’s 10 years from now and you look back on your life and ask: “Is there something you will regret that you have not done?” At that moment, I realized I would regret it if I didn’t try to launch a woman-owned fund. Out of 305 SBICs across the country, there is only one SBIC more than 50 percent owned by women. I hope to change that statistic. We decided on the name of our fund as Mizzen Capital because the mizzen sail is the stability sail on a sailboat that keeps you heading in the right direction. We also liked the play on the word (MIZZ) with Ms. Adler, Ms. Karter and Ms. Li.

For reprint and licensing requests for this article, click here.