Kenneth is the founder and Managing Partner of High Rock Partners, Inc. He is an entrepreneur and subject matter expert in mergers, acquisitions and financing of emerging growth and middle market companies. He combines his first-hand experiences in financing, building and selling multiple businesses for himself with more than fifteen years of developing growth strategies and doing deals …all to partner with CEO’s to make key strategic decisions; navigate and execute on transitions of ownership; accelerate growth to the next level; or to reposition their company.
His past positions included President of JPS Communications, Inc., a fast growth technology subsidiary of the Raytheon Company and President / CEO of an electronics manufacturer that he founded and grew to $22 million. He was a director for a Research Triangle Park area investment bank focused on raising capital for early stage and middle-market companies during the late 1990’s.
He was a member of the Young Presidents Organization (YPO) ; the founding YPO Sponsor of the Entrepreneurs Organization (EO formerly YEO) in the Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina Chapter; a member of the Association for Corporate Growth; a former member of the board of directors of the North Carolina Technology Association and former director of the Partnership for Defense Innovation (the parent of the Defense & Security Technology Accelerator). He founded the Research Triangle Chapter of the National Funding Association . He is a member of the board of advisors of the Alliance of M&A Advisors and is an active member of the board of directors of Youth Camps for Christ, Inc. and a member of Kingdom Advisors.
Kenneth created and taught a graduate level course at Boston College in connection with the Hult International Business School in Boston (formerly the Arthur D. Little School of Management) titled “Managing Emerging Growth Companies”. In addition, he periodically teaches graduate level electives titled “Financing Early Stage & Middle-Market Companies” and “Middle Market M&A” at North Carolina State University in Raleigh, NC. In addition, Marks lectures at Depaul University in Chicago and Pepperdine University in California as part of the Merger & Acquisition certification program.
He is the lead author of “Middle Market M&A: Handbook of Investment Banking & Business Consulting“ and “Handbook of Financing Growth: Strategies, Capital Structure and M&A Transactions, 2nd Edition” both published by John Wiley & Sons, and he authored the publication “Strategic Planning for Emerging Growth Companies: A Guide for Management“. Most recently he co-authored “Value Levers: Increase the Value of Your Business from 3X to 7X“.
Kenneth has been a strategic advisor to American Express regarding its middle market initiatives, and on special assignment, Marks is a Research Advisor for American Express Global Corporate Payments in connection with their CFO Research and middle market surveys.
Kenneth obtained his MBA from the Kenan-Flagler Business School at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill, and his undergraduate studies were in electrical engineering at North Carolina State University. In addition, he has attended executive programs at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He held series 62 and 63 securities licenses. He is a Certified Merger & Acquisition Advisor (CM&AA) and holds a Corporate Finance qualification (CFq) granted by the ICAEW.