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Private Credit Arrives in the Lower Middle Market: A Conversation with Bridgepoint’s Matt Plooster


Today’s guest is Matt Plooster, founder and CEO of Bridgepoint, a boutique investment bank based in Omaha, Nebraska. We start the conversation with a background on private credit and its origins. From there we proceed to cover its growth, its arrival in the lower middle market, and how business owners can think about its features, risks, utility and applicability. We close out the conversation by getting into specific lower middle market transactions where private credit has been central to the outcome.

Discussion points:

  • The rise of private credit in the private market
  • How non-bank financing has evolved post-2008 crisis
  • Mezzanine vs. unitranche debt
  • Comparing private credit to traditional bank lending
  • Non-control transaction success with private capital
  • Case study demonstrating the effectiveness of buyout transactions
  • Long-term engagement benefits
  • The appeal of fewer covenants and no personal guarantees
  • Crucial role of pre-market quality of earnings
  • Private credit’s future potential for market inefficiencies

Masters in Small Business M&A is produced by the team at Axial ( Axial makes it easy for small business owners to confidentially discover, research, and connect with top-ranked M&A advisors and capital partners. Masters in Small Business M&A explores the vast world of small business acquisitions, interviewing a mix of proven and emerging owners, operators, acquirers, and M&A advisors whose strategies and methods are being put to the test.

If you enjoy the podcast, we’d love a review on Apple or Spotify. If you’d like to go deeper, head to, where there are dozens of recorded Axial member roundtables, downloadable tools for dealmakers, quarterly lower middle market investment banking league-table rankings, and other useful information. If you’re a business owner, professional acquirer, or M&A advisor, you can start using Axial for free at

Click the link below to join the podcast newsletter list. We’ll notify you when a new episode is published. And if you have an interesting guest in mind, feel free to drop us a line.

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Matt Plooster LinkedIn

Bridgepoint Investment Banking

Peter Lehrman LinkedIn

Axial Website 

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