Our Story

Founded in 1999, Washington Partners and its professionals specialize in providing intermediary services for lower-middle market business owners who are contemplating exit or growth strategy opportunities. Our experienced mergers and acquisition specialists provide insight and strategies as to the right time to sell and whether or not the company is ready to sell.

We offer various services including mergers, acquisitions, divestitures, valuations, and transaction consulting.  Our client base includes public and private companies, investor groups, and management buyout groups throughout the world.

Our Team

Learn the importance of a trusted partner.

GEORGE C. CHACONAS

GEORGE C. CHACONAS

SENIOR MANAGING PARTNER

A respected entrepreneur, businessman and dealmaker, George Chaconas founded Washington Partners in 1999. He previously owned and operated a number of other businesses. Mr. Chaconas began his career as an intermediary with Professional Business Brokers, Inc., brokering small to mid-sized privately held businesses. He continued his career working with other merger & acquisition firms including National Business Brokers and Equitable Business & Financial Services. In addition to his duties as Senior Managing Partner of Washington Partners, Mr. Chaconas serves as head of the Southeastern Automotive Division and National Harley-Davidson & PowerSports Division of Performance Brokerage Services, which he joined in 2012. Mr. Chaconas attended the University of Miami and received a BA in Finance from the University of South Florida. He is a member of the M&A Source, where he earned the prestigious Mergers & Acquisitions Master Intermediary (M&AMI) designation and is a member of the International Business Brokers Association (IBBA) and has earned its designation as a Certified Business Intermediary (CBI). He is also an active member of the Association for Corporate Growth (ACG) and Alliance of Merger & Acquisition Advisors (AM&AA). Mr. Chaconas is a Licensed Real Estate Broker in the states of Florida, North Carolina, Georgia and Alabama. Additionally, Mr. Chaconas is a Licensed Health, Life & Variable Annuity Insurance Agent with the Florida Department of Insurance.

PETER R. SCHMEDT

PETER R. SCHMEDT

SENIOR MANAGING DIRECTOR

Mr. Schmedt has been a senior merger and acquisition and corporate finance dealmaker for over 16 years and has closed over 100 transactions valued at over $1.1 billion. Mr. Schmedt formerly worked for Quality Distribution Inc., the largest chemical transportation company in the U.S., as its Acquisitions Director, and was involved in the entire process of identifying, analyzing, negotiating and closing target acquisitions. Prior to Quality Distribution, Mr. Schmedt served as M&A Director for Brooke Franchise Corporation in Kansas City, a top-50 independent insurance agency; Managing Director for J.W. Parker and Company, a lower-middle market M&A services firm in Tampa, also serving as its interim CFO; Associate Director for Geneva Capital Markets, working on business valuations and M&A services; Senior Business Consultant for Tunstall Consulting, a Florida-based regional business consulting firm, gaining experience in capital raising and IPOs; and began his career with KPMG in Tampa, as Senior Auditor and Consultant. During his career Mr. Schmedt developed significant expertise in the PEO/Staffing/HR, real estate, distribution, transportation, insurance, technology and retail industries. Mr. Schmedt received a BBA in Finance and Accounting from the University of South Florida and is a Florida Licensed Real Estate Broker, Certified Valuation Analyst and Certified Public Accountant.

STEVEN D. HYDEN

STEVEN D. HYDEN

MANAGING DIRECTOR

Mr. Hyden is a highly respected business valuation expert and mergers and acquisitions advisor. Before joining Washington Partners, Mr. Hyden served as Vice President - Chief Operating Officer of The Financial Valuation Group, Tampa, Florida. During that period, he also was President of Hyden Capital, Inc., a firm that provided mergers and acquisitions and business brokerage services. Prior to joining The Financial Valuation Group, Mr. Hyden served as Vice President, Business Brokerage and Valuation Services for Merrill Lynch. Before that, he worked for the Kemper Group of insurance companies. He began his career with the CPA firm Ernst and Young. Mr. Hyden earned a BS in Marketing from Syracuse University and an MBA in Accounting from Pace University, New York, New York. Mr. Hyden is a Certified Public Accountant licensed in the State of Florida, has the Accredited in Business Valuation (ABV) designation conferred by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) and is a Florida licensed real estate broker. Mr. Hyden is author and/or co-author of numerous books and articles and is an experienced developer and instructor of business valuation courses for organizations such as the Florida Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the SEC Institute. Mr. Hyden has earned the CM&AA designation of the Alliance of Merger & Acquisition Advisors (AM&AA) and member of ACG (Association of Corporate Growth).

JUAN C. PARDO

JUAN C. PARDO

SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT

Prior to joining Washington Partners, Mr. Pardo was Channel Marketing Manager for Lenox Industrial Tools a division of Newell Rubbermaid (NASDAQ: NWL). Mr. Pardo managed $20 million in product mix for LENOX within Home Center accounts (Home Depot, Lowe’s, Sears, Amazon.com). Prior to LENOX, Mr. Pardo served as District Sales Manager for Newell Rubbermaid, responsible for $40 million with the Home Depot account in New England and Puerto Rico. Mr. Pardo began his career as a Sales Representative for The Home Depot Division of Newell Rubbermaid, calling on over 20 Home Depot locations throughout Ft. Lauderdale, Miami & Key West, FL. Mr. Pardo received a BS in Business Administration with an emphasis in Marketing and Management Information Systems from the University of South Florida. Mr. Pardo is a member of the Association for Corporate Growth (ACG),International Business Brokers Association (IBBA) and Alliance of Merger & Acquisition Advisors (AM&AA). Mr. Pardo is a Licensed Florida Real Estate Sales Associate.

OLIA CHACONAS

OLIA CHACONAS

VICE PRESIDENT OF BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT

Mrs. Chaconas joined Washington Partners in 2016 to enhance relationship-building with current and potential business owners and coordinate Washington Partners' Business Development activities. She actively encourages business owners and operators to establish relationships with the firm. Prior to joining Washington Partners, Ms. Chaconas worked as the Marketing Manager and Inventory Control specialist for Darphin Cosmetics, where she was responsible for a variety of customer relations functions. Ms. Chaconas also owned and operated Market House, a Russian retailer and was responsible for buying and importing makeup and women's clothing from Italy to Russia. Ms. Chaconas graduated from Moscow State University, where she earned a BS in Tourism and Hospitality.

Courtney A. Bernhard

Courtney A. Bernhard

Associate

Joining Washington Partners in December of 2019, Ms. Bernhard was the Director of Operations at HomeVestors, a national franchise specializing in the acquisition of distressed homes. Prior to her 5 year tenure with distressed home franchise, she specialized in Property and Casualty as well as Life and Health Insurance with State Farm helping protect families and their assets. Ms. Bernhard grew up in Las Vegas, Nevada where she worked through the height and downturn of the real estate market as an Escrow Officer in the Title industry. Ms. Bernhard holds her Florida Real Estate License as well as Florida General Lines, Life Variable Annuity and Health.

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