Case Study

Developed Internal Finance Talent, Reporting, & Forecasting, Facilitating a Successful Exit

SaaS / Transportation

Smart Rhino Labs

Industry:  SaaS, Tech, & Transportation

Size:  251-500 Employees


Successful strategic exit with a well-aligned strategic partner, allowing the company founders to continue operating the business autonomously as a division of Randall-Reilly.

Preferred CFO Services

  • Executive Coaching
  • Financial Forecasting
  • Strategic Advisory
  • Networking
  • Capital Raising Management & Strategy
  • Accounting & Monthly Financial Reporting

While serving as CFO for Smart Rhino Labs, a recruitment marketing company in Salt Lake City, Utah, and one of Utah’s fastest growing companies, Preferred CFO converted accounting from a cash basis to an accrual basis, developed internal financial talent, established a robust financial forecast, populated a comprehensive data room, and assisted senior executives in strategic analysis and deal evaluation.

The result was more reliable financial reporting, improved financial visibility, and a successful exit with a well-aligned strategic partner.

Executive Coaching | Improving Financial Visibility | Raising Capital | Talent Development | Navigate Successful Strategic Exit

Situation: Improve Financial Positioning, Reporting, & Visibility

Smart Rhino Randall-Reilly Successful Exit CFO

From left to right: David Guyaux, Preferred CFO; Ben Paynter, COO Smart Rhino Labs; Brett Evanson, CTO Smart Rhino Labs; Scott Evanson, CEO Smart Rhino Labs; Troy Skabelund, Preferred CFO. Not pictured: Jared Beauchamp, CMO Smart Rhino Labs.

Smart Rhino Labs is a growing recruitment marketing company specializing in driver recruitment for the trucking industry. Founded in 2011 in Salt Lake City, Utah, by marketers and technologists, the company has refined a data-driven approach to high-volume recruitment that includes using scalable technology and robust performance data to identify quality candidates and optimize the hiring process for employers. Visit:

As one of Utah’s fastest growing companies, Smart Rhino Labs sought CFO advisory services to improve the accuracy and credibility of its financial reporting, enhance financial visibility, and determine the company’s cash requirements, cash position, and trajectory. 

Smart Rhino Labs was founded by four founders who felt they had an unclear long-term financial plan for the business. They sought Preferred CFO’s expertise to provide strategic and financial insights regarding the company’s future and associated cash requirements.  They were trying to determine whether they should continue to operate the business, sell the business outright, raise debt, or take on a minority equity investor.

When Preferred CFO began serving as the CFO for Smart Rhino Labs, the company’s accounting was on a cash basis, leaving them unprepared for potential discussions with lenders or investors about the true profitability and momentum of the business. Smart Rhino Labs also lacked a financial forecast, including the ability to measure and predict cash flow, growth, and profitability by business segment.

Approach: Roadmap to a Successful Exit

1. Led a full SWOT analysis and facilitated dialogue among the owners to achieve alignment on long-term goals.

2. Converted accounting to accrual basis to prepare for conversations with lenders, investors, and auditors.

3. Trained and coached in-house talent on accrual accounting.

4. Designed a financial forecast to project revenue, costs, and cash flow.

5. Provided a monthly financial package showing how results compared to forecast and budget and explaining the related variances.

6. Recommended that the company apply for the prestigious Inc. 5000 and Utah 100 national and regional awards for the fastest growing companies.

7. Established new financial reporting to track growth and profitability by business segment.

8. Provided key introductions to deal-related contacts (law firm, valuation firm, and investment bank).

9. Assisted in the valuation of the company, the evaluation of multiple offers, and negotiation of important deal terms. 

Results: Successful Exit

  • Helped owners address key structural issues that had made the company less attractive to investors.
  • Trained & developed the in-house bookkeeper to elevate financial record keeping, reporting, and sustainable systems.
  • Raised awareness of the company when it was recognized as one of Utah’s fastest growing companies in the state of Utah (listed in Mountain West Capital Network’s prestigious “Utah 100”).
  • Successful exit with a well-aligned strategic partner, allowing the company founders to continue operating the business autonomously as a division of Randall-Reilly. 

About Smart Rhino’s Successful Exit

While Smart Rhino didn’t initially hire Preferred CFO to help with a strategic exit, the results of the work performed allowed the Founders to seriously consider the sale of the company to potential strategic buyers. When approached with offers, Preferred CFO helped Smart Rhino navigate deals and contracts, assisted in due diligence and report preparation, and provided key deal-related introductions such as a valuation firm, investment bank, and law firm to assist with the transaction. 

The final acquisition was extremely successful, allowing the company founders to continue operating the business autonomously as a division of Randall-Reilly.