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Providing ambitious future CEOs with the capital, technology, and operational support they need to fulfill their dreams of growing a great business.
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Take Your Journey With Us

Raising Capital

We actively support entrepreneurs in funding their future success

Identifying, Assessing & Acquiring

Prospecting to LOI, Deal Diligence to Closing and quality Board Composition; our team of accomplished individuals are here for entrepreneurs to lean on


“Run by Entrepreneurs for Entrepreneurs”, Next Coast is uniquely endowed with multiple highly accomplished operators who bring you real world wisdom at the moments you need it most


Having transacted on both sides of the fence multiple times, our team provides real-time guidance and structure support to maximize returns

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We are In Your Corner

Helping Aspiring Entrepreneurs Find Success

Next Coast Legacy is run by a group of tenured operators who seek to invest exclusively in the best and the brightest future CEOs, helping them identify, acquire, grow and sell businesses in the lower to middle market.

Our Approach
25+ Years Combined Asset Class Experience

Real Operators. Real Results.

Mike Smerklo and Dustin Sellers, two Next Coast partners, each acquired companies via the search fund model. While serving as CEO, Mike and Dustin grew revenue by 60x and 15x, respectively, with Mike ultimately leading the IPO of his company ServiceSource, which peaked in value at $1.7 billion.

  • The Next Coast Investment Committee has 75+ years of investment experience combined with decades of hands-on operational know-how
  • Tenured, deep-rooted relationships within the lower / middle market community and related supporting resources make us a go-to across the space
  • Significant domain expertise in both financial due diligence and emerging technology make us a crossroads for lower/middle market and technology

You’re in good company

“The Next Coast ETA team were amazing partners. During our search as we were evaluating opportunities, they were approachable on thoughts that may not have been fully formed while also asking hard questions to make sure whatever we were looking at was the right business for us. As operators, they have always made themselves available to us quickly to help with resources, perspectives, or their networks.”

Dillon Friedman and Tommy Shelton
co-CEOs of APA Medical

“The Next Coast ETA team was fantastic to work with through the search, the deal, and now in the operating phase. They are thoughtful, responsive, and always willing to dig in deep.  Anthony and Tatiana really rolled up their sleeves during our deal and I'm so grateful for the partnership we have built over the years.”

Audrey Kohout
co-CEO of Luggage Forward

“Partnering with Next Coast was one of the smartest decisions we made during our search fund process. The creative thinking and growth mindset that Anthony and Dustin exhibit have been essential to our ability to lead and grow at TransTech.”

Bob Boniface and Tyrel Sulzer
co-CEOs at Transtech

The Next Coast X Factor

We know what it takes

We have lived the trials and tribulations as an investor-backed CEO. At our core, the partners of Next Coast Legacy are operators who have searched, identified, acquired, scaled and exited businesses and want to share their secrets to success.

Our well-proven model help aspiring entrepreneurs find great businesses

Tech is in our DNA

Tech is ubiquitous and critical in a CEO’s playbook. Operators can no longer de-prioritize technology in the lower / middle market. Strongly aligned with our sister VC fund, Next Coast Ventures, we have developed a holistic perspective on how technology can transform even the most tech-phobic businesses.

We help our searchers optimize technology at all points of their search and operations.

We are a community of founders, advisors, investors, and operators

With 25+ years of successful operating and investing in and around the lower / middle market ecosystem, our team is embedded in the current trends and opportunities affecting this corner of the market. We are thought-leaders on emerging themes for acquisition and are couriers of current information to our future CEOs.

We are a community of founders, advisors, investors, and operators.

We recognize the value of diverse backgrounds, mindsets, and ideas

Our in-depth criteria used in vetting operators continues to produce a rich, vibrant and representative tapestry of CEOs. We celebrate the diversity of the entrepreneur and will continue to strive for a unique mix of searchers representing our fund investments.

We recognize the value of diverse backgrounds, mindsets, and ideas.