The value of industry specialization in business lifecycle advisory

Strategic advice

Learn how our approach delivers highly differentiated solutions to help you level up.

Truist Business Lifecycle Advisory is about understanding what your business currently needs, where you want it to go next—and how to help you get there. To help accomplish that, your Truist relationship manager will bring their industry-specific advice and ideas to the table. This can help you stay up to date on trends and research, maximize efficiencies, navigate or avoid challenges, and add value at every stage of the business lifecycle.

While every Truist relationship manager provides their clients with industry insights, sometimes they’ll also partner with an industry consultant who has a wealth of connections and knowledge in a specific industry. It’s especially beneficial for companies that have distinct drivers impacting their business road map and growth trajectory or have characteristics such as:

  • Complex regulatory requirements
  • Specialized banking needs
  • Unique risk profiles
  • Rapid digital transformation or product innovation plans

“When a company’s path forward is shaped by the unique dynamics of its industry, that’s when working with an industry consultant is most important,” says Mary-Crawford Taylor, head of industry consulting at Truist Commercial. “That’s why we make those highly specialized sectors the focus of our Industry Consulting group.”

Taylor and her team have extensive knowledge in multiple industries, including beverage, building products, education, food and agribusiness, not-for-profit hospitals and health systems, transportation and logistics, and waste and environmental services. For these industries, a Truist relationship manager partners with an industry consultant to deliver strategic advice to their clients.

Other areas of dedicated specialization at Truist include auto dealers, association services, foundations and endowments, and senior care.

How industry-specific advice can help you level up

Industry-specific advice can be advantageous when a company prepares to move forward in the business lifecycle.

“We help businesses evolve from stage to stage by asking questions to understand where they are and where they want to go, then providing industry-specific insights and connections to help them get there,” says Taylor.

“We help businesses evolve from stage to stage by asking questions to understand where they are and where they want to go, then providing industry-specific insights and connections to help them get there.”
Mary-Crawford Taylor, Head of Industry Consulting, Truist Commercial

Here are a few examples of the complexities some industries face in their business lifecycle and how Truist helps clients navigate them.

Beverage industry: Unique banking needs and creative collateral

The beverage industry is always changing—from consumer trends in spending and consumption to challenges with manufacturing processes and supply chains. For example, there’s growing interest in alcohol alternatives and health-promoting beverages, as well as ones made with natural sweeteners such as agave.Disclosure 1 Industry consultants understand how such trends can bring new opportunities for growth—and when unique banking solutions are needed to make growth happen.

Case in point: Truist created a customized solution for an early-stage distiller facing challenges with cash flow. Their industry consultant recognized that the distiller had a unique form of collateral that actually becomes more valuable as it ages: bourbon.

“Because we understand how time can add value to this type of product, we were able to put together a new type of financing for this particular client that others weren’t offering,” says Taylor. This provided the boost in capital needed to help the company grow.

“Our beverage industry consultant works with companies of every size in every stage, from very large, established beer distributors to midsize wineries to smaller, early-stage bourbon and spirit distillers,” says Taylor. Other areas of focus include co-packers, co-ops, distributors, and importers of beer, wine, spirits, soft drinks, energy drinks, and alternative beverages like kombucha, seltzer, juice, coffee, and tea.

Food and agribusiness sector: Complex risk profiles and capital needs

Food and agribusiness companies face consumer challenges similar to those in the beverage industry. For example, during economic downturns, customers often buy more frozen foods—and shift from mid-tier to bargain brands. Other trends that continue to shape and evolve the industry include a focus on healthy foods, sustainability, a customer-centric experience, and transparent pricing.Disclosure 2

“We use our industry knowledge to help businesses anticipate that evolution to get in front of the investment needs and capture the market,” says Taylor.

This sector also faces unique risks. Many of the products are perishable—which can mean they require cold storage or expedited distribution. The supply chain is also complex, often involving farmers, processing plants, cold storage facilities, distributors, and retailers. An industry consultant with a deep understanding of these unique challenges can provide financial solutions that address them.

“For example, because we understand the chain of custody on certain food products, we can provide inventory financing on product that’s stored at third-party locations,” says Taylor.

Building products industry: Dynamic and intertwined opportunities

The building products industry is a key player in the U.S. economy, with construction contributing 4% to the gross domestic product (GDP).Disclosure 3 Our consultant understands how it plays out across the world’s stage—and how it impacts businesses at the most granular level. Unique challenges include the contractor bidding process, fluctuating materials costs, inventory management, and shifts in where people live and work.

Our deep understanding of the industry’s dynamics also helps us develop proactive solutions for navigating economic uncertainty. For example, our team knows that lumber supply companies tend to be more susceptible to volatility in the market than rock-based product companies, like those dealing with aggregates or cement manufacturing. Demand for those heavy materials is more durable since they’re used in residential, non-residential, and public infrastructure projects.Disclosure 4

Our consultant also closely follows trends in residential construction because they tend to have a big impact on commercial construction.

“If you have a big push on construction of multifamily or single-family properties in an area or region, you know that those new residents will need commercial infrastructure—including education, healthcare, retail, and office buildings,” says Taylor. “So, an upswing in residential usually means an upswing in commercial is soon to follow.” That means opportunities abound for clients in aggregates, builder supply, plumbing, roofing, cabinets, drywall, windows, and more.

What makes Truist’s approach special

Business lifecycle advice and industry expertise are not the only things that set Truist apart. They also support our commitment to building long-term relationships.

“Our waste and recycling industry consultant is so passionate about her job that she once took me on a five-hour tour of a landfill and its operations,” says Taylor. “Our relationship managers and industry consultants truly love what they do—and who they do it for.”

That deep level of care, along with extensive industry expertise and a strong understanding of your business, means that Truist clients have a team of experts by their side every step of the way.

What business lifecycle advice can benefit you right now?

Contact your Truist relationship manager to find out how we can work together to find custom solutions to meet your evolving needs.