ACG Kentucky Deal of the Year


Ceremony to feature insights from 21c CEO, regional M&A overview

LOUISVILLE (March 5, 2019) - The Kentucky chapter of the Association for Corporate Growth ("ACG Kentucky") has selected Louisville-based 21c Museum Hotels’ acquisition by Paris, France-based AccorHotels as its 2018 Deal of the Year.

With AccorHotels' acquisition of 85% of 21c Museum Hotels, the art and design themed hospitality chain joined publicly traded AccorHotels’ MGallery collection of international boutique hotels under its global hospitality platform. AccorHotels (OTC: ACCYY) is a leading travel and lifestyle group with a portfolio of more than 4,500 hotels, resorts and residences across 100 different countries.

21c President and CEO Craig Greenberg, a key figure in the $51 million transaction, will speak about his experiences and

Craig Greenberg, CEO, 21c Museum Hotels

details of the deal at the ACG Kentucky Deal of the Year Event, to be held March 14 at the KFC Yum! Center.

The annual ACG Kentucky Deal of the Year awards recognize a company, private equity firm, or similar investment group for its accomplishments regarding a merger, acquisition or capital markets transaction in Kentucky or Southern Indiana.  The annual award underscores ACG's focus on corporate growth through fostering regional support ecosystems consisting of M&A, finance, accounting, risk management and legal professionals.     

In addition to the award ceremony, John Sweeney, Managing Director of Hilliard Lyons Investment Banking, will recap the M&A activity that took place in the Kentuckiana region last year.

“A transaction panel selected 21c from more than 40 regional deals announced during 2018,” said Bill Strench, chairman of the Deal of the Year Awards and Frost Brown Todd attorney. 

Greenberg, a founding partner of 21c, oversees the strategic direction of the company and its daily operations. Appointed CEO in September 2017, Greenberg is highly regarded for his expertise in complex and creative financing.

During Greenberg's tenure, the company expanded from its Louisville flagship to seven additional markets, hired more than 1,000 teammates, oversaw total real estate development in excess of $380 million, and organized more than 100 exhibitions in over 75,000 square feet of hotel exhibition space.  Founded in 2006, 21c Museum Hotels currently operates in Louisville and Lexington; Cincinnati; Bentonville, Arkansas; Durham, North Carolina; Oklahoma City; Nashville, Tennessee and Kansas City, Missouri.  21c ‘s ninth property in Chicago is scheduled to open in Q4 of 2019, while additional properties are under development in, St. Louis, Missouri and Des Moines, Iowa.

Prior to 21c, Greenberg was an attorney with Frost Brown Todd. Among other responsibilities there, Greenberg managed an ancillary business dedicated to securing and deploying New Markets Tax Credits; this business helped clients raise and invest money in low-income communities across the country. He graduated from Harvard Law School and the University of Michigan, and serves on the Board of Directors for Republic Bancorp and ISCO Industries.

Strench practices in corporate law with an emphasis on venture capital, private equity financing, public offerings and mergers and acquisitions. He represents numerous businesses, from start-ups to public companies, as well as a number of venture capital funds. Bill is a member of the Board of Directors of Commonwealth Seed Capital, LLC.

Sweeney has 20-plus years in M&A and Corporate Finance, specializing in middle-market sized, closely held private companies. His typical client comes from that large pool of Baby Boom entrepreneurs who seek liquidity, transition or exit from their largest and most personal investment -- their closely held business.

Attendance (including lunch) for ACG Kentucky members is included in annual membership. Non-members may attend at a cost of $60; the cost for ACG members from other chapters is $45.  Corporate admission for 6 attendees is available for $199 - email the organizer for payment and registration details. ACG Annual and Table sponsors should email the names of their attendees in advance. 

Register online at:  The deadline to register is noon. March 13.

(Penguin photo courtesy of 21c Museum Hotel)

About ACG Kentucky:

As part of the global Association for Corporate Growth network, ACG Kentucky focuses on corporate growth by fostering regional support ecosystems comprised of M&A, finance, accounting, risk management and legal professionals.   The group provides insight on capital formation trends and important local and national issues, and connects members through a monthly speaker series, the Mid-South ACG Capital Connection and special events. More information is available at


Terry McWilliams | Administrator | | 502.410.2113

Brad Smith | President | ACG Kentucky | | 502.992.2750

Previous ACG Kentucky Deal of the Year honorees

2018 - Blue Equity's acquisition of Liquor Barn, the largest locally owned and operated retail chain of spirits, beer, wine and party goods in Kentucky, was honored as the 2017 Deal of the Year.

2017 - Weller Equity Partners' investment in KFI Furniture was 2016's top deal. CI Agent Solutions and Almost Family were also recognized.

2016 - The top 2015 deal was the acquisition of Angel's Envy (Angel’s Share Brands/Louisville Distilling Co.) by Bacardi Limited (Hamilton, Bermuda).  Kindred Healthcare and Trilogy Health Services transactions were also recognized.