Business leader and entrepreneur Eric T. Landis has had a long and decorated career. He is known for his expertise in the financial services field, having served in numerous capacities over the course of the past 30 years. Eric is best known as the founder and principal Partner of Rivel Consulting LLC, a private equity firm with its headquarters in Charlottesville, Virginia.
At Rivel, Eric has worked with large corporate interests and small business start-ups alike, providing innovative funding strategies to help businesses thrive. When he is not working on market capitalization initiatives or exploring new business ventures, he can be found enjoying the outdoors with his family and competing in triathlons throughout the Middle Atlantic region.
What Led You to Pursue a Career in Financial Services?
Just before I enrolled in college at Duke University, I had the opportunity to network with several business leaders. What they did fascinated me, and I gained the desire to explore education in this field. I earned a bachelor’s degree in Economics at Duke in 1988, and completed my MBA in Finance and International Business at the New York University Leonard N. Stern School of Business in 1993.
During both my undergraduate and graduate programs, I was able to gain valuable experience in the financial services field. I worked in several roles, both as an intern and as a part-time “summer hire”. My first position was as a marketing representative for a major Australia-based technology leasing firm, where I worked with several multinational corporations and was exposed to complex leasing agreements. Next, I worked for Alpha International Management Group in New York City, where I was tasked with assessing and coordinating marketing agreements between companies. I discovered a talent for strategic planning, which ultimately set the stage for many of my future business ventures. I continue to be fascinated with the financial world – the more complex a business arrangement, the more I enjoy what I do. I couldn’t be happier with my career path.
Just after earning my MBA, I worked for Nationsbank, N.A. in both management and in credit analysis. This work gave me a very broad look at the details behind business transactions and allowed me to further develop my own management and evaluation skills. All in all, my work in the financial field has been incredibly rewarding.
What Inspired You to Start Your Own Private Equity Firm?
Working for other companies was great in that it gave me the opportunity to hone my skills and to be exposed to many different aspects of the business world. When I felt like I had amassed enough knowledge and experience, I was ready to forge my own path. Private equity is in itself a fascinating market category; in a nutshell, it is the concept of helping businesses establish themselves, sometimes in highly-competitive niches. Private equity financing requires detailed analyses of market conditions and regional preferences, and these detailed assessments really resonate with my personal and professional interests.
What is Your Greatest Achievement in Your Field?
Two achievement stand out in my career. My first came just after I received my MBA and went to work for Nationsbank. As a management associate for the firm, I was responsible for putting together a syndication package for a nationally-known commercial real estate developer. The package was worth $160 million, and I was recognized for my achievements by Nationsbank and by my peers throughout the financial field. It was the result of that success that propelled me to a senior role in the company, where I continued to thrive.
My second achievement, of course, was my decision to establish Rivel Consulting. Owning my own business had long been my dream, and with my experiences and understanding of market capitalization, I have been able to help other business owners achieve their dreams. We focus on small and mid-sized business ventures, and have developed many innovative funding solutions for these companies as they get started in their respective fields.
How Do You Keep Up With Emerging Business Opportunities?
I am a voracious reader, studying market newsletters and media sources to glean details about emerging markets around the world. This habit speaks to my interest in business analysis practices; by exploring emerging markets and gaining an understanding of market dynamics, a business leader can leverage business opportunities with less financial risk. I believe that due diligence is the key to success in any business venture – you have to do your homework before moving forward.
How Can We Get in Contact With You?
I'd love to connect on LinkedIn with anyone who is interested. I've recently launched a Facebook page as well to follow the content that I find interesting.