Our team is committed to building value in industrial businesses. We are committed to the success of both our investors and management teams, and we work tirelessly to create value.

Stephen J. Ellis

FOUNDER AND MANAGING DIRECTOR

steve.ellis@scgequity.com

Steve Ellis has been involved in the buyouts of both healthy and distressed companies and has grown and built value within these in his 30-year plus career. An entrepreneur himself, he founded Stratford-Cambridge Group to utilize his operational skills and experience to build value within its portfolio. Previously, Steve was President and majority owner of BEHCO, Inc., an industrial distribution and manufacturing company until its sale and he remains an advisor to the company. His primary leadership roles at SCG are (i) overall firm management, (ii) managing portfolio company investments and board leadership, and (iii) continuing to build and maintain investor relationships.

Steve is an active member of the Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME), The Alliance of Mergers and Acquisitions Advisors (AMAA) and has served on the Board of Directors of the Detroit Chapter of the Association for Corporate Growth (ACG) and is currently a member of the ACG Public Policy Committee, and has also held board and equity positions in various companies.

Steve has a Bachelor of Science degree from Lawrence Technological University and has completed the Private Equity & Venture Capital program at Harvard Business School.


Jay Freund

MANAGING DIRECTOR

jay.freund@scgequity.com

Prior to joining Stratford-Cambridge Group in 2018, Jay’s 25-year plus career began in investment banking and evolved to principal investing in private equity and other junior capital opportunities.  Within these positions, Jay has gained valuable experience partnering with lower middle-market management teams in the manufacturing, industrial/business services, and value-added distribution sectors.  Jay has been associated with firms including Canal Capital Partners, PNC Erieview Capital (fka National City Equity Partners), Banc One Capital Corporation, and The Ohio Company. His primary leadership roles at SCG are to assist in (i) originating, evaluating, closing, and managing portfolio company investments, and (ii) continuing to build and maintain investor relationships.

Jay is currently co-chair of the leadership council for the Alliance of Merger and Acquisition Advisors (AM&AA) Northeast Ohio chapter.  In addition, he is an active member of the Cleveland Chapter of the Association for Corporate Growth (ACG).

Jay contributes time to the boards of non-profit organizations in the Northeast Ohio region, particularly groups that look to improve the lives of individuals in the community.  He received a BSBA in economics from Ohio Northern University and his MBA from the Krannert Graduate School of Management at Purdue University.

Jay is located in the Cleveland/Northeast Ohio market.


Darrell J. Smith

VICE PRESIDENT

darrell.smith@scgequity.com

Darrell Smith joined Stratford-Cambridge Group in 2020 as Vice President, bringing over 10 years of experience across middle-market private investing, investment banking, and operational consulting industries. 

Prior to joining Stratford-Cambridge Group, Darrell spent the previous three years with Michigan Capital Advisors, Midwest-based private investment firm focused on controlling, minority and VC investments within the manufacturing and transportation industries. While at MCA, Darrell led the firm’s sourcing and investment activities, and also provided portfolio management support. Darrell’s career has provided him the opportunity to have been associated with other firms including BCBS of Michigan, United Road Services, Prairie Capital Advisors, KPMG, and Ingersoll Rand. Darrell’s primary roles at SCG are to assist in (i) originating, evaluating, closing, and managing portfolio company investments, and (ii) continuing to build and maintain investor relationships.

Darrell is an active member of the Detroit Chapter of the Association for Corporate Growth (ACG) and has participated as a speaker on different panels for the local chapter.   

Mr. Smith holds a bachelor’s degree in Supply Chain Management and specialization in International Business from Michigan State University.