Learn more about the sectors we serve

  • State & Local Governments
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    State & Local Governments

    Simply put, we help our clients get the funding they need to make sustainable improvements to their communities. PFM partners with clients to provide sure footing during the complex financing process, using clear foresight, shrewd analysis and resourcefulness to navigate every unexpected turn. We understand what our clients face because we have shared their experiences. Many of our professionals have previous experience serving as government officials -- Finance and Budget Directors, Treasurers, and Chief Financial Officers -- for government entities of all sizes. This enables us to provide a unique perspective, combining the front line knowledge of our client’s needs with cutting-edge, creative approaches available across the national PFM footprint.

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  • Higher Education
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    Higher Education

    Higher education CFOs deal with numerous complex issues, juggling institutional balance sheets, cash flow, risk management, strategic planning, long-term funding, bank relationships -- all of which require diligent attention. The higher education group at PFM has advised on hundreds of higher education transactions totaling billions of dollars. Our specialists constantly monitor changes in the financial landscape that might affect higher education. We are committed to providing our clients with sustainable, yet ingenious, solutions in three major areas: Governance, Cash Flow and Financial Planning and Capital Markets.

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  • Healthcare
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    Healthcare

    Amidst the challenges of a rapidly evolving healthcare environment, PFM’s healthcare practice combines experienced financial advice, disciplined management and ingenuity to assist clients with capital raising, strategic planning, financial risk advisory services, balance sheet optimization, as well as capital markets strategy, mergers and acquisitions advisory services and corporate strategy. Between 2001 and 2016 Q1, we advised healthcare clients on more than $70 billion in healthcare financing programs, spanning virtually every type of financing plan, security, legal structure and credit quality. Through our asset management services, we provide healthcare clients with the benefit of recognized investment advisory expertise, managing operating and reserve accounts as well as endowments foundations and retirement plans.

    For over 30 years, our healthcare practice has generated powerful results for clients in multi-state/facility systems, academic medical centers, community hospitals and senior care providers.

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  • Transportation
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    Transportation

    PFM’s transportation finance practice has ranked number one in the transportation finance field since 2012, according to Thomson Reuters, advising on nearly twice as many long-term municipal transportation transactions as the nearest competitor.

    Airports: PFM has worked to develop the nation’s leading airport financing advisory practice, and the professionals of our airport practice together have occupied the number one position in airport financial advisory for the past twenty years. We assist airport clients of all sizes with traditional and innovative financing structures, ranging from the use of variable-rate structures and interest-rate swaps to better manage private activity bond issuance to helping clients develop investor outreach programs.

    State DOTs and Highway Agencies: PFM has served numerous state-level transportation agencies in projects that range from highway revenue bond securities to development of State Infrastructure Banks to Design-Build-Operate-Maintain program evaluations. We have been at the forefront of public-private partnerships (P3s) since their introduction to the U.S. markets and we developed the first state infrastructure revolving funds for transportation projects.

    Mass Transit: Our in-depth knowledge of transit financial operations including complex federal, state and local funding arrangements and capital and operating cost structures means we are prepared to “hit the ground running” to address our clients’ needs. We help clients secure traditional grant funding as well as bond financing, and we're adept at merging alternative funding techniques, labor negotiations support and arbitrage rebate services.

    Seaports: Seaports are by necessity public-private partnerships, bringing together shipping lines, manufacturers, retail firms, trucking lines and railroads with port, highway and rail infrastructure providers. At PFM, we understand the full range of potential capital needs and financial solutions and we bring independent, robust and insightful guidance to every project.

    Toll Facilities and Highways: PFM’s experience ranges from difficult stand-alone start-up toll roads to mature turnpike system credits, statewide and regional authorities, and major bridge and tunnel project financings. We also have extensive expertise with the TIFIA program and various senior/subordinate lien structures. Whether the project at hand is new or greenfield toll road development, we recognize that these are difficult credits and they are an area where our team brings much to the client/advisor partnership.

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  • K-12 Schools
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    K-12 Schools

    Primary and secondary schools face a number of competing pressures today. They are expected to keep pace with the needs of expanding communities, serve the needs of existing schools and build for the future. At the same time, they are tasked to restrain spending while making the most of scarce economic resources without increasing community tax burdens. PFM has a long history of helping schools maintain this delicate balance.

    We have worked with hundreds of school districts, charter and private schools throughout the United States, advising on billions of dollars in long-term financing. For the past five years, we have averaged approximately 200 school district bond transactions nationally – the most of any firm in the country.

    PFM’s primary and secondary school clients include many of the largest urban districts and some of the smallest rural districts. The experience gained and technical resources developed for the larger districts enable PFM to provide efficient and cost-effective financing tools to our smaller clients.

    In addition to meeting the financing needs of school districts, PFM has developed strategic forecasting solutions for school districts of all sizes to use for long-term budget planning and forecasting. Our proprietary software gives our clients access to information that allows them to make informed decisions today that will impact their school district for the next five-to-ten years.

    PFM’s school district specialists have also been able to meet specific needs in unique situations that our numerous clients face, such as the impact of changing tax structures, property tax valuations, and accounting regulations.

    We are experienced in working with QZABs, QSCBs, QECBs and other Federally-subsidized financing tools.

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  • Public Power
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    Public Power

    Power providers face many challenges in today's environment. How can municipal power providers build the required infrastructure, remain flexible enough to respond to future opportunities, but still maintain their competitive rates and healthy financial position? PFM's public power practice helps many issuers answer this complex question by assisting providers in developing financial strategies to leverage their access to low-cost, tax-exempt financing.

    Partnering with clients’ internal finance staff, PFM's public power professionals help effectively manage the entire balance sheet, not just debt, in order to help keep billing rates as low as possible in the current market. Our experience working with more than half of the 50 largest public power providers in the U.S. allows PFM to bring knowledge of the overall industry to bear on our clients’ behalf. PFM’s public power practice is an experienced and knowledgeable team with backgrounds in both municipal and agency finance and on Wall Street.

    While PFM‘s financial advisors generally focus on the debt side of the balance sheet and strategic planning, PFM’s asset management professionals are focused on managing the assets of our public power clients. They provide asset management and consulting relating to cash and short-term assets, reserve and/or bond proceeds funds, along with retirement, nuclear decommission trust, or other multi-asset class portfolios.

    Our extensive knowledge of both sides of the balance sheet allows us to identify asset management opportunities that can benefit our public power clients. These opportunities may manifest themselves in improving investment policy structure and guidelines, improving asset/liability or cash flow matching for construction projects, adjusting asset allocations to better mitigate various risks, or using structured products and other non-traditional assets to build custom portfolios to meet specific client needs.

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  • Environmental Utilities
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    Environmental Utilities

    In a time of shifting regulations and increased public scrutiny, our environmental utilities group provides disciplined and innovative solutions for local, regional and national governments, tasked with reducing natural resource consumption, improving air and water quality and providing sustainable services—all within budget.

    Our pioneering thinking in environmental finance has helped clients by lowering their renewable energy capital costs, adding value and efficiency through opportunity savings analyses, ownership options, funding evaluations and options and funding optimization.

    For more than 30 years we’ve also been a trusted advisor to a wide range of utility clients on billions of dollars in transactions. No matter the area of utility planning, our financial expertise and insight can help contribute to your success in solid waste, storm water/wastewater and general water.

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  • State Revolving Funds
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    State Revolving Funds

    State Revolving Funds (SRF) are a perpetual source of financing for state projects. The term “Revolving Fund” means that interest earned and money repaid is put back into the program to fund additional projects.

    PFM’s financial advisory team has served as advisor on dozens of SRFs with total par amounts exceeding several billion dollars. Our success in creating and implementing SRF and pooled loan programs for our clients throughout the nation is a result of our extensive knowledge in this specialized practice area, including:

    • Optimization of available program security including equity funds, loan collateralization, moral obligation pledge and state intercept mechanisms, etc.
    • Thorough understanding of EPA regulations
    • State match funding sources
    • Leveraging structures: Reserve fund, cash flow and hybrid models
    • Federal and state legal issues (i.e. IRS regulations, solutions to address TIPRA, etc.)

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  • Sports, Leisure & Cultural Facilities
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    Sports, Leisure & Cultural Facilities

    High profile facility construction projects that can unite a community also carry serious risks: poorly structured financings can undermine any budget, and success typically depends on the delicate coordinated support of public and private entities.

    Tailored to the specific needs of each of our clients in this sector, PFM has created innovative financing structures that make public-private partnerships successful for all stakeholders. PFM's working knowledge of local markets, local regulations and local political networks brings added value to every public purpose and assembly project. That's because obtaining the maximum amount of economic leverage for a high-profile project is not only about financing; it’s about the skillful coordination of relationships among numerous public and private interests. We have been a reliable partner in many projects of this type, and bring both our financial and our procedural expertise to the table on our clients’ behalf.

    Our experience in this specialized area includes:

    • Arena, stadium and convention center financings
    • Financing of urban redevelopment projects and mixed-use developments
    • Project revenue-secured debt financings for sports facilities
    • Cultural facilities and concert venue credits
    • Hotel projects

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  • Housing Authorities
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    Housing Authorities

    A surge in public housing projects and new financing models are driving growth in the housing sector, and PFM’s housing professionals have played major roles in public housing finance for decade. We have been involved in over several billion dollars in housing transactions and assisted more than 130 Housing Authorities, of all sizes. We focus on strategic planning, financial risk management and balance sheet optimization.

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  • Endowments & Foundations
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    Endowments & Foundations

    An endowment or a foundation’s most critical role is the work supporting their central mission. Closely managing investment portfolios requires time and resources that can divert attention unnecessarily, even when board members possess high levels of investment expertise. Our asset management practice has a proven, long-term track record of helping all types of endowments and foundations address this gap. With an institutional client focus, we serve as an extension of the Board of Directors, acting as the investment fiduciary so our clients can focus on the work that is most important to them.

    For more than 20 years, our professionals have partnered with endowments and foundations to develop comprehensive investment programs that are cost-effective and tailored to their unique missions.

    We can help answer fundamental questions, such as:

    • Does our portfolio’s current asset allocation match our investment objectives and liquidity needs?
    • What challenges or causes of financial strain do we face?
    • Does our governance structure allow for timely decision-making amid the rapidly changing market environment?
    • How does our investment program compare to our peers?
    • Do our current and potential donors have confidence in the strategic partners that we’ve selected?

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  • Charitable Institutions
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    Charitable Institutions

    PFM professionals have over 32 years of experience in providing investment management, financial advisory services and financial modeling/analytical services to charitable institutions. Our strong background in this specialized area gives us an in-depth understanding of the specific challenges facing charitable institutions and informs our approach to providing financial consulting services.

    Additionally, our asset management practice manages funds for many not-for-profit entities, several of which are higher education endowment/foundation funds. We provide discretionary fixed-income management services, outsourced Chief Investment Officer services and investment consulting services to these clients. These clients represent approximately 10% of our current client base.

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  • Community Banks
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    Community Banks

    Managing a bank investment portfolio is increasingly complex as portfolios grow and new regulatory burdens are introduced. Recent investment challenges have included maintaining return objectives in a low rate environment, market uncertainty and additional government regulations. In addition to these challenges, banks typically purchase products from brokers, who earn commission through the sale of securities, and therefore may or may not direct clients to investment opportunities in the best interest of the bank.

    As a result, many financial institutions have turned to fiduciary partners who have a regulatory obligation to act in their client’s best interest. PFM’s asset management practice is part of a registered investment advisor and a fiduciary. Outsourcing investment management to our asset management professionals allows banks to comprehensively address multiple investment objectives and challenges while balancing earnings and risk management.

    While banks may choose to delegate portfolio management duties to third parties, they are still responsible for providing fiduciary oversight for the investment portfolio. For example, banks must ensure that third parties are independent, reliable and qualified. Additionally, banks must understand their investment strategy and be aware of the associated risks. We help clients with their oversight duties by providing the support and documentation needed to meet regulatory requirements.

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  • Taft-Hartley
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    Taft-Hartley

    We support our Taft-Hartley clients as a strategic partner by providing discretionary, customized investment solutions designed to meet each plan’s unique needs and investment objectives. It is our asset management practice’s goal to protect the fiscal health of our clients’ plans, so that retirement, annuity and health/welfare assets are available for all beneficiaries when needed. Our goal is to help the Trustees construct a best-in-class investment program to help meet the Funds’ long-term objectives.

    Our professionals are accountable to one interest only—that of our clients. We act as a fiduciary and an extension of their staff, delivering a disciplined investment process that provides a transparent look into the costs and management of their plan health, welfare and pension plans.

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  • Insurance & Self-Insurance
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    Insurance & Self-Insurance

    Insurance and self-insurance pools have unique challenges, including:

    • Uncertainty of claims amounts and timing
    • Premium cycles that require careful cash management
    • Cyclical swings in reinsurance availability and costs
    • Strong price competition
    • Coordination among internal management and outside actuaries, auditors, state regulators, and rating agencies
    • Need for capital preservation during periods of market volatility
    • Desire to simplify the investment process and minimize administrative overhead

    With these objectives and challenges in mind, our asset management group helps insurance and self-insurance clients professionally manage diversified portfolios that are tailored to their individual needs. We do not believe that “one size fits all.” Instead, our strategies are customized to each client’s lines of business, balance sheet and business goals.

    As of December 31, 2016, our asset management group managed more than $4.3 billion for insurance and self-insurance clients across the nation using our fixed-income and multi-asset class management strategies.

    Investment strategies are customized according to the distinct return objectives and risk tolerance of the self-insurance pool, and can include a combination of the asset management group’s managed portfolio solutions—from cash management and tailored fixed-income portfolios to multi-asset class management approaches (which can include fixed-income, equity, global, and alternative investments).

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  • Corporations
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    Corporations

    We focus on liquidity management and strategic forecasting for our corporate clients. Within liquidity management, our primary goals are to maintain stability of principal, sustain liquidity and produce a competitive return relative to a chosen benchmark.

    This is a new era of accountability in publicly traded companies. Regulatory risk and compliance requirements are high. Importantly then, decisions about future operating and capital initiatives need to be made with a full understanding of their ramifications on prospective financial statements.

    Corporations rely on our strategic financial planning group’s patented and proprietary financial modeling platform, Whitebirch, for analysis and reporting they can trust – so they can more easily and confidently make important decisions.

    Whitebirch gives corporations total control over their financial models, and reduces the risky guesswork inherent in most modeling. Patented layering technology permits unlimited scenarios and permutations of assumptions, while superior auditing functionality means models are more transparent.

    Corporate Use Case Examples

    • Cash Statement Modeling
    • Capital Asset Structures
    • Cash Sweeps
    • Consolidations
    • Project Finance / Cash Waterfalls
    • Capital Projects
    • Mergers, Acquisitions, and Divestitures
    • Cash Flows
    • Loan Portfolios
    • Deferred Revenue
    • Expense Allocations
    • PIK Interest Modeling
    • VAT Modeling
    • Cost & Profitability
    • Employee Benefits
    • Currency Conversions

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PFM_Philly_Office_02858_cropped

WHY WORK WITH US

Where will you find certainty in uncertain times?

At PFM, we believe that, in a changing world, doing meaningful work is more important than ever.

Our asset managers, financial advisors and consultants partner with clients large and small to transform their world. Beyond superior financial advice and disciplined management, we offer tailored creative consultation that empowers, mobilizes and educates—which, in turn, ensures sustainable outcomes.

Simply put, we provide visionaries the lens to a brighter future.

Which explains why hundreds of state and local governments, health systems, universities, school districts, banks and non-profit agencies trust PFM as their companion when navigating change and achieving tomorrow’s goals.

Let us help your dreams take flight.

Ingenuity. Sustainability. Resourcefulness. That’s PFM.

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