Client Story

Victus Ars logo

The Scientist and
The Sage

“Let yourself sleep at night. Get rid of some of the stress. Survive a pandemic. Honestly, if I would have known earlier I would have made decisions, if not differently, faster. And I would’ve been more content with those decisions.

Michelle Frame
President & Founder

Michelle Frame is the CEO and Founder of Victus Ars, a company that “helps companies make better snacks.” Describing herself, however, Frame says she and her team are basically candy scientists.

It sounds like a sweet gig, but it’s serious work. Victus Ars is asset heavy, with sophisticated lab and R&D equipment. Their value proposition is to be for their clients a deeply engrained partner, making it possible for even a small family company to essentially outsource to Victus Ars for custom creations while still serving enterprise confectionary and food companies. And, Michelle is a visionary. “200,000 kids die each year from tuberculosis,” she reflects. “We can take their medication and put it into a gummy. Because taking pills is really scary.”

Why Victus Ars Engaged a Part-Time CFO

Like many founders, Frame had some preconceptions at start up. “I was adamant that you could just grow linearly…it’s not my intention to grow fast and furiously. The reality is, things don’t align that way.” With growth, Victus Ars needed a larger lab. With more assets came more complexity and responsibility. Needing strategic insights on the right thing to do first and next became essential. Understanding how to grow intentionally and strategically. How to get more out of financial insights than a few reports out of QuickBooks. How to manage cash flow more effectively. “I was stuck,” she says. “I need the benefit of somebody who thinks strategically, financially, about how to move the company forward and ask the right questions.”

Deciding on a part-time CFO rather than full time hire was calculated. Frame wanted to understand their needs better, the value a part-time CFO could deliver, and to keep full time positions reserved for more scientists for now. “It’s great because I get the hours I need and the insights I need, and I’m not trying to maintain yet another role.”

The FGC Financial Flywheel from ProCFO Partners

The Value of ProCFO Partners to Victus Ars

Haleh Fardi from Chicago is ProCFO Partners Co-Founder and Managing Partner
Haleh Fardi

“From the first time Haleh and I met, within the first hour, she’s showing us stuff that I found fantastic,” Frame recalls about starting an engagement with Haleh Fardi, Co-founder and Managing Partner with ProCFO Partners. For Victus Ars, the FGC Financial Flywheel has been especially valuable. “So many times you talk to CFOs and you see all these reports stacked on top of each other. Here’s your balance sheet, here’s your cash flow statement, here’s your profit and loss. You look at them as separate entities. But there’s an interconnectedness to all this. How you run a business requires all these things.” ProCFO Partners helped Victus Ars realize financial functions aren’t static pieces of information, but that different elements interact and move together, responding to each other. The FGC Flywheel helped Frame visualize shifts and possibilities. Haleh Fardi’s capabilities here were revelations for Victus Ars. “She does this extremely well,” Frame says. “Better than any CFO that I’ve ever worked with.”

“Get a Part-Time CFO Now!”

On how she’d advise other business leaders, founders, owners and executives who might be struggling – maybe without even knowing it – Frame is clear: “Get a part-time CFO now!”

“Let yourself sleep at night. Get rid of some of the stress. Survive a pandemic. Honestly, if I would have known earlier I would have made decisions, if not differently, faster. And I would’ve been more content with those decisions.”

It wasn’t just the advice and insights Fardi has shared that Frame has found valuable, but validation and confidence too. As a leader, these are some of x-factors that ProCFO Partners can provide that help Michelle keep her focus, “beyond the stars, somewhere out in the stratosphere,” where a visionary like her is most comfortable leading from.

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