Around Town with Jeff

ABG Capital CEOWHO: Jeff Tapolci, Ron Eggert and Kieran O’Dea

WHAT: Networking at the Pirates Game


WHEN: Wednesday May 29, 2013

Jeff and Ron were invited by Kieran O’Dea, from Alpern Rosenthal, to spend time outside of the ABG Capital office doing some networking at a Pittsburgh Pirates game. Kieran is currently a shareholder in the Audit and Assurance Department and he specializes on privately-held manufacturing, distribution and service companies.

Kieran didn’t intend for this to be any sort of formal networking event; he wanted to invite a few colleagues and enjoy the ball game. Among the invitees were lawyers, bankers, PE guys and a few other people from his firm who all enjoyed getting to know each other in the casual setting. They even ended the night with a great win for the Pirates!

Pirates Game

WHO: Jeff Tapolci, Jason Tapolci, Collin Ballantine and Kathy Scheidlmeier

WHAT: New Hire Luncheon

WHERE: The Rivers Club

WHEN: Wednesday May 29, 2013

Everyone can relate to the feeling of being a new employee, but Jeff and Jason decided long ago that they really want to get to know the new ABG Capital employees they hire. What better way to do that than by taking them out for a nice lunch at the Rivers Club! It’s a great way to put the office pressures aside have some good conversation over delicious food. Check out the Inspira Facebook page to see how great Jeff, Jason, Collin and Kathy looked!


WHO: Jeff Tapolci and Sharon Kolesar

WHAT: Wells Fargo Health Care Reform Event

WHERE: Chartiers Country Club

WHEN: Thursday May 30, 2013

20130530_Wells Fargo Health Care Speaker

Jeff got a picture of Michael Schenk in action!

You may or may not be aware that we are in the midst of a nationwide health care reform. Many things will be changing in the coming months and it’s going to affect organizations and the health care plans they provide to their employees. Jeff and Sharon, our HR Manager, were invited by Sean Andreas, our Insurance Rep, and Ben Witsberger, our Business Banker who are both from Wells Fargo. The event was called, “Health Care Reform: Strategic solutions to address the play or pay mandate,” and featured Michael Schenk, a Benefits Compliance Consultant at Wells Fargo.

Michael talks about the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and its effects on employer-provided health plans. The main topics that he covered in his presentation were the provisions going into effect next year and their impact on employers and group help plans, what strategies can minimize the financial impacts of the ACA and how to maintain a legally compliant program that is still competitive enough to attract and retain top employees. Jeff and Sharon attended this event so they can be better resources for their employees who may have questions on how the health care reform will affect them.

GuideChoice Introduces New Individual Retirement Account Program with Inspira



GuidedChoice™, an industry leader in investment advice, managed account services, and strategic solutions for retirement plans and individuals, is launching a new individual retirement account (IRA) savings option that will utilize the Inspira® IRA platform. The new program will give current retirement plan participants, who access advice through the GuidedChoice platform, the ability to easily rollover assets into a GuidedChoice IRA. Additionally, individuals not currently using GuidedChoice will be able to open a GuidedChoice IRA and receive the same quality advice and affordable managed investments as plan participants.

“As defined contribution plans such as 401(k)s have grown to become the primary retirement tool for many Americans, the industry has responded with an impressive range of investment, advice, and management account solutions to help people make the most of them. But there is a gap for investors who leave their employer’s retirement plan – or who don’t have access to one in the first place,” explained David Bernard, Chief Client Officer for GuidedChoice.

Bernard continued, “To help meet this need, we created the GuidedChoice IRA. This innovative solution runs on the same GuidedChoice platform that powers our offerings for 401(k) and other employer sponsored retirement plans. With the introduction of this new service, IRA investors can enjoy the same professional, independent investment advice that we give participants in thousands of employer plans. They can take advantage of everything GuidedChoice has to offer – including our easy-to-use, behaviorally-based online interface, expert customer service, and integration with our unique GuidedSpending retirement income solution.”

The GuidedChoice IRA program represents an alliance between two industry innovators. GuidedChoice is an independent investment advisory firm dedicated to showing everyday investors the way to financial freedom. Inspira, an ABG Capital portfolio company, has created an open-architecture IRA platform with eSignature account sign-up process, online servicing and accountholder support that brings down costs associated with IRA administration.

“We are delighted GuideChoice selected Inspira to deliver the GuideChoice IRA,” said Lowell Smith, President of Inspira. “We believe our partnership gives individuals the right balance of affordable managed investments and advice that is missing in the marketplace. With GuidedChoice providing advice and investment management and Inspira facilitating the IRA process, retirement savers can be sure their investments are optimized to meet their unique financial goals – with the same high levels of expertise, service, and support found in retirement plans at many of the nation’s most progressive companies.”

GuidedChoice IRA will be made available in the first quarter of 2013. For more details about the program, contact Ashley Avaregan, SVP of Sales at or 888-675-4532 x101

GuidedChoice is an independent investment advisory firm specializing in investment advice, managed account services and strategic solutions for corporate and public retirement plans, advisors and individual retirement plan participants in many of the largest defined contribution plans in the U.S. They are also the creators of the award-winning Financial Guidance Theory (FGT), developed for retirement income planning. For more information, visit

Inspira is based in Pittsburgh, PA and is owned by ABG Capital.  Inspira was founded in 2002 and provides bundled providers, recordkeepers, third party administrators, financial advisors, affinity groups, broker dealers, CPAs and payroll companies with turnkey, cost-eliminating IRA solutions. For more information about Inspira, visit

ABG Capital Among Best Places to Work in Western PA

ABG Capital was recently ranked 41st on the Pittsburgh Business Times list of 2012 Best Places to Work in Western Pennsylvania.  This list ranks 96 Pittsburgh-area workplaces.  Since 2005, ABG Capital has been honored for this recognition six times.

ABG Capital

ABG Capital

“We make a point to foster a family atmosphere here, and to know our employees feel the same way is extremely gratifying,” stated Jeff Tapolci, CEO of ABG Capital.

ABG Capital prides itself on creating a positive work culture for its employees.  To ensure success, the company abides by their mission, which is to cultivate ideas and people through C.O.R.E. (Cultivate, Overcome, Respect, and Evolve) Values for the purpose of giving back. Additionally, the ABG Capital staff participate in many team activities to help keep employees engaged.

The basis of ABG Capital’s mission statement is their C.O.R.E. Values.  To Cultivate, they encourage and support a healthy life balance for each employee.  They Overcome obstacles by combining passion and perseverance to achieve success.  They believe that Respect is achieved by earning mutual trust and exhibiting reliability. They encourage each employee to Evolve by embracing the ability to adapt and innovate.

Additionally, ABG Capital values giving back to their community.  Every quarter, they have an opportunity to donate time to a community service activity.  This past May, they spent an afternoon at the National Cemetery of the Alleghenies, where they cleaned headstones of the entire grounds.  Next month, the staff will volunteer their time at the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank.

Lastly, ABG Capital believes in keeping morale high and enhancing a team environment by featuring a variety of activities.  Some of their favorite opportunities to gather as a group include their annual softball and flag football games.  Last Friday, they celebrated their recognition of being one of the region’s best places to work by hosting a wine and cheese event for all employees to partake in.

Looking ahead, ABG Capital will continue to focus on people and culture, which will allow them to create a work environment in which both business and individuals thrive.  They hope to continue their trend of being named one of the region’s best places to work in the future.  To learn more about ABG Capital, please visit

ABG Capital Portfolio Company, VoIP Innovations, Launches Wholesale VoIP Channel on TMCnet

VoIP Innovations TMCnet MicrositeTMCnet, a global, integrated media company helping clients build communities in print, in person and online, announced that the Wholesale VoIP channel, sponsored by ABG Capital portfolio company, VoIP Innovations, has been launched as the newest addition to the TMCnet Online Community program.

The Wholesale VoIP Channel is designed for individuals involved in the VoIP and telecommunications industry interested in learning about and acquiring wholesale VoIP services. Information on the Wholesale VoIP Channel addresses issues important to these individuals interested in how to stay ahead in the ever-evolving and competitive VoIP space. Visitors to the Wholesale VoIP Channel can find valuable resources such as feature articles, industry news, white papers, free product trials and e-demos.

The Wholesale VoIP channel can be found at:

“VoIP Innovations is pleased to join forces with TMC, the leader of communications and technology media,” commented Jason Tapolci, President of VoIP Innovations. “TMCnet is known for providing valuable content, and we’re thrilled to sponsor this forum where people can learn more about collaborative, online project management.”

VoIP Innovations is a wholesale VoIP origination and termination carrier for over 1000 ITSPs, Hosted PBX providers, call centers, calling card providers and carriers. Specializing in providing the largest DID and termination VoIP footprints in North America, the company has played a central role in the growing world of VoIP for over 10 years. Boasting the experience, extensive network and dedicated staff, VoIP Innovations has been bringing its customers’ businesses to new, sophisticated levels to achieve a strong competitive edge. Additionally, the company offers the nation’s largest telecom providers with the most affordable and efficient wholesale VoIP rates and network footprint needed to remain competitive, such as its proprietary Titanium III platform, which enables customers to deploy VoIP services in real-time via their cloud service.

“TMCnet welcomes VoIP Innovations’ channel into our Online Community program,” stated TMC President Dave Rodriguez. “VoIP Innovations is a well-respected wholesale VoIP provider that shares our vision of advancing new technologies. Our Online Community program is a powerful Community-building vehicle assisting our partners in building their brands, while contributing to the vast array of valuable content which drives traffic to TMCnet, the most-visited communications and technology website in the world.”

TMCnet is the leading Website for communications and technology professionals. TMCnet is visited by 1.5 million unique monthly visitors and generates more than 60 million page views every month, according to Webtrends.  TMC is celebrating its 40th anniversary as a global, integrated media company that helps clients build communities in print, in person, and online.  TMC publishes the TMC’s CUSTOMER Magazine (formerly Customer Interaction Solutions), INTERNET TELEPHONY, Next Gen Mobility, and Cloud Computing magazines., which is read by 1.5 million unique visitors each month, is the leading source of news and articles for the communications and technology industries. TMC is the producer of ITEXPO, the world’s leading B2B communications event. In addition, TMC runs multiple industry events:  Cloud Communications Expo; Cloud4SMB Expo; CVx (ChannelVision Expo); DevCon5; HTML5 Summit; LatinComm Conference & Expo; M2M Evolution Conference & Expo; Mobility Tech Conference & Expo; MSPAlliance MSPWorld; StartupCamp; Video World Conference & Expo and more.  For more information about TMC, visit

VoIP Innovations is owned by ABG Capital, which is based in Pittsburgh, PA.  VoIP Innovations provides wholesale VoIP services to Carriers, ITSP’s, Calling Centers, Calling Card Companies and SMB/Enterprise. These services include VoIP Origination, Termination, Toll-Free, 411, e911 (News – Alert), Caller ID, CNAM and more.  VoIP Innovations was recently awarded #744 on the 2012 Inc. 5000 list and #12 on the Pittsburgh Business Times 100 List of Fastest-growing Pittsburgh-area Private Companies.  For more information about these companies, please visit and

ABG Capital’s Portfolio Company, InspiraFS, Enters Strategic Partnership with Benefit Trust Company

ABG Capital portfolio company, Inspira, the retirement industry’s low-cost IRA provider, has signed an agreement with Benefit Trust Company that gives Inspira another Custodial and Trading platform to offer to its clients. The two companies are also planning to mutually market Inspira’s IRA rollover services to the Benefit Trust Company’s existing clients and prospects.

“Not only are we adding a third custodial and trading option for our growing list of partners, but we’re opening a door to new markets and new relationships,” said Lowell Smith, President of Inspira. “We believe Benefit Trust Company shares our long-term vision for this relationship, and we’re both excited to get started.”

Benefit Trust Company, a privately owned, non-depository trust company based in Overland Park, Kansas, joins Mid Atlantic Trust Company and MG Trust as IRA custodians on Inspira’s platform. The partnership with Inspira allows Benefit Trust Company to further expand its already robust suite of IRA services for its current partners while also providing another attractive service offering to prospective clients.

“This partnership is a win-win for us,” said Bradley Scafe, President of Benefit Trust Company. “We believe that by utilizing an up-and-coming platform like Inspira’s, we’ll be able to retain assets that often transfer out of our platform as a result of automatic and voluntary IRA rollovers, enabling us to maximize our current business and increase our marketability going forward.”

Inspira was founded in 2002 and provides bundled providers, recordkeepers, third party administrators, financial advisors, affinity groups, broker dealers, CPAs and payroll companies with turnkey, cost-eliminating IRA solutions.  They are owned by ABG Capital and are based in Pittsburgh, PA.  To learn more about these companies visit them at and