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The Koan Group was founded in 2001 by Kelly Klute, after a successful 25-year corporate and consulting career with such global firms as AT&T, Bechtel Engineering, Arthur Andersen Business Consulting, and Sybase.

Some of his achievements include:

Tripling revenues and quadrupling profits within a five-year span as COO of a construction and development firm.
As Senior VP and Regional Managing Director, helping a business process outsourcing startup with $65 million in initial funding grow from the three founders to over 500 associates in six months.
As interim Director of Business Development for a construction management firm, bringing in $45 million in new projects, a four-fold increase over the previous year.
What's in a name?

A Koan is popularly understood to be a riddle or puzzle with no answer. But in the Zen tradition, a Koan can in fact have many answers and is used as a teaching device. Koans are solved not by logic but by a sudden insight that indicates a new state of awareness. We use “koan” in our company name to indicate that we are unfazed by difficult problems – confident that we will find answers where others haven’t and will be able to move past obstacles, implementing solutions that address root causes and help companies tap unrealized value.
“Kelly was successful due to his ability to bring a solution focused and optimistic approach. He fostered positive relationships with all parties and was exceptional at follow up and closure. It was extremely beneficial to our company, the success of our program, and all its associated projects and stakeholders to have him involved.”

Jennifer Richer
Program Director
Hello Housing

Kelly Klute, MBA, CBB
President/Managing Principal

With over 30 years of corporate executive and consulting experience, Kelly’s career is marked by success in a wide range of areas, from financial analysis and management of a multi-billion dollar project at Bechtel Engineering to strategic planning as a regional manager at AT&T and later Director of Business Operations supporting mergers and acquisitions at Sybase. In addition to achieving the results highlighted at the top of this page, Kelly was one of the team leads instrumental in securing the largest single contract in Arthur Andersen Business Consulting’s history and co-championed the development of one of the company’s fasting growing and most profitable service lines. As interim CEO, he turned around a financially troubled construction services company in less than two years, reengineering almost all of its internal processes and reversing a multi-year decline in profits. Kelly received a BS in Business Administration & Construction Engineering from Iowa State University and an MBA from the University of California at Berkeley.

Jim Reichow
Managing Director, The Delaine Group, a Koan dba

Jim joined the Koan Group in 2005, bringing 30 years of experience primarily in senior executive positions, including serving as a college President/CEO and as General Manager of a multi-division equipment manufacturing and supply company. He has held executive positions with major corporations in the entertainment industry, where he was involved with corporate acquisitions and later managed several of the acquired entities. He was also one of the original members of the Board of Directors of the Hollywood Entertainment District, a Business Improvement District responsible for designing plans to restore the public areas and improve safety in the historic core of Hollywood. Jim holds a BS in Business Administration from Southern Illinois University and an MBA in Strategic Planning from Pepperdine University.

Community and Professional Affiliations:

Satisfied clients aren’t our only achievement. And making a difference in our community means more than just providing outstanding services to our clients and building a good reputation. At The Koan Group, we believe that one of the fundamental obligations of any successful company is to give back to our community in meaningful and significant ways, through donation of time, money, and talents. We are proud to be affiliated with and support the following professional, community, and charitable organizations (especially those that benefit children, education and families):

Licensing Organizations

California Department of Real Estate – Broker’s License #01334663
California State Licensing Board - License #452036, Class A – General Engineering and Class B – General Building; dba Kalscope Corp. (Currently Inactive)

Professional and Community Organizations

ACG (Association of Corporate Growth)
CABB (California Association of Business Brokers)
IBBA (International Business Brokers Association)
M&A Source
CBCA (Clayton Business Community Association)
BAN (Berkeley Angel Network)
IMF (Investment Marketing Forum)

Philanthropic Organizations

Bay Area Housing Program (through Hello! Housing, formerly known as Hallmark Community Solutions), benefitting developmentally-challenged
Contra Costa County Area Schools
Habitat for Humanity
Special Olympics
American Red Cross
Juvenile Foundation for Diabetes Research
Make-A-Wish Foundation

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