Trusted Advisors Needed to Sell a Business

Since you’ve been a successful business owner, selling your business cannot be that difficult, right?  No one knows the business better than you, but selling a business can be daunting to someone who is not experienced in these matters.  We recommend business owners ask themselves the following questions in order to determine their comfort.

  • Can you maintain complete anonymity so confidentiality is not sacrificed compromising your customers, employees, and vendors?
  • Are you knowledgeable in the current areas of GAAP accounting and taxation regarding a business sale?
  • Are you familiar with the most current valuation techniques and industry standards so the way you price your business is consistent with the expectations of qualified buyers?
  • Are you familiar with the most current legal cases regarding non-solicit agreements and non-compete agreements? Do you have the legal experience to understand how to protect yourself in a purchase contract?
  • Can you devote the time and energy to attract, screen, and qualify a large group of potential buyers?
  • Do you understand the due diligence process and closing procedures well enough to protect the way you represent and close your transaction?

If you were unable to answer yes to the questions above, you should consider enlisting the help of a number of industry professionals.  First of all a Business Intermediary or Investment Banker should be contacted depending on the size and complexity of your business.  These intermediaries will act as a quarterback for the business sale and will help to price, market, negotiate, qualify buyers, and protect your interests.

The intermediary should also be working closely with your Attorney or if your attorney does not specialize in business transfer, the intermediary should recommend someone to you.  Working closely with an attorney can save thousands of dollars by having a robust and thorough purchase contract review and negotiation.

Your CPA or Accountant should also be involved and should be working with the intermediary and attorney to make sure the business is being represented accurately.  Representing the business accurately and with full disclosure will help protect you from problems or litigation down the road.  The CPA should also advise you on the best way to structure the transaction for tax purposes.

Many owners do not take the time or effort to plan their exit. Take some time to think about a plan because the best exit scenarios are often planned for and structured well in advance of the time to sell.  Partnering 3-5 years before you sell with a Certified Exit Planner and a Financial Planner can have significant impact on the price attained, the taxes paid, and how the proceeds are invested to meet your financial and cash flow needs.

Selling your business can be daunting but achieving your financial and life goals using a business intermediary, attorney, CPA, exit planner, and financial planner will give you the best chance of successful exit. If you want to discuss your situation with no obligation, contact us and we will gladly assist you where we can and refer you to additional trusted professionals should you need assistance outside of our scope of service.

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