Building a business is a tough job but selling a business is even tougher. The difference lies in creating value vs. selling value, the latter of which is extremely complex. The good news is that you have BCMS by your side, which can help you in valuing your business and getting it sold faster.
If you are considering options for selling your business, follow this step-by-step guide for the right valuation and finding the perfect buyer.
Define the reason behind the sale
A retiring businessman would have different expectations from his business than a serial entrepreneur looking for good returns on his capital investments. Define why you want to sell your business. Is it because you are moving on to another venture voluntarily or because the current business has grown beyond your skillset? Some may even sell businesses because a lucrative offer is available. Define the needs and the reasons first and then move on to step 2.
Define your business
Your business is unique, and the buyers must get a clear idea of what they are getting in lieu of their money. Describe the need for the services/product you offer, your position in the market and even your competition. Also, let the buyers know the USP of your business. Let them know that they are not buying a sick business, but a thriving organization that could utilize some more capital and expertise to grow even faster.
Prepare for the sale
Redefine your business from a buyer’s point of view if needed. Hire a market research agency and gather some market intelligence about your position, your customers, and your competition. Talk to a legal expert and get your paperwork in order. From sale documents to intellectual property rights, everything should be in order. All agreements made in your or your business’ name should be ready to be transferred to the buyer.
Think like a buyer
If you were a buyer, you would be interested in a business that has an existing cash flow, lower debts, an excellent employee pool and a good track record too. Buyers look for established companies because they want to avoid the initial struggle of setting up a business, train employees and make contacts. They could also be looking for removing their barriers to entry in a certain region. Ensure you highlight these points about your business to find the right buyer.
You will receive several offers from prospective buyers. Don’t go for the first proposal that comes your way. You can always negotiate with the prospective new owners of the business. The negotiations could include the price at which you want to sell your business, your position in the company after the sale, what rights you will retain or give up, etc. Always keep a team of solicitors with you to get the best deal.
After your business is sold, revisit all the documents with your solicitors and ensure that the transfer of ownership was smooth. You can now move on to another venture, join a new company or enjoy a retirement.
Whenever you are stuck, revisit this page and get quick tips from the infographic below.