Our goal is to successfully work with you in selling your business for a reasonable price under the best terms in a professional and efficient manner.
We work with you through eight steps in successfully selling your business, including:
- Initial Contact and Discussions
- Development of a Business Profile
- Presenting Your Business to Potential Buyers
- Due Diligence Process
- Final contract negotiation
- Close and Transition
Initial Contact and Discussions
We will meet with you and discuss both your goals and your business. It is important for us to gain a clear understanding of your objectives and your personal situation. In addition, we will gather information about your business for the purpose of assessing both its value and its marketability.
We are happy to have these initial discussions at a very early stage, perhaps years before you are ready to sell. Many times, such discussions can lead to actions on your part that can help maximize the value of your business when it does come time to sell.
We will make a preliminary assessment of the value of the business. To accomplish this, we will review the financial and other information about your business and compare it to industry information. There is nor real “rule of thumb” for valuation, because value is the price that a willing buyer would pay a willing seller for the business. The state of the industry and potential buyers are usually major factors in assessing valuation. In addition, determining if “financial buyers” or “strategic buyers” are the more likely buyer will play a factor. Financial buyers are interested in a business as an investment for the income that it can produce on its own. Strategic buyers, on the other hand, are interested in a business for how it fits into their larger business. We will discuss our valuation assessment with you and discuss our perceptions of what you can expect when we take your business to the marketplace.
Development of a Business Profile
At this stage, we develop a Business Profile for the business to be sold. This profile summarizes key information about your business which can be provided to potential buyers in order for them to provide a preliminary indication of their interest in the business. This will include an overview of the history of the business, together with key financial and operating information about the business. It is important to make this document as complete as possible, because, in our experience, it will play a key role in developing the interest of the seller in making an offer for your business. The Profile will only be circulated to buyers that you approve and will always be circulated subject to a confidentiality agreement with the receiving party. We only deal with qualified credible buyers.
Presenting Your Business to Potential Buyers
After we have developed the profile of your business, we will submit your profile to various potential buyers on a confidential basis. We represent a variety of potential buyers. We will have a signed confidentiality agreement with any buyer to which your information is submitted. In addition, your profile will not be submitted to any potential buyer that you specifically do not want us to contact. Our experience often allows us to narrowly focus the marketing of your business to those buyers most likely to have an interest.
Once we have identified potential buyers with a serious interest in your business, we will proceed to the negotiation stage. At this point, we will use our experience to help you get the best possible price and contract terms possible, given your situation. Generally, we handle the direct negotiations with the seller and keep in very close contact, seeking your input and approval for each major issue.
The negotiation phase actually lasts until the sale is closed.
Due diligence is the process by which the buyer investigates your business in order to make a final decision to proceed with the transaction. It is crucial that this process go smoothly. We will work with you to make sure you are ready for the seller’s representatives to conduct their investigation. We will be available, either in person or by telephone, during the seller’s due diligence to help resolve any problems or answer any questions. Any surprises that are uncovered during this process will add to the complexity of the transaction. Therefore, we work with you in advance of due diligence to make sure we have prepared the seller for what to expect during due diligence.
Final Contract Negotiation
After due diligence, the buyers will submit a draft purchase agreement. We will work with you and your attorneys and accountants during the process. We have a good sense of the market and what is reasonable to expect in contract terms and can help guide you through this process.
We will assist in closing the transaction, making sure you are prepared with required documents and schedules. We will also assist in resolving any post-closing issues with the buyers.