News for Sellers

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10 Important Things to Consider When Selling Your Business

There are some very important things to consider when selling a business to ensure that the process goes smoothly and that an owner receives maximum value at the time of sale: 1. Clearly define your goals, objectives and time frames for selling your business.  It is critical you understand what your priorities are as it will influence any subsequent plans. 2. Consider what you will do after selling your business.  Do you want to stay with the business, make an immediate departure, or do you desire somewhere in-between?  Is retirement really for you?  Many ex-business owners feel stranded post sale. 3. Have up-to-date information.  Robust financial information should be available for the previous three to five years, as well as your year-to-date management accounts.  A detailed business plan and quality budgets or forecasts will assist you and your advisers in gaining an accurate view of your business prospects and range of values. 4. How do I kick-start the process?  Start by engaging a qualified business broker to help guide you through this complex process – a small investment in advice at the outset makes for a much smoother process. A business broker will work alongside your existing advisers (lawyers, accountants etc) and will provide the advisory and transactional services required to achieve an optimal outcome. 5. Develop a tailored transition plan.  A specialist adviser can help match your objectives with a tailored transition plan to get the job done and help you achieve your goals. 6. Who is going to buy my business?  You may have some ideas already and your business broker should have a network of qualified buyers – national and/or international – actively seeking quality business opportunities. […]

Median Cash Flow of Sold Businesses Reaches Record High

BizBuySell.com's First Quarter 2015 Insight Report shows strong transaction activity and robust business financials as the service and retail industries continue to drive market growth. BizBuySell.com reported that small business transactions continued at a strong pace in the first quarter of 2015, growing 6 percent from the first quarter of 2014. A total of 1,830 small businesses were reported sold in Q1, continuing a two-year trend of exceptionally robust activity in the business-for-sale market. The full results are included in BizBuySell.com's Q1 2015 Insight Report, which aggregates statistics from business-for-sale transactions reported by participating business brokers nationwide.

The Gap Between Business Owner Expectations and Actual Selling Process

BizBuySell.com survey of small business owners and business brokers shows many owners are unaware of what to expect when it comes time to sell their businesses. San Francisco, CA - BizBuySell.com, the Internet's largest business-for-sale marketplace, today released a new study on how small business owners' perceptions of the sales process compares to what business brokers actually see within the market. The survey, which polled more than 500 small business owners and 300 business brokers from across the nation, revealed some key gaps in owner expectations compared to broker experience and insight. Owners Say They Want Best Fit Buyer, Brokers Say Money Wins in End When it comes time to sell a small business, one of the first steps a seller takes is to determine their top sale goal. The survey findings highlight a disconnect between small business owners' highest sale priority and brokers' experience. Forty-one percent of small business owners listed "a good buyer fit (future success of the business)" as their top sale priority, while an identical 41 percent of brokers said getting the best price is the main goal when approached by sellers today. Brokers are also more than twice as likely as owners to believe the primary value of using their services during a business sale is their "effectiveness in getting the owner more money." Sellers, on the other hand, put more emphasis on brokers' networks, with nearly half (47 percent) listing it as the main driver for using a business broker.

Small Businesses Are Selling Faster Than Ever

According to new data from business-for-sale marketplace BizBuySell, the median number of days it takes to sell a small business has been on a steady decline since mid-2012. San Francisco, CA – BizBuySell.com, the Internet’s largest business-for-sale marketplace, released a new report on business sale times, which found that small businesses are selling faster than ever in today’s market. The data offers a new perspective for analyzing trends in the small business market. BizBuySell reviewed its database of businesses sold from 2007 to 2014 and analyzed the median length of sale, which is based on the time a business is listed for sale on BizBuySell.com to the date it is reported as sold. According to the report, the median business sale time declined 23% from its peak of 200 days in Q2 2012 to just 153 days in Q4 of 2014 – the lowest of any quarter since BizBuySell first began tracking sales data in 2007. While there was the usual seasonal increase in sale times in Q1 2015 (likely due to carryover from the holidays each year), the overall trend over the last three years is clearly downward. […]

Planning to Sell Your Business? Here’s How to Get Maximum Value

by Mary Ellen Biery Called by at least one group of authors “The $10 Trillion Opportunity,” a lot has been made of the deal activity expected to arise from baby boomers retiring or otherwise exiting from their businesses. Estimates of how many privately held businesses could change hands, and of what kind of value they represent, vary. Data from the U.S. Small Business Administration shows that nearly 52 percent of business owners are over age 50 — a larger share of people nearing retirement age than in the employment population at large. One market researcher estimates as many as 3.8 million firms could hit the market over the next 20 years. A recent survey by Pepperdine University found that 64 percent of business owners planned to transfer their ownership interests within the next decade. Whatever the estimate, it’s safe to say that many business owners will fail to capture the full value of their hard work through an ownership transfer. Business broker and website author Jim Stauder estimates some $3 trillion in value – or most of the opportunity for owners of small businesses (those with 49 or fewer employees) — will be left on the table due to owners’ failure to plan their business exits. […]

Finding the Right Business Broker For Your Business

By Curtis Kroeker When it comes time to sell a small or medium-sized business, most owners will benefit from working with an experienced business broker. Although it’s possible to sell your business on your own, few business owners have the necessary experience and time to execute a successful business sale while simultaneously operating and growing their business–a critical focus as a performance downturn is the last thing an owner wants when selling his/her business. To maximize their business sale outcome and ensure they sell for a fair market price, most owners will find it helpful to assemble and utilize a sales team consisting of an experienced business broker, a trusted attorney, their CPA and other professionals. By leveraging the expertise of business transfer experts, sellers can concentrate on keeping their companies strong–which ultimately results in a higher sale price. […]