If you want to sell your business as quickly as you can and for the best price possible, you’ll need to prepare thoroughly and stay on top of every stage of the process. There’s no magic formula that will guarantee a smooth passage from A to Z but there are some do’s and don’ts that will help steer you in the right direction.
- Have a file of orderly paperwork ready for your prospective purchasers to view. Well-kept accounts, cash flow figures and an insightful business summary will help convince any would-be buyer that your business is a sound investment.
- Showcase a well-filled pipeline of orders. While buyers will be interested in your past performance, they’ll also want to know that the future is in great shape, too. So, confirm as many contracts and supplier arrangements as possible and be sure to highlight any recurring revenues.
- Keep your foot on the pedal. Even though you may feel like you’re winding down for the holidays, this is not the time to slack off. Well-managed, profitable businesses will always attract serious buyers so make sure you put in the hours.
- Set too high an asking price. This is an easy one to get wrong and could not only drag out the sales period but may also result in repeated reductions. Any valuation will rest on a combination of factors location, brand, track record and potential for growth – check out the for a ballpark figure..
- Lie. There’s nothing wrong with presenting your business in a favourable light but don’t be tempted to embroider the truth by exaggerating the size of your customer base or embellishing your profits. Your buyer will bring in professionals to perform due diligence at some stage and if the figures don’t add up, you’ll lose their trust – and any chance of a sale.
- Be inflexible. Obviously, you’ll have your own red lines, although remember that the final terms and price will be decided by mutual agreement. So, stick to your guns where it’s important but don’t let negotiations stall over a minor issue. Forge a good relationship with your buyer and you’ll make a better deal.
Keep your eyes on the prize
There’s no one-size-fits-all approach to selling a business but if you spend some time and energy preparing your business for sale and employ a little common sense and flexibility along the way, you’ll reap the rewards at the end of the process.
Posted on December 13, 2018 | sell a business, how to sell a business