Selling your small business is much harder than you think. It’s not enough to find someone who wants to buy and then to hand over the keys. This guide is going to show you how to get a great deal on your small business quickly. It’s far from easy, but if anything it’s rewarding when all is said and done.
Who Wants to Buy?
To begin with, you have to figure out who actually wants to acquire you. This may be just one person, but you should also be proactive by going out of your way to find people who may want to buy. Ideally, this should be long before you settle on the decision to actually sell your business.
Why Should You Find More than One Acquirer?
With only one buyer, you only have one choice. That acquirer may not be the best person to take your business forward. If this is a venture that you have built from nothing but an idea on a piece of paper, you want to make sure that your company is in good hands. Multiple buyers also tend to bid up the asking price, so there’s a commercial justification to seek out more than one buyer as well.
Do You Want an Investor or a Middle Person?
This will determine how fast you sell your business. Search for someone who will run the company and it will take longer to find the right person. But find a middle person, such as an investment bank, and it becomes their issue, so all you have to worry about is the price.
Make Sure You Visit Your Accountant
You still have tax obligations when you sell your small business. Any transaction could put up your tax obligations, or in some cases reduce them. Everything about selling your small business fast involves money, so you need to meet with your accountant and continue consulting with them along the way.
Shares and Assets
Sometimes it’s better for your company to sell its assets first. This is a preference of business buyers because they have peace of mind knowing there’s unlikely to be any hidden liabilities. But if you don’t want to do this you can just pass the company over using business stock.
There’s no right or wrong decision. It differs depending on the company.
Prepare Your Company for Sale
A homeowner will clean up the property before they decide to sell it. This is perfectly normal and it enables them to have a better shot at actually selling their home. It’s exactly the same for businesses. Get everything in order first so there are no delays to the selling process later.
What Should You Clean Up?
Get rid of unprofitable customers and remove any unnecessary expenses. Your goal is to boost your business value right now. There’s nothing illegal about artificially boosting your value in the short-term. This is spring cleaning that will make you a more attractive prospect.
What Do Buyers Look For?
Always remember that people are looking for consistency in finances and consistency in sales. Buyers want to make sure that they have the best chance of success after they take over. Consistency is what keeps investors calm. Erratic results could lead to confusion and doubt, which could derail an attempted bid before it gets started.
Get the Right Team in Place
You need to have the right support team to help you sell the company. Your team will consist of a law firm and members of your own company. Try to bring together people from each department so that they can lend their expertise to marketing your small business as a viable purchase.
Find a Respectable Name
Small businesses lack the name brand value to grab the attention of big buyers. Supplement this with the help of a big investment bank or a big law firm. It may mean paying extra in the short-term, but it can increase the speed of the sale and get you more money.
Reward them Well
Whenever you get members of your company involved, you have to reward them for their work. It’s not fair to ask them to work all those extra hours, on top of their usual duties, for no extra compensation. Give them some extra compensation and keep reassuring them that they are being a valuable asset to the selling process.
This is not a process that can be rushed. Selling your small business quickly and selling it fast are two different things. Selling it fast is rushing through the process and accepting the first offer that comes along. Selling it quickly is making the process as efficient as possible so as to get the best deal without any delays.
Will you be selling your small business soon?