Planning and preparation are essential to achieve the best outcome.

Effective and efficient planning and preparation will allow the sale of your business to progress in a controlled manner, avoiding unexpected issues arising along the way. We will spend time getting to understand your business and the key aspects that drive its success.

Review

Review

We will undertake a review of your business to identify areas that require improvement. These may be financial, operational or involve changes to management to reduce the degree to which the business is reliant on you. The focus is to have a business in the best possible position prior to going to market.

Tax and pension planning is also essential. We have the expertise to ensure that an integrated tax and wealth management plan, from pre-sale planning to post-sale investment, is ingrained in the sale process.


Process

Process

Every business sale is individual, but the likely steps can be generalised as follows:

  • You decide that selling the business is your aim
  • You spend some time managing the business to get you the best price from a sale
  • You decide that the time is right for sale
  • A range of potential buyers to approach is selected
  • Each potential buyer is sent an anonymous summary of the opportunity
  • Buyers who are interested in the business (and sign a confidentiality agreement) are sent an "information memorandum"
  • Offers are received and a preferred buyer is selected
  • Heads of Terms are agreed (which are not legally binding)
  • The preferred buyer investigates the finances and position of the business ("due diligence")
  • The offer is finalised
  • The legal agreements are finalised and signed at a completion meeting

Valuation

Valuation

The only accurate valuation of a business is the price someone will actually pay for it, but when selling a business it is useful to have an expectation of what that price might be. Your first involvement with a corporate finance adviser is often getting a valuation to work out whether the time is right to sell now or whether changes need to be made increase the potential value. Key things to consider in a valuation are:

  • Attractiveness of the sector
  • Amount of debt or cash in the business
  • Profitability and the potential for growth
  • Level of investment needed to generate the growth (or working capital to sustain it)
  • Quality of the management and workforce
  • Quality of the customer base
  • The value your customers place on your product and/or service

We will consider these factors and combine them into a model which gives a value. Not only does this allow you to understand how much you might get from a sale now, but it also helps you to understand what changes could be made to your business to increase its valuation. Whether you require a valuation to start the selling process now, or in the future, we are here to help.


Lifetime Cash Flow

Lifetime Cash Flow

Deciding when to sell your business is very important. You need to be sure that the consideration of the sale proceeds plus income from other investments and pensions is sufficient to enable you to live the life you wish, bearing in mind that the income from your business will cease.

We always recommend that an estimate of "lifetime cash flow" is done before any decisions are taken. This examines outcomes such as projected investment returns and expected living costs and highlights how much the business would be need to be sold for to secure your future lifestyle. If there is a shortfall, you can take steps to do something about it!