Sell your business easily with broker Richard Jacobs

Selling a business can be scary, emotional and time consuming.

Being an expert Business Broker I will make the whole experience easy and smooth for you by following a 12 step process, you will get your desired price, and an opportunity for a new beginning. Let’s start with appraising your business.

Sell your business - 12 steps process

Asterisk (*) is where my differences are.

Sell your business - Two major mistakes you can make

Whether you are selling by yourself or with the help of a Business Broker, the 12 steps, mentioned above, should be mandatory.

Very often a business owner  makes two dangerous and very costly mistakes if selling without professional help.  

Two major mistakes you can make when you decide to sell your business

Mistake No 1:
Step 1 wrongly done

Not having done an objective evaluation and overview of your business and its documentation, processes and procedures.

Mistake No 2:
Skipping step 2

Selling in a rush without preparation and business improvement.

12 steps to sell your business

1. Evaluating a business and sale potential

Sell your business 1 first step is determining the value

Many business owners reach a point where they HAVE to sell rather than WANT to sell. I call it the D’s…:
Death; Debt; Dispute; Disease; Divorce; Disillusionment; Disability; Distress; D… are some of the reasons business owners have to sell.
Selling a business is not something you do everyday, it takes time and energy and if you have not been running your business today as if you need to sell it tomorrow, then its even harder.

Previously having worked with hundreds of businesses, of all shapes and sizes, I know how to quickly and precisely assess your currently sale potential, and if I believe with some quick changes it could be worth more I will tell you how.

2. Determining steps for improvement

Sell your business 2 how to improve and increase value

Only 30-40% of all business sales are successful. Main reason is poor preparation. Secondary cause is when business owners try to sell without professional help. If you want to successfully sell your business, do not sell in a rush. Together, we can define steps for improvement, including achievable goals and tools to reach them quickly. It is better to invest some time to improve than vainly wait for a buyer that will never come. 

3. Establishing price and assets for sale

Sell your business 3 determining price

Determining the value of your business is both a science and an art. The science part is analysis and interpretation of financial results and related information which is used to benchmark your business against others that have recently sold. The Art is assessing current market value, which is the expertise of the Business Broker.
Without applying both the Science and Art correctly your business may be marketed at a too low price, sells quickly and later you realize you made a mistake, however if the price is too high, it simply goes stale in the market and does not sell – also a mistake.
Together we will establish a desirable and realist price for your business.

4. Business Appraisal handover

Sell your business 4 appraisal handover

The Business Appraisal document I prepare for you is confidential, comprehensive, consultative and understandable. It will provide you with a clear picture of the price you should target to sell your business, steps to increase its value and future actions you should take if you want to sell in the future.

Since the Business Appraisal isn’t obligatory in any way, if you don’t want to sell immediately, you can use it to focus on improving the business.

If you wish to engage a trusted advisor I believe I can be of great assistance having helped hundreds of business owners across all industries to become more efficient and effective and derive more value. I will do the same for you so when you decide to sell, your business will be immediately ready for a successful sale.

5. Getting legal and accounting papers in order

Sell your business 5 getting papers in order

This step is not just about classifying documentation. Before announcing the sale, you should prepare:

  • legal barriers to entry (eliminating competition),
  • golden handcuffs for key employees (contracts),
  • positive lease arrangements,
  • contracts with key suppliers and customers, etc.

All these things create value and are likely to affect the price you get for your business. 

You can download the full list with more than 30 documents your buyers expect you to have.

The list can be frightening, especially if you must work in your business while selling it. Based on my years experience, I strongly recommend you do not do it alone.

6. Making marketing material

Sell your business 6 marketing material

Selling a business is a unique type of sale and requires specific marketing techniques. The more experience one has, the better are the results and the less money and time is wasted.

Each business sale is different and the same goes for marketing that will be applied. I will prepare marketing plans and materials that are optimal for your business. Together we will analyse them and determine the proper promotional path and tools.

7. Signing Information Memorandum

Sell your business 7 signing information memorandum
The Information Memorandum is an important document I will prepare for you. It provides a comprehensive overview of your business, past, present and future for prospective buyers. The length and complexity of the Information Memorandum will largely depend on the size of your business.
You can download key aspects of the Information Memorandum below.
 

8. Presentation of potential buyers

Sell your business 8 presenting potential buyers

When I find a buyer for your business, I will arrange the meeting and facilitate it to ensure the best outcome for both parties.

9. Assisting the buyer with documentation

Sell your business 9 assisting the buyer with documentation

Sometimes the business sale fails because the buyer can’t handle the administrative part and doesn’t want to hire a professional. Being your Business Broker, I am more then willing to help the buyer to overcome this tedious step and speed up the sale.

10. Further negotiation

Sell your business 10 further negotiation

10th step is maybe the second most important part in the process (most important is preparation). This is a were my sales experience plays a crucial role. Having spent over two decades negotiating large deals, I understand how to position the variables and get the best possible outcome for you.

11. Conditional contract and due diligence

Sell your business 11 conditional contract and due diligence

Due diligence is the final check up for both parties that everything is in order transparent and truthful. I will assist your buyers legal team to prepare contracts, Also I will coordinate the information flow to satisfy additional legal enquiries if the occur. During step 10 we will determine due diligence period.

You should consider Due diligence mandatory. While its predominantly set out for the Purchaser, it can also protect you from undesired outcomes. When it is confirmed that everything is in order, the contract will go unconditional followed by settlement and possession.

12. Unconditional contract, settlement and possession

Sell your business 12 Final step

Final step is easy if previous steps were done honestly, meticulously and professionally. 

You can find numerous articles on the topic “Steps to sell your business”.

If you want to read more from other authors, I recommend these three articles:

“Sell Your Business” by Investopedia.com

“Essential Steps to Selling Your Business” by BusinessTown.com

“Sell Your Business” by Business.govt.nz

Two easy to read articles about mistakes when selling without professional help:

“3 Biggest Mistakes When Selling a Business” by dunrush.com

“The Most Common Mistakes Business Owners Make When Selling Their Company” by Howtosellmybusiness.com