There’s no way to hide that selling a business is a long process that can prove stressful. There are a lot of meetings and talks to be had, action to take, and documents to draft. Here, in the hope of demystifying the process, we try to give a brief overview of everything involved.
Reasons for Selling
There are numerous reasons for selling your business. Some of the top reasons owners sell their businesses are: they’re retiring from work, cashing in on their capital, or even moving on to a new venture. You might fall into one of these reasons. It’s also wise to consider the need for the services your business has to offer, current political and social events, and the demand surrounding competitors in your industry. Knowing and understanding your own reasons for selling your business is important before physically starting the process.
Preparing to Sell
Preparing to sell your business is not something that can or should happen overnight. In fact, professionals in the business selling arena bcms.com recommend that you dedicate at least 3 months to prepping your business for sale. It sounds crazy, but the fact is that selling a business is extremely time consuming. During your preparation you will need to carry out these 5 things:
1) identifying your business’ USPs (unique selling propositions)
2) perform research to gain industry intelligence
3) recruiting an expert for legal advice
4) get and keep paperwork (ex: deeds, agreements) in order
5) stay focused! You must continue running your business successfully until the transaction is closed!
Choosing the Right Buyer
You will want to know exactly who you’re selling your business to. This requires thorough research. Carefully analyzing the profiles of potential buyers is an important step in assessing deal options. There are many reasons a buyer would want to acquire an existing business – for example, a brand has already been established. Before the agreement is drawn up, you will want to ensure that you, the owner, and the buyer are on the same page. It helps to have a positive personal rapport with the buyer as well.
This is the last stretch! When an agreement is drawn up and agreed upon by both parties, you become the “former business owner” and the buyer becomes the “business owner.” Your business is sold!
Again, selling your established business is not a simple task to do, so it perfectly acceptable if you still feel overwhelmed! There are true pros who help from the beginning to the very end of selling your business. Alternatively, if you feel you’re pro enough to dish out some advice to others, feel free to share your own tips and advice using the #SellSavvy hashtag!