Going the Right Way To Find Your Way Out

November 9, 2015

By Graham Brown, corporate finance manager at RMT Accountants & Business Advisors

One of the issues arising from the recession was a drop in the number of businesses that were put up for sale by their long-standing owners.

There can be any number of reasons for this sort of disposal – retirement, a change in family or business circumstances, the achievement of a set commercial goal or simply an owner’s desire to do something else.

However, with the funds available for this sort of transaction being more limited during the recession, the general perception was that the value that had been built in businesses over the years probably wouldn’t have been fully realised through a sale at that point.

With the easing of the economic situation over the last couple of years, the number of company disposals has slowly increased, along with the number of buyers actively searching for the right businesses to purchase.

We’ve been involved with many company disposals both inside and outside the North East, and the key point that we always stress with vendors is that any disposal has to be planned over the long-term if they’re going to have the best possible chance of meeting personal and commercial goals.

It’s also important to remember that the deal cuts both ways, and just as it’s important for buyers to find the right acquisition at the right price and terms, sellers need to be equally careful in choosing the right company with which they’re going to make a deal.

Deciding the criteria on which this decision is going to be based, and then going through the process of finding the perfect match can take many months, or even longer.

Preparing detailed, clear, concise and realistic information on both the company’s past performance and future prospects will give potential purchasers the information they need to make their decision, which puts a clear emphasis on the forecasting work that your accounts team carries out.

The thoughts and feelings of your staff are also important to remember, especially the senior members of the team on whose skills, knowledge and contacts the success of the business often depends.

Ensuring key management is fully informed of your plans at an early stage and involve them in the disposal process is sometimes appropriate, giving them a clear view of the direction of the company, and their (possibly incentivised) role in this journey.

Failure to carefully manage this process may lead to key staff deciding their futures lie elsewhere, which could then have an impact on the value of the assets you’re looking to sell.

Finally, don’t underestimate the human side of the transaction process – if you’ve built up a business over many years, the emotional investment that you’ve made in it, and in the people that have helped you do what you’ve done, may well make letting go take some time to come to terms with.

All in all, company owners who are considering a sale in the foreseeable future would be well advised to start thinking now about how they’re going to achieve their final objectives.

– See more at: https://www.r-m-t.co.uk/blog/going-the-right-way-to-find-your-way-out/#sthash.lxeCkf5r.dpuf


Our key focus is outstanding client service. We are always on the look out for high quality team members in the following areas…

If you would like to be part of a progressive, growing practice please upload your CV here.

  • Accepted file types: pdf, doc, png.
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.