The most interest over the last weeks has been “When Is the Right Time to Sell?”
The answer to that question moves amongst how-long-is-a-piece-of-string and who really knows. Nonetheless, there are a few prime clues that I will explore with you over the next number of posts…
Ah yes, the all-important “scorecard”!
Whilst the metrics and the financials definitely form the basis of the sale, they are not usually the only reason that the sale goes ahead. Yes, they are used as first pass, but they are not always the only reason that a potential Buyer says yes or no.
As this information is asked for at the outset, best get it ready as soon as possible. Indicative of the type of information required is:
- Background to the business
- Financials (accountant-prepared profit and loss and balance sheet) for last 3 years
- Supply/Agency Agreements
- List of Top 10 Sales/Customers (for last 3 years; no names)
- List of Employees (incl. owners) – Role, salaries, history
- List of Licensees/Franchisees/Stores
- List of creditors and debtors for 30, 60 and 90 days (total)
- Online Statistics (Google Analytics)
- Lease/Property details
- Outline Owner’s involvement
- Any information that will likely impact on the future performance of the business
What is effectively being asked for here is proof of the numbers. If you’re unable to produce such reports, then think about what you can use to prove what is being claimed. Whilst a spreadsheet or two can suffice, there has to also be bank statements or PayPal records or clickbank numbers that can substantiate the spreadsheet.
To not do this opens the question of “what is for sale exactly?”
Until you can tell the metrics and financials story, then the business may not be ready to take to market after all…