Are you trying to time the sale of your professional service business so that you exit when both your business and the economy are peaking?
While your objective to build your company’s value is admirable, here are five reasons why you may want to sell your business sooner rather than later:
1. You may be choking your business
When you start a professional service business, you have nothing to lose, so you risk it all on your idea.
As the business grows, owners naturally become more conservative because the business actually becomes worth something.
For many of us, our company is our largest asset, so the idea of losing it on a new growth idea becomes our biggest fear. We therefore become more conservative, which can hinder the company’s growth.
2. Money is cheap at present
We’re coming out of a period of ultra-low interest rates. Financial buyers will likely borrow money to buy your business, so – at the risk of over-simplifying a lot of MBA math – the less it costs them to borrow, the more they will spend to buy your business.
This should help with gaining an agreeable price for your company.
3. Trying to time a sale is a fool’s errand
The costs of most financial assets are correlated: this means that the value of your private business, real estate, and a ASX 200 company’s stock all move in roughly the same direction.
They all laid an egg in 2009 and now they are booming. The problem is that you’ll have to do something with the money you make from the sale of your company, which means you will likely buy into a new asset class at the same frothy valuation as you are exiting out at.
Trying to time it is therefore a fool’s errand. If the time is right now based on other factors, then move ahead with it!
4. Fighting cybercrime is not getting any cheaper
If you have moved your customer data into the cloud, it’s only a matter of time before you become the target of cybercrime.
Randy Ambrosie, the former CEO of 3Macs, a Montreal-based investment company that manages $6 billion for wealthy Canadian families, decided to sell in part because he feared a cyber-attack.
Ambrosie and his partners realised that they had been under-investing in technology for years, at a time when cybercrime was becoming more prevalent in the financial services space. He sold his firm to Raymond James because the cost of staying ahead of hackers was becoming too much to bear.
5. No corporate ladder to climb means you are FREE!
In most occupations, ambitious professionals must climb the ladder. Aspiring CEOs must methodically move up, stacking one job on the next until they are ready for the top post. They have to put in the time, play the right politics, and succeed at each new assignment to be considered for the next rung.
By choosing a career as an entrepreneur, you get to skip the ladder entirely.
You can start a business, sell it, take a sabbatical, and start another business: nobody will miss you on the ladder. Your second (or third) business is likely to be more successful than your first, so the sooner you sell your existing business, the sooner you get to take a break and start work on your next!
If you are considering selling your professional services business in the next few years but don’t understand how you can maximise its selling price, we recommend you start talking to us right away. The Value Builder System™ is a statistically proven methodology designed to improve the value of a privately held business. At the core of the system is The Value Builder Score™, an evaluation system driven by an algorithm that evaluates a business on the eight core value drivers acquirers take into consideration when buying companies. The Value Builder Score™ gives a comprehensive assessment of the “Sellability” of your business, whether you want to sell next year or just to know that you’re building a valuable asset for the future.
Take the questionnaire today, this value builder questionnaire. It only takes 13 mins to complete and could be the best 13 mins you ever spend to learn how you can systematically boost the value of your professional services business.