The Selling Process
Bridgepoint Business Brokers has developed a unique process to sell your business. As you prepare to take your business to market, the "how" can be every bit as important as the "what".
The Bridgepoint Business Brokers process involves six key steps designed to help you navigate the complexities of your deal.
Plan the timeline: On average, it takes 6-9 months to sell a business. This is typically broken down into the valuation and business profile preparation (2 months), locating and qualifying buyers (4 months), and due diligence and closing (3 months).
Secure a professional opinion on the selling price: A business broker can provide you with a comprehensive report using common industry methodologies to give you a fair market value for your business. Financials are often recast to show full income potential to a buyer and increase the possibility of achieving the maximum fair value for your business. Work with your advisory team to determine the best asking price for the sale of your business.
Marketing: Promoting your business to find the right buyer needs a very specific marketing approach and should be customized to each business. The strategy includes several tactics like advertising and reaching out to a select group of highly qualified buyers. You need two main documents to help this process: a confidential business profile that provides a detailed overview of your business, and a one-page blind profile containing business highlights that can generate interest while protecting the identity of the business.
Find the right buyer: A broker can help save a lot of time at this stage by finding the serious buyers amongst the "tire kickers" while at the same time protecting the confidentiality of the seller and buyer. All potential buyers should be screened for their capacity to not only manage the business, but also to buy the business based on the most likely funding structure. Finding the right buyer with a strategic fit often means connecting with specific demographics or groups including immigrants, First Nations, in-province or out of province individuals, or corporations interested in acquisitions.
Making and closing an offer: Negotiations begin when an offer and deal structure are formally presented to the seller. A broker can help negotiate through this process and guide you through the closing of the deal. Buyers will go through a due diligence phase and brokers again can help facilitate answering the questions as efficiently as possible. The making and closing of deals is often time sensitive.
Creating the transition plan: In addition to celebrating the sale of your business, you will need to create a road map for transferring business relationships to the new owner. These relationships could be with customers, suppliers, employees, and others integral to the successful operations of the business. A well done exit plan helps you feel good about leaving the business and helps the buyer start up with confidence.