Top Tips for a Speedy Business Sale
October 14 2020 - If you are ready to sell your business and move onto a new chapter in your life, then there will seem to be a never ending list of things to see to, issues to solve, and, of course, paperwork to sign. At times, it can be difficult to believe that there is any end in sight - although, of course, there will be, and there are plenty of things you can do to ensure that it comes around in a timely manner.
With that in mind, here are a few tips for ensuring a quick and seamless exit from your company.
Talk to the Professionals, Sooner Rather than Later
Professional solicitors and accountants, for instance, will provide vital support with planning for the sale in advance, ensuring that the process is able to transpire as smoothly as possible. You will need to work alongside these advisors throughout the entire process of the sale. It is therefore advisable, although not essential, to work with a local firm with whom you can create a close partnership.
Get Your Business in Good Shape
It is impossible to overstate the importance of preparing your business for potential buyers. This is why it's always a good idea to have an exit plan years in advance, ahead of an expected or unexpected business sale.
Getting your business healthy and ready for buyers will take plenty of time on your part. You will need to make a clear plan for the business as it continues without you, and how to make this transition seamless.
Make sure you have robust documentation and processes in place - such as employment contracts, your staff handbook - and that your finances are properly recorded and audited.
Anticipate Issues, and Resolve Them Before They Derail the Transaction
It is never a good idea to bury potential issues under the carpet - more often than not, they will crop up once again and pose a much bigger problem - particularly when you are trying to work through a transaction.
If, for example, your business is suffering from an ongoing employee dispute, then mediating these issues well in advance of the sale will stand your business in much better stead. The same goes for issues with contracts or leases - while mitigating the issue might take more time now, it will save you a much bigger headache further down the line.
Sort Through Your Assets with a Fine Tooth Comb
This is essential, both for you and for your prospective buyer. You should take the time to ascertain exactly what your business includes, and what will be passed onto the buyer; the extent of your assets, shares, and liabilities, your IP rights, employees and premises, should all be clarified before the sale begins.
Similarly, you will want to make sure that your valuable assets, such as intellectual property, are properly protected, and that these protections will be able to be passed on to your buyer. You should find out whether or not you will need permission from third parties or shareholders before you start the process of the sale.
Make Sure Any Paperwork Is Signed and Actioned Promptly
The sale of your business will be paved with paperwork - all of which will seem to take priority over the rest. This is where your solicitor will prove invaluable; they will be able to advise you on what documentation you will need, and when it should be signed.
While not essential, using a local solicitor with significant experience in corporate law will prove extremely beneficial. For businesses in the Gloucestershire area, for example, search online for 'solicitors Cheltenham' - that way, you can ensure that they will always be close by, and know the specifics of your matter, as and when you need advice or assistance.