For even the most experienced business people, selling a business can be a new phenomenon as it is something that most people do just once. From this, myths about the M&A process are created, which come to be believed as facts.
The below discusses the most common myths when selling a business, and the truth behind them.
The asking price is what I will receive.
As with buying a home it’s unlikely the price that you put it on the market for is what you will get, whether that be when you receive the initial offer, or when the surveys have been undertaken. When selling a business, the same can happen – buyers will view the asking price as subject to negotiation. After this, the buyer may then try to negotiate again once they have performed their due diligence on the company.
At Benchmark International, offers are on a ‘Bids Invited’ basis. This prevents a buyer viewing the asking price as something that can be negotiated. When it comes to due diligence, the buyer may try to renegotiate the initial price agreed, but Benchmark International will negotiate with the buyer on your behalf with your best interests in mind.
I know the type of business I’m looking for, so I don’t need to look elsewhere.
It’s good to have an idea of who you would like to sell to, whether that be a strategic or financial company, a large player in the same field, or somebody looking to get into your sector. Having said that, it’s best to keep an open mind of who to sell to, as your ideal buyer might not be the one who provides you with the best offer, or the one that best meets your goals.
At Benchmark International, we have a dedicated research team to source different buyers, so you have a range of options to consider to best meet your goals.
Selling is about getting everything I want.
It’s important that you have clearly defined goals when selling your company so you can articulate these clearly to a buyer. Nevertheless, this does not mean that you will get everything you want from the sale – but neither will the buyer. During the negotiation process certain compromises have to be reached to ensure both parties are happy with the deal.
Benchmark International can work with you to prioritise your goals before going to market, focusing on buyers that align with your interests.
I can still run my business while selling it.
Selling your business takes a significant time commitment from marketing to buyers and subsequently screening them, to a plethora of meetings with prospective buyers and lawyers. All this is time taken away from your business just when you need to focus on it most to maintain its saleability.
Benchmark International takes these time commitments away from you, meaning you can focus on your business.
I can sell my business without an M&A adviser.
Along with the services mentioned previously, such as help sourcing buyers, Benchmark International can help the sales process in a number of ways. A good M&A adviser knows the market, moderates the emotions of both buyer and seller, negotiates the deal, and they are a third party that can go toe to toe with the buyer, so you don’t sour a relationship with somebody you might have to work closely with post-sale.
If you are thinking about selling your business, contact Benchmark International today to see how we can help you with your exit strategy.
WE ARE READY WHEN YOU ARE
Call Benchmark International today if you are interested in an exit or growth strategy or if you are interested in acquiring.
Europe: Michael Lawrie at +44 (0) 161 359 4400 / Enquiries@BenchmarkIntl.com
Americas: Sam Smoot at +1 813 898 2350 / Smoot@BenchmarkIntl.com
Africa: Anthony McCardle at +27 (0) 21 300 2055 / McCardle@BenchmarkIntl.com
ABOUT BENCHMARK INTERNATIONAL
Benchmark International’s global offices provide business owners in the middle market and lower middle market with creative, value-maximising solutions for growing and exiting their businesses. To date, Benchmark International has handled engagements in excess of $6B across 30 industries worldwide. With decades of global M&A experience, Benchmark International’s deal teams, working from 13 offices across the world, have assisted hundreds of owners with achieving their personal objectives and ensuring the continued growth of their businesses.