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Is there a way for me to identify if I can afford to sell now?

Seems like a bad time to sell. Hoping a broker or someone else out there is willing to provide some advice.

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Answers (5)
Kathryne Pusch
ConsultKAP Inc./Business Brokers Network
GA

OOPS. Typo on my last response. Make that "We canNOT diagnose the situation by just "looking at you and your business." 'KAP

Apr 3, 2009
Kathryne Pusch
ConsultKAP Inc./Business Brokers Network
GA

Doug-- It is always the right time to buy or sell for some people and some businesses-- and always the wrong time for others. There are many qualified brokers who can assist you with this analysis. One has to determine the business owner's needs and do a thorough financial analysis. After this is accomplished, an expert broker can show you the pro-cons, benefits and hurdles of marketing the business today VS "later." Most brokers will offer a free initial consult to assess the big picture. You can help by getting your books in good order before calling in an advisor. We can diagnose the situation by just "looking at you and your business." Best of luck with your project, KAP

Apr 3, 2009
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Strategic Endeavors LLC
PA

This may sound obvious but you first need to determine what you need to get from the business to support your future lifestyle and then get a realistic assessment of what your business would sell for and what your taxes would be. Regarding a realistic selling price, look at what your advisor is telling you and see if it makes sense to you. You know the business inside and out and if the advisor cannot sell you on the price and terms, how would he ever sell some outside buyer. This process can be illuminating. In determining a realistic selling price for your business, the evaluator should uncover deficiencies and/or opportunities that if addressed could increase the value of your business. So even if you can't sell now and achieve your goals, the exercise could focus you on taking the actions necessary to get your business where it needs to be for you to exit.

Apr 3, 2009
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The BAF Group LLC
MD

You need to be extremely careful with valuations! They are very subjective and can be skewed in any number of ways. In the early days of my Brokerage, I was contacted by a guy who said he wanted me to sell his business and told me it was worth $2 million. I broke the sound barrier getting to him, but when I looked at his books, I had to tell the man that his business was worth 1/3 of that $2 million. Not bad, but what a jolt to him! I asked where he got the $2 million figure. He told me "another Broker" had given him that figure. I asked him why he did not list with that Broker. He said the Broker told him that it would cost him $6,000 to get the final report and list with his Brokerage. Unfortunately and obviously, the other Broker was not really interested in selling the business; his interest was in selling the valuation, which was worthless. That Business Owner got two other opinions which supported my statements, and he still owns the Business, today. Depending upon how profitable your Business is, it can be a GREAT TIME TO SELL! But you need to be informed and demand that people demonstrate their methodology. Waving big bucks in your face is a common way to get you to react without thinking. A good Broker acts transparently, so you have that kind of understanding throughout the process.

Apr 3, 2009
Terry Snyder
IM&M Solutions
WI
Premium Broker

The very best way to answer your question, is to contact a licensed business broker or other transaction expert to help you determine the "fair market value" of your business. This may well require that you have an independent third party valuation done by a certified valuation expert and accompanied by an after tax proceeds analysis to determine if the anticipated selling price will satisfy your net proceeds requirements. The Broker will help you to "re-cast" your financials from a taxation view of your business to a "fair market value" of your business in preparation for the independent valuation and capture the other relavent information required for the valuation. This is the best approach to determining if it is the right time to sell for you under any market conditions, as there are other tax implications that can affect the sale such as changes in capital gains rates, etc.

Apr 3, 2009

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