We have performed numerous successful succession planning assignments in many circumstances in different industries. Bruce Horsley has earned the professional designation CEPA (Certified Exit Planning Advisor) from the Exit Planning Institute. Some of the succession plans have involved transfer of shares to Employee Share Ownership Plans and others have ended in the successful sale of the business to synergy buyers who paid a significant price premium.
Prudent planning in advance can increase the value of your business and make the transaction go easier. Many business owners are too busy to plan 3-5 years in advance to maximize value.
The best way to predict the future is to create it. You need an exit plan if you’re going to leave your business on your terms. The sooner you start to plan the more control you have over your future.
All Businesses Are Different – It Depends on the Circumstances
In getting the business ready for sale and exit planning it is important to get a clear understanding of the business, the industry, and its future and the owners and owners family background.
The business may be sold differently depending on the circumstances and who the business is being sold by:
- Real Estate Broker
- Business Broker
- Owner with accountant’s involvement
- Mergers & Acquisitions Advisor
10 Components of a Successful Exit Plan
- Goals & Objectives
- Personal Financial Plan
- Contingency Plan
- Team Approach
- Business Valuation
- Strategic Analysis
- Exit Options
- Tax Plan
- Detail Action Plans
- Your Commitment
Plan is just a
Why Exit Plans Fail
- Business owner is not mentally prepared
- Business owner has not allowed enough time to implement plan
- Business owner is unrealistic in value of business compared to financial needs of retirement plans
- Inappropriate advisors or trusted advisor are not kept updated of changes in plan
- Advisors do not collaborate, have their own agenda or not competent
- Bad market conditions i.e. recession, changes in industry/technology
- Wrong exit strategy for goals and objectives of business owner
- Business not ready for sale, i.e. too late to implement key management contracts
- Business Valuation ignores value hidden in the balance sheet
At the Start of Exit Planning, Ask is the Business Ready for Sale?
Do a businessman’s review of the business i.e. do a detailed walkthrough of the business and assess:
- People – capable or should they be changed
- Management – capable, non-compete
- Sales – staff need non-solicitation agreements of customers
- Marketing – What competitive advantages do you have
- Competitor review – How do you compare, what are they up to
- Operations review
- Vendor review
- Equipment review
- Legal due diligence
- Accounting due diligence
- Other due diligence considerations
- Perform due diligence tests – often fail somewhere – takes time to correct
You need a business valuation at start of exit planning process and then updated just prior to sale to know what the business is worth on sale and who to sell it to:
You need to:
- know the drivers of value within the business
- outline key business and industry risks
- include a pricing analysis to determine value to different types of special buyers, financial buyers, family buyers, management buyers
- determine if need real estate appraisal, equipment appraisal
- assess balance sheet changes- non business assets need to be removed in tax effective manner.
Value Builder System™
Planning/organizing 1 year in advance can still provide significant financial benefits. We can assist with this planning. We are members of the Value Builders Program and Bruce Horsley is a certified value builder who is trained to provide the Value Builder System Engagement to his clients.
The Value Builder System™ is a statistically proven methodology for increasing the value of your Company.
The Value Builder engagement involves preparing a Value Builder Assessment score of your business and comparing your score to the industry average for your size of business and then delivering models of client training related to:
- Financial Performance
- Growth Potential
- The Switzerland Structure
- The Valuation Teeter-Totter
- The Hierarchy of Recurring Revenue
- The Monopoly Control
- Customer Satisfaction
- Hub & Spoke
The purpose of the client training/change management is to increase the Value Builder Score of the Company thereby increasing the operating value of the business. A large number of business owners have used this system to significantly increase the value of their businesses.