A Must Read for Business Owners – Deciding to Sell Your Business

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A Must Read for Business Owners – Deciding to Sell Your Business

I recently finished an interesting book that all business owners should add to their reading list. “Deciding to Sell Your Business – The Key to Wealth and Freedom” by Ned Minor [1] explores the notion that all business owners must first decide to sell their business before embarking on the actual sale process. Mr. Minor is co-founder of a Denver-based law firm which focuses on designing and implementing exit strategies for privately held business owners. Minor has coached hundreds of business owners in this area for over 30 years. In Deciding to Sell Your Business, some of the fundamental questions […]

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The VSP Exit Starter Program – Your Wealth Transfer Survival Guide

Are you planning to exit your business in the coming decade? Have you started preparing for a successful internal transfer (e.g. family, management, employees, shareholders) or an open market sale to a third party? Do you want to maximize your net sale proceeds and achieve your goals when you exit? Do you want to be prepared in the event of a forced exit due to disability, divorce, dispute or death? If these questions don’t concern you then read no further – this program is not for you. If, however, these questions have crossed your mind and do concern you then […]

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Smart Business Owners Share a Common Goal

Are you on track to meet your business goals for 2013? What are your goals for 2014? How often do you actually write down your goals for the coming year? I find that business owners generally do have predetermined revenue and/or profit targets. While those are important, there is another goal that can have an even bigger payoff: building a sellable business. You may say that you are not ready to sell. That’s not relevant. Here are five reasons why building a sellable business should be your most important goal, regardless of when you plan to exit your business: 1. […]

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Do Not Forget Insurance When Planning Your Exit

All business owners will one day exit their business – voluntarily or involuntarily.  Insurance is a vital tool for ensuring you are prepared for an involuntary exit due to death or disability. Two of our recent files at VSP involve a shareholder death.  Our valuation expertise was required in connection with a buyout of the surviving spouse’s equity interest.  Thankfully life insurance was in place to provide income replacement for the surviving family members and for purposes of funding the buyout. Life insurance, disability insurance, critical illness and long-term care should be considered to ensure you are prepared for an […]

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Take a Picture of Your Business to Enhance its Value!

A few weeks ago a friend of mine was telling me about a new exercise routine he had been following to help him lose weight and improve his overall health. It was visually apparent to me that he had achieved success with this new program. When he showed me his progression through weekly photos of himself, however, I immediately bought into his exercise routine as well as his commitment and motivation to its success. More recently, my brother sent me a current photo of himself and one from one month earlier. He is currently training for a competition and I […]

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Why You Should Discuss Exit Planning With Your Accountant

According to a Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) study, nearly two thirds of companies consider their accountant (and lawyer) the most valuable source of information. [1] In 2009, the CEO of the Canadian Association of Family Enterprise (CAFE), Lawrence Barns, was quoted as saying “When family businesses are asked who their most trusted adviser is, 73% say it is their accountant.” [1] Does this include you? Is your accountant your most trusted advisor? Is he/she aware of when and how you plan to exit your business? When you meet with your accountant to review the annual financial statements and […]

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5 Ways to Increase Your Odds of Receiving an Unsolicited Offer

In any negotiation, being the person who makes the first move usually puts you at a slight disadvantage. The first-mover tips their hand and reveals just how much he/she wants the asset being negotiated. Likewise, when considering the sale of your business, it is always nice to be courted, rather than being the one doing the courting. The good news is, the chances of getting an unsolicited offer from someone wanting to buy your business are actually increasing. According to the Q2, 2014 Sellability Tracker analysis released in July 2014, 16% of business owners have received an offer in the […]

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Why Your Exit Planning Team Needs a Business Valuator

An independent business valuation is critical to your exit planning for many reasons. After identifying your goals and determining your financial needs, a current business valuation is the next step in the exit planning process. Other independent sources also recognize the importance of a business valuation in exit planning: “At present, being able to measure the value of the business is a critical aspect of the business succession plan.” CFIB Research, November 2012 “It is important to get a professional business valuation, since owners may grossly overestimate or underestimate the value of their business.” RBC Business Succession Planning: Your Essential […]

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The Family Business Advisor – A Key Member of the Exit Planning Team

Will the next generation want to carry on the business after you are gone? If so, are they capable? How many family members are dependent on or involved in the family business? Will the business survive a transition to the second generation? How about the third? Is a third party sale to a financial or strategic buyer an option? If these questions have crossed your mind, you may benefit from having a discussion with a family business advisor experienced with best practices that can make a significant difference to both your business and family in the exit planning process. I […]

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Contemplating an External Sale? Do Not Proceed Without an M&A Professional!

A seasoned M&A professional with experience selling similar businesses can help with positioning your business for sale, finding potential buyers, managing the entire sale process and representing you in negotiations with potential buyers. I recently sat down with Don Hilton, Founder and Managing Partner, of Distinct Capital Partners Inc. (www.distinctcapitalpartners.com) in Toronto, Ontario. Distinct Capital provides investment banking, corporate finance and advisory services to shareholders of owner operated businesses with revenues between $5M to $100M. Don has over 30 years of experience in investment banking with several Canadian investment dealers and has worked closely with business owners to assist them […]

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