Selling a Privately Owned Business – Briefing 9 – Choosing an Adviser
As a business owner you will
almost certainly sell only once, and it’s unlikely that you will have direct
knowledge or experience of the sale process.
Accordingly, its highly
desirable to have some expert guidance and help, by choosing a specialist
adviser, and equally important to choose the right advisor for you and your
But with little experience of
advisors, how best to go about that? Here are some key questions that you can
consider and discuss with possible advisors.
- Does the firm have a good knowledge of your type
of business and markets?
- Is the firm a specialist advisor and not just a
“business estate agent”?
- Confidentiality is absolutely critical for us,
how do they control this?
- Will the firm provide you with a full service,
including initial advice on the saleability of your business?
- Obviously value and the price you are likely to
receive is a very important aspect, how does the firm assess this?
- Do they have a good feel for the economy
generally, are they able to advise you on what market conditions are like now
and is it the right time to sell?
- You may already have an idea about the kind of
buyers that might be interested in your business, how will the firm find more
and better buyers than you can do yourself?
- Selling a business is entirely new to you; can
you ensure in particular that you will get the necessary support throughout the
process, specifically with negotiations?
- Once a deal is agreed, it’s critical to appoint
good legal advisors; can the firm help you to choose appropriate solicitors?
- Finally, you need to be sure that you will be
supported throughout every step of the sale, with a personal hands-on service,
with your advisor available at all times.
As vendor you should always
meet with and discuss your potential sale with more than one advisor and it
should be easy for good advisors to provide positive answers to all the above
points. Furthermore, meeting with potential
advisors will allow you to gauge the “chemistry” between you, which will be
important as the sale process progresses, which can be quite stressful at
30 October 2019