The first step is for us to understand the background to your business, its likely attractiveness to potential purchasers and your longer-term strategic objectives. In addition to a possible sale to an external investor, we will consider the viability of other exit options, including a management buy-out and / or company buy-back of shares.
Selling your business
Selling a business tends to be a once in a lifetime event for business owners, giving them an opportunity to cash in their hard efforts over many years and set themselves up for an exciting new chapter in their lives. This makes it all the more important to have an experienced advisor to guide them through the sale process.
We are proven to bring multiple credible buyers to the table, present your business in the best possible light, generate competitive tension, negotiate hard on your behalf and get your deal over the line as quickly and efficiently as possible. You can rely on us to handle all aspects of your business sale to ensure you get the deal you deserve.
Confidentiality is key
Our experience tells us that confidentiality is key to a successful transaction, so we protect your information and communicate with complete discretion.
We always work in your best interests, guiding and supporting you through each stage of the sale process whilst enabling you to remain in complete control of the deal.
We are considered and see the bigger picture, with a team that offers a breadth of services that range from valuing businesses and negotiating with buyers to handling out due diligence enquiries and co-ordinating the work of your legal advisers.
Our experience of acting for both buyers and sellers stands us apart from many other advisors and business transfer agents. We use this knowledge to spot opportunities to exploit and potential problems to manage.
We also combine our expertise of corporate transactions with our full range of in-house accountancy services, including crucial tax planning services, to help our clients get the very best from their business sale. Our co-ordinated service offering promises you a joined-up, comprehensive and cost-effective solution.
As an opportunity to reward key managers for their efforts and loyalty, a management buyout may be worth considering as an alternative to selling your business to a third party.
As experts in this field with a huge amount of success under our belt, we can help you present the opportunity to your management team and guide you to a successful deal completion.
You may also be interested in selling your business to all of your employees by way of an Employee Ownership Trust. There are numerous advantages to this tax efficient and increasingly popular sale option, and we can talk you through these if this is of interest.
Not ready to sell yet?
If you’re not looking to sell just yet but want to prepare for a sale in the future, there are plenty of things you can do now that will make a meaningful improvement to the attractiveness and value of your business in the future. Using our experience and business advisory skills, we can work with you to ensure you make the absolute most of the time leading up to your business sale. It is never too early to plan for the future.
The selling process and how we can help
To maximise the attractiveness of your business, nullify any potential “deal breakers” and identify and implement tax planning opportunities, we offer our clients a pre-sale due diligence service. Our findings and recommendations are presented in a written report, and the pay-back from this work is often substantial.
To help in gaining interest from possible purchasers, and without revealing its identity, we will prepare a one-page ‘teaser’ document aimed at highlighting the key attractions of your business. In addition, we will put together a full sales document, often referred to as an Information Memorandum (IM), which sets out the identity, background and key merits of your business. These documents are always signed-off by you, giving you complete control.
Utilising our comprehensive deal databases and specialist industry reports, we will agree with you a list of highly credible potential purchasers. Where appropriate, this will include private equity firms and overseas acquirers.
Using the teaser document, we will approach potential acquirers and invite them to sign a Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA). We will also confidentially advertise your business for sale using our regional, national and international networks. Only those parties that sign and return a NDA will obtain a copy of the IM.
We will compare and contrast the offers received for the business and provide you with calculations of the likely net proceeds after tax. Working on your behalf, we will negotiate with potential acquirers, with the aim of maximising the terms of any offers to ensure you get the best result.
Once a deal is agreed in principle, the main terms are set out in a short document, often referred to as Heads of Terms or Heads of Agreement. This is not usually legally enforceable, although clauses covering confidentiality and exclusivity usually are.
Using Heads of Terms as a guide, the buyer’s solicitor usually prepares the legal contracts needed for the deal. This will include the agreement of warranties and indemnities given by the seller to protect the buyer after the deal has completed. It is not unusual for several drafts of these legal documents to be prepared before negotiations are agreed.
It is highly likely that the buyer will wish to undertake some due diligence on the business so they can understand exactly what they are acquiring. We are on hand to help field and answer any enquiries made by the purchaser’s team and can provide a physical or virtual data room if needed.
In order to reach a swift and efficient deal completion, we will work with your appointed solicitor and give advice on the financial aspects contained within the legal documentation, including warranties and indemnities.
Depending upon the mechanics of the deal, there may be a need for accounts to be prepared after the deal has completed. We can assist with the preparation of these accounts, and agree any adjustment to the final sale price. If needed, we can also help with ensuring the sale doesn’t impact financially the operations of any other businesses you may own.
Our tax specialists are available throughout the process to give you complete peace of mind. They can ensure the deal is structured tax efficiently and in certain instances before the deal completes, they can seek agreement with HMRC on the tax treatment arising from the transaction.
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