As a business owner, one of the biggest challenges is keeping as much of your hard earned money as possible in your own pocket. Last year some clients of mine wanted to find a way to do just that. So I sat down with their CPA and tax attorney to come up with a solution to help do just that for this couple. Let me set the stage for what we did for them.
We’ve reached the point in our Building a Sellable Business series where you’re ready to close on your business sale! Maybe, you’ve even scheduled the closing. You’ve got your signature pen in hand, and you’re ready to sign on the dotted line. But out of nowhere, plans change. While some changes can be good, most changes before the sale of your business negatively affect the closing of your business. Changes usually mean that the buyer has changed his mind. So let’s look at 4 common reasons a buyer backs out of the sale of a business. Then, let’s figure out how to handle those disruptions.
The due diligence period has just wrapped up, and teams are finalizing everything for the sale of your business. You’re ready for the “payday” – but then you get a call from one of your exit team members. The buyer has asked for a last-minute price reduction… a re-trade. Hearing those words will either have you wondering, “what’s a re-trade?”, or if you have done this before, send you into a tailspin of anxiety. Whichever person you are, you need to know why re-trades occur in a business sale so that you can see if there is anything you can do in advance to avoid hearing that dreaded word.
You’ve nurtured your “business baby” for years and years and know all about it. Consequently, only you have knowledge of unrecorded company processes and procedures. You have information in your head that the buyer wants to know. In fact, his team is probably asking, “What are we missing?” The due diligence process after the buyer issues a Letter of Intent and during the drafting of the purchase agreement is perhaps one of the most stressful dealings for the business seller. Candidly, that’s because the buyer is trying to figure out why your company is not worth what you think it’s worth. The buyer is digging up dirt on your business while you’re trying to remain calm under pressure. In this post, I’m going to walk you through 6 steps in a due diligence process that will help you navigate these murky waters and finalize that protective purchase agreement.
In Post #31, I talked about how the purchase agreement can protect you, the seller against future claims and liabilities against your company. Now, I need to show you what an actual business purchase agreement looks like. Since you know that you have certain protective terms and conditions to include, you need to know where to put them. Yes, this document can protect buyers and sellers. However, it does so much more than that. Essentially, the purchase agreement outlines and answers everything about the business’s sale.
In our Building a Sellable Business series, you’re finally ready to sell! Negotiations between your team and the buyer’s team are all wrapping up. However, the last step, the closing of your business sale, hinges upon acceptance of a purchase agreement by both buying and selling agents, and many sellers gloss over the details within it to get to the closing table as quickly as possible. But now is not the time to become lax. This article is designed to give you some of the many things to look out for as you review the hundreds of pages of legal “mumbo-jumbo.” After all, the wording in the purchase agreement protects you from legal or financial risk after the sale of the business.