Once you created a successful business, you may have felt as if you had fulfilled a lifelong dream. Many entrepreneurs only hope to reach a point in their business careers where they can feel a sense of stability and growth with their ventures. While you certainly feel proud that your business is a success, you also know when it is time to move on.
Whether you want to retire, start a new business or take a different career path altogether, you may not want your company to simply close its doors. After all, you have clients and customers that you would not want to leave out in the cold. And your company has value, either as a going concern or via sale of its assets. As a result, you want to sell your company in hopes of keeping its operation going even after you take a different path.
What should you consider when thinking about selling?
At this point in your entrepreneurial career, you may consider yourself a business-savvy person. You have likely earned this attribute since you have managed to create and run a thriving company. However, if you have never sold a company before, you may have a few things to learn and will need to take certain details into consideration, including the following:
- Keep your decision as quiet as possible. Even if you have already decided to sell, putting the news out there too soon could cause some panic among your employees, clients and customers, which could put a damper on a potential sale.
- Obtain a professional valuation of your business. If you do not know how much your business is really worth, you may be at a disadvantage when it comes time to propose an asking price.
- When it comes to an asking price, ensure that you set a realistic number. Though the company may hold a lot of value to you for sentimental reasons, it is important to remember that sentimental value holds much less weight to outside buyers.
- Make sure that you separate any personal expenses and investments from the business. If you incorporate personal expenses into the business, it could skew important numbers.
- Avoid verbal offers from buyers and get everything in writing. You do not want to jump at the first offer, and having documentation for any offers you receive could allow you to better compare those offers.
- Complete and accurate disclosure of facts bearing on the value of the business will be imperative in order to avoid legal claims asserted by your buyer.
Of course, you will need to go over numerous other factors as you prepare for the sale of your company.
Addressing legal matters
Among the many steps involved with selling a business are the legal details. As a result, you will undoubtedly benefit from enlisting the help of an experienced California business law attorney who could help you throughout every step of the selling process.