Every business will either eventually either close or be past to the next generation or sold to a new owner. That demands an exit strategy even if the business is new. Your exit strategy will vary based on what assets are part of the business. There are many important aspects to realize as transferable assets.
1. Real estate and improvements. Does your business have a visible commercial space that any subsequent business owner would desire? What about any specialized equipment or build-outs that are critical to the business you own?
2. Customer base.
Do you keep a database of customers that a new owner would need to continue the business? If not, why not?
3. Website and Social media followers.
Your website is an asset that is part of the value of your company. Particularly, your domain name may be worth hundreds or even thousands of dollars. Followers on Facebook, Instagram and other media can be worth paying for to a new owner.
This is referred to as "goodwill." It's also considered "blue sky." Your reputation as a business entity can be a positive or negative as it relates to value. How you have managed reviews and customer complaints can affect your valuation and a prospective buyer's impression of any business.
5. Financial value.
Most business transitions involve the buyer obtaining financing to acquire your "going concern" business. Having accurate financials that are current will be a critical part of justifying the sales price and make it possible for the buyer to be approved for a loan. While every business owner likes to minimize their tax liability, it is important to not understate revenue or overstate expenses when filing tax returns.
Having an independent analysis of your financials that demonstrate the amount of financing the business can support as part of your sales strategy can not only help you get your price, but also assist a buyer when they go to their lender.
Deferred maintenance of the business property tells a story of the profitability of a business. In residential real estate, "staging" has become an important part of the sales process. The same is true of commercial and business sales. If the buyer feels they will have to make immediate improvements in the appearance, signage or other upgrades it will dramatically affect what they will be willing to pay.
Waking Girl Company has helped many of their clients from coast to coast in the succession process. Having decades of experience in real estate sales, lending and marketing with members of their team, makes them a great first contact in making plans to sell.