If you are looking for someone to help with the process of selling your business, chances are you’ve searched for a business broker. If you’ve already spoken with a few, you may have come across one or two who rubbed you the wrong way. Unfortunately, the profession tends to get a bad rep because many brokers are not working for their clients best interests. It’s no secret that brokers work on a success-based commission, but many of them take a volume-based approach, trying to accumulate as many listings as possible. They are not up front with their potential clients and will over promise just to get a listing, with hopes that they can make enough compromises along the way, to the detriment of the business owner. Corporate Investment Business Brokers (CIBB), has an approach that differs from most other brokerages, built on professionalism and full transparency.
Staying Goal-Focused and Realistic
We focus on the goals of the seller and tailor our approach to accomplishing those goals, whether it be a short-term strategy or long-term. A lot of Southwest Florida brokers do not tailor their approach to satisfy the sellers’ goal. They simply want to get the business listed for sale and will not deliver a true perspective. One of your most obvious goals will be to sell as quickly as possible, but a broker needs to know how to get you there. Getting an accurate business valuation is a big part of it.
We provide an accurate and realistic market analysis show business owners the current market value of their business. If that value does not meet their financial goal, we will point of the deficiencies of their business to close the gap. The process of sorting out these deficiencies may take months, or even years. When a potential seller needs to fix these shortcomings to prepare their business for sale, we perform valuations throughout the process, so they can gauge the direction it’s headed. If preparing your business for sale is more of a long-term process, we have the patience to stick with you for the duration of it, whereas many brokers may not be willing to do so if the company can’t be listed right away.
We communicate with sellers throughout the sale process. One of the top complaints that we have heard from business owners that listed with other brokers is that they never heard back from the broker after the business was listed. We strongly believe that communication is a key component to a successful business sale. Even if there is no activity on the listing, we will call or meet with the you to collect updated financials and discuss changes in the market. Our goal is to be thorough without being a nuisance.
Patience and Pragmatism
We have completed thousands of deals and know how a deal should flow. We listen to sellers and buyers to support the health of a deal and can be patient and methodical if the circumstances call for it. We will not try to push a deal along until it’s appropriate to take the next step. Emotions can run hot in a deal flow. We are experienced enough to recognize when all parties involved may need to change course to finalize an issue. We focus on issues at hand and come up with solutions or scenarios to move the deal forward, rather than ignoring them in hopes that the buyer and seller will work it out on their own. We are the professionals that have been through many, many deals and conduct ourselves as such.
At the same time, we do not fear losing the deal if it’s in the best interest of both parties. Yes, we need to close deals in order to earn our commissions and stay in business, but if it’s obvious the deal is not working out for one side or the other, we do not fear putting things on hold to focus on a particular issue or even terminate the deal in its entirety if the situation calls for it. We work hard to stay in front of issues that occur during the sale process by analyzing the potential obstacles before listing a business for sale. With that said, we will not waste time of the seller and buyer trying to force a deal through that doesn’t make sense for either side. We want to be part of the solution, not the problem.
Experience and Creative Deal Structuring
The bottom line is that experience matters. We have structured thousands of deals, over 36 years and counting, through many market changes. Knowing how to work the deal and close the gap in any situation comes with experience. Every deal is different and no two are ever the same. Closing the gap doesn’t always require a downward adjustment of the asking price. Many brokers will take this approach, but most deals are much more complex than that and have numerous negotiating points. Working capital, asset values and allocations as well as issues with scheduling, employees, landlords, banking, attorneys, accountants, are just a handful of the items that can hold up a deal. We’ve been through it all, and can get you through it, without always compromising on the asking price.
Honesty Throughout the Process
Many brokers are not upfront and are more interested in earning a new listing than setting reasonable expectations. Then, if the listing doesn’t get any traction, they hope the seller will just reduce the price until it sells. We are careful about setting obtainable expectations from the beginning. After all, if the seller doesn’t get paid, neither do we. If we are not getting buyers’ attention a listing, it’s important for us to relay that to the business owner and determine the reason why. Can we change our marketing approach? What is the feedback we’re getting from prospective buyers? We try to map out all potential obstacles, but if we didn’t do something right in the beginning, it’s important for us to be honest with the seller and examine how we can correct it.
If a business has faults, it is important to talk about these faults and offer guidance on how to correct them. We are not consultants, we are brokers first and foremost, but that does not stop us from telling a business owner their business is not ready to be sold and offer some guidance on what they can do to get it ready. Whether it is in the short-term or long-term, we can instruct you on how to prepare to sell your business. If your reason for sale is urgent and cannot be delayed, so be it. We will at least disclose our perceived notion on how the market will react to your business, so you know what to expect. If you need to earn a certain amount of money from the sale and we don’t think we can accomplish that goal within the desired timeframe, we will be honest and deliver the bad news.
Too many business brokers are not honest with business owners, don’t listen, or just don’t know what they are talking about. There are a lot of brokers out there, who will do and say anything to earn new business. They may be aware of a potential issue, but are hoping to work around it, or make compromises along the way, usually at the expense of the seller. That’s not how we do things. We are professionals and conduct ourselves as such.
If you are thinking about selling a business and need help doing it, conduct your search carefully. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and don’t just list your business with someone because they told you what you want to hear. The truth is, most businesses need some preparation before being listed, if they are going to realize their full potential. You’ve worked hard to build and run your business. Be wise about who you entrust to sell it.
If you would like to find out about selling a business, and see if yours is ready, contact CIBB. Our process begins with a no-obligation consultation and business valuation. Knowing what your business is worth and how you can improve it is a critical first step in realizing your goals.
Looking to Sell a Business?
Complete the form below to find out what it’s worth with a FREE, no-obligation, 100% confidential business valuation estimate.