Jeff Hutsell sold his company, Levels of Discovery, in 2013. Four years later, in 2017, we interviewed Jeff to find out what he recalls about the process and what advice he has for others. We’re reposting the interview because we believe stories stand the test of time and are one of the best ways to learn.
Yogi Berra would probably tell you that you can’t sell your business if nobody will buy it.
But, many people walk into the dealmaking process without considering business buyers at all. Read more
It’s a great time to be a seller. But, don’t buy all the hype. There’s a difference between what the newspaper says and what you or your clients will experience. It’s not much ado about nothing, it’s much ado about little.
In this update on 2018 M&A activity, we’ll dig into valuations and multiples, interest rates, tax reform, and the fight for talent. The conclusion will look at a few of our first-hand observations.
Remember, as always, everything we cover is in the context of our dealmaking scope. That means we’re talking about companies that are mature (not start-up’s), privately-held, and small- to lower middle market-size (revenue ranging from $1M – $50M). Read more
Chances are you’ve answered “What do you do?” with “I am…”
“I am a doctor.”
“I am a lawyer.”
“I am a chef.”
Especially here in the USA, we get a lot of our identity from our profession. Read more
If you’re selling your business and the deal’s “Close” is just two weeks away, you’ve gotten through the bulk of it.
But, there are still two weeks left of the dealmaking process and you’re not sure what “closing the deal” actually means. Keep reading to get some practical guidance for items not necessarily addressed in the legal documents, such as “Where should I be, physically, on the day of closing?” Read more
Mental models are frameworks used to guide perspective and decision making. Read more
What is social impact investment banking?
It sounds a little trendy—maybe even a bit made up.
But, it happens every day.
A business is for sale. Buyer and seller meet. It’s a match made in heaven. They’re ready to get a deal done. How is the buyer going to find the millions of dollars required to buy the business? Likely partially from you, the seller.
Selling your business requires honesty.
You must be prepared to answer the questions that buyers have in an honest, almost clinical way.
Starting strong in your business exit process involves being honest about your motivation, your numbers, your employees, your customers and your competitors.
It’s a bit like going to the doctor to get your moles checked – annoying, frustrating, a bit anxiety inducing but you come out on the other side aware of what needs to be removed and what looks a little funky but is actually just fine.
As merger & acquisition professionals, we know that much of our job is education. The work we do day-in and day-out is a little bit complicated, a little bit obscure, and a whole lot different than a business owner’s day-in and day-out work. We value and enjoy our role as educators but sometimes we get frustrated when our clients get tunnel vision and choose to focus on any problem but the one that matters. We find ourselves having the wrong conversation over and over.
Are you ready to buy a business?
Below are six questions to help you find out.
These questions are tailored specifically for the individual executive seeking to acquire a business (a different set of questions should be asked by corporate buyers). If that’s you, take some time to consider these questions.
“What do M&A advisors do?”
I find that people are often confused about what I do as an advisor at a mergers and acquisitions firm. If you search for an answer about what people within the industry do, you are inundated with posts about dog-eat-dog competition and long hours. Well, turns out, it’s possible to care about other people and get home to your family for dinner as an M&A advisor. Here’s a peek into a day in my life: Read more
“Which industry is best for
my business acquisition?”
Whether you are a corporate or individual buyer, one of your first questions in the process is likely that question.
Let me tell it to you straight – no industry is the best industry.
And I’m not just saying that so I don’t hurt any of the industries’ feelings.
You may have preferences and some industries may be better than others but, speaking from experience,
there is not a golden ticket industry that will take you to the chocolate factory of ideal businesses.
“I got an unsolicited offer on my business. What do I do?”
Not many things are more overwhelming or intimidating than when a business you respect approaches you asking that you consider selling your business. Whether you’re ready to sell or not, there is a rush of emotions: fear, excitement, trepidation, pride. Every fiber of your being wants this to work out for the survival of your business, for your employees, your family, your legacy.
You found the business you want to buy. Congrats!
There are many things that need to happen before a deal closes. One of the first steps you’ll need to take is to write, sign and negotiate a Letter of Intent (LOI) with the seller. An LOI is a non-binding document, meaning there is not a legal requirement for things to play out exactly as the document states.