Assembling your exit planning dream team

For business owners who are thinking about selling their businesses to a third party or transitioning the ownership to family or key employees, one of the first things you will need to think about is who can help you through the exit planning process. You may think that it’s as simple as hiring a broker who will list your business and find you a buyer. But the truth is, there is so much more that needs to happen before you even get to that stage.

It’s important to educate yourself about the exit planning process and work with professional advisors who specialize in business transfers and have the expertise to manage ALL facets of your transaction.

There are myriad aspects to consider and serious decisions that will need to be made, and not having the right team in place could cost you. After all, you may only get one chance to sell your business and you want to do it right!

Some of the activities your advisory team will assist you with include:

  • An assessment of your personal needs and objectives
  • Business valuation
  • Business performance improvement and maximizing company value
  • Pre-deal preparation and due diligence
  • Finding the right buyer
  • Maximizing your deal price and terms
  • Personal financial and estate planning
  • Addressing potential deal killers in advance

As you can see, there are a lot of moving pieces and you want to have high-quality, experienced professionals on your side who will assist you every step of the way.

Identifying Who You Need on Your Advisory Team

Your advisory team may include a variety of professionals throughout different phases of the transition process. If you are planning an internal sale, the advisors needed will be a bit different from those for an external sale. In either case, you want to make sure you have assembled a team of advisors that will work collaboratively and in a holistic, integrated, comprehensive manner to assist you in achieving your desired outcome. 

Business Transition Advisors for an External Sale

The advisors you should work with for an external sale:

  • Business Exit Specialist
  • Personal wealth advisor
  • CPA with experience in tax planning for business sales
  • Transaction attorney
  • Business intermediary (business broker or investment banker)

The process of selling your business to a third party is a potential minefield if you don’t have the proper guidance in navigating the marketplace.

Getting prepared for a possible transaction and minimizing taxes and fees takes time, preparation, and the assistance of a skilled advisory team.

Business Transition Advisors for an Internal Sale

For an internal sale, you will most likely need the following advisors:

  • Business Exit Specialist
  • Personal wealth advisor
  • CPA with experience in tax planning for business sales
  • Corporate attorney

The internal sale must be carefully negotiated and structured to minimize taxes and fees and will require the buyer(s) to be included in the process over the course of many meetings, until an agreement is reached.  

Quarterbacking the Entire Process

Whether you will be selling your business internally or externally, you should retain a qualified advisor who will act as quarterback of the team to ensure that all work is completed on time and that your goals and objectives are the focus every step of the way. In addition, this person can provide access to specialized advisors for your unique business situation. 

If you need help assembling your exit planning dream team, please contact us. We have a network of trusted advisors across the country. Let us help you find the right advisor for your specific situation!

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