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The Importance of Professional M&A Advice

average number of months to close an acquisition resized 600

On Monday we examined when business owners expect to sell their companies based on data from the annual Private Capital Markets Project (PCMP) developed and managed by Pepperdine University’s Graziadio School of Business and Management. This survey of all key players in the use of and provision of capital in the private company space provides us with key snapshots of each group’s view of current conditions.

Lots Of Businesses To Change Hands, Pepperdine Predicts

anticipation business ownership transfer resized 600

At the beginning of the year, Pepperdine University’s Graziadio School of Business and Management published its annual Private Capital Markets Project. They have been conducting this study for years and it is always full of very timely information on the capital markets in this country.

What Business Buyers Avoid

what business buyers avoid

In the past we have published articles examining features that business buyers are really interested in. In this piece we thought we would take a look at buyers from the opposite angle and examine the features that they try to avoid when making acquisitions.

Add-On Strategy in Action

private equity firm add-on

The March 7 press release caught my eye because it was clearly an add-on strategy in action:

Dry Powder Update III – Where is it All Going to Go?

dry powder private equity firms

A few weeks ago Bain Capital confirmed what other sources have been reporting this year: namely, that private equity firms are sitting on more than $1 trillion in dry powder, the most ever since folks have been tracking this data.

Private Equity Success Story

private equity helps middle market business

All too often it seems that the media focuses its attention on negative stories regarding private equity firms. It got so bad last year that the Private Equity Growth Capital Council felt compelled to create a nice video on how equity firms really operate. The fact is, especially for equity firms that operate in the middle market (defined as companies valued below $500 million), the primary goal in any acquisition (either partial or 100%) is to grow it.

Customer Retention Post-Acquisition

customer retention after an acquisition

This is one of the most important topics you will face with any acquirer interested in buying your company: How do we ensure that we don’t lose clients? Again, as we have discussed, the biggest issue buyers face is risk. The more risk they perceive in your business, the higher the probability of post-acquisition trauma, the less they will pay you for your company and the more tied you will be to the company once it is sold.

Smaller Deals Will Drive M&A Activity in 2014

small acquisitions

Demand for smaller transactions will be up; mega deals will be down in 2014. Why? Because both strategic and financial buyers have learned that it is far less risky to make five smaller acquisitions than one huge billion-dollar deal. This realization, post-Great Recession, is driving more and more professional buyers “downstream” into the lower middle-market. For the first time in years, we have seen buyers that are more active than ever before in this niche.

Corporate Balance Sheets Drive M&A Activity

mergers and acquisitions activity

The question for the past several years has been: When will the cash on corporate balance sheets be put to work via acquisitions? As many of you know, non-financial strategic players have been accumulating cash since the end of the Great Recession. This cash balance has been steadily growing, leading many analysts during the past few years to ask when CEOs would put this key asset to work. According to a number of sources, that time may be coming soon:

The Perils of Family Succession

family succession

One of the toughest propositions that business owners face is what to do with the family business when the owner and founder reaches retirement age. Far too many entrepreneurs that we meet have long assumed that the business will be retained via family succession. This assumption often proves to be gravely wrong when it becomes apparent, often at the 11th hour, that the children are not interest in inheriting the family business. More and more business owners we encounter are finding that the long hours and sacrifices they have made over the years have negatively impacted their children’s perception of the family business.

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