Private Equity and M&A in 2014

Posted by Carl Doerksen on August 22, 2014 at 8:30 AM

On a monthly basis, Mergers and Acquisitions magazine polls a group of private equity professionals regarding their expectations for M&A activity in the pending months. During the past year or so, the survey has shown a continued positive trend in private equity optimism regarding getting deals done this year.

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Topics: m&a activity, private equity firms, sellers market

New Middle Market Caucus Formed in Washington

Posted by Carl Doerksen on August 20, 2014 at 8:30 AM

Finally some good news coming out of Washington for owners of lower middle-market companies! A few weeks ago a new caucus was announced that should help to shed light on the needs of smaller business owners in this country.

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Topics: middle market, economy

How Do Equity Firms Operate?

Posted by Carl Doerksen on August 18, 2014 at 8:30 AM

Throughout the years we have examined the ways that private equity firms operate, especially those companies that focus on the lower middle-market (typically companies valued below $100 million). What we have learned, contrary to what the business media often reports, is that firms focused on the lower middle-market invest in companies to GROW them by providing additional capital, marketing skills, managerial talent, and financial controls. They typically do not acquire assets in this niche to tear them apart and sell them separately.

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Topics: partial sale, private equity firms, growing a business

Why Does M&A Activity Continue to Surge?

Posted by Carl Doerksen on August 15, 2014 at 8:30 AM

The title in the Forbes piece summed it up nicely:

Why More Entrepreneurs Will Get A Phone Call Worth Millions

As we have discussed before, current merger and acquisition deal volume and values are surging close to pre-recession levels. And according to Forbes, more and more buyers are simply cold calling businesses around the country looking for good deals (and possibly aren’t limiting themselves to good deals in their desperation to acquire).

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Topics: m&a activity

Due Diligence Issues – How to Alleviate Risk

Posted by Carl Doerksen on August 13, 2014 at 8:30 AM

We are often asked by business owners who attend our M&A workshops to give them ideas regarding areas they can work on before due diligence begins to reduce the perceived risk in their business. If you are not familiar with the due diligence process, typically it is the 60- to 90-day period after the LOI (letter of intent) is signed where the seller provides detailed information to the buyer about his/her business. It can be an intense process, especially if you are unprepared, and can literally chew up much of your time, even if you have an M&A advisor working with you.

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Topics: thinking like a buyer, due diligence

When is the Right Time to Sell a Business?

Posted by Carl Doerksen on August 11, 2014 at 8:30 AM

Recently Sageworks, a financial information company that has been gathering data on small to mid-sized businesses for years, released a study examining the current performance of the business environment for privately held businesses. What they found was very encouraging:

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Topics: selling a business, exit planning, timing

Why Intangible Assets Matter When Selling A Business

Posted by Carl Doerksen on August 8, 2014 at 8:30 AM

This week we’re revisiting a few important topics we’ve discussed in the past. Today we explore the role intangible assets play during the process of selling a business. For the entire piece, read “Identify Your Intangible Assets To Attract Buyers.”

A Peter Drucker quote perfectly summarizes the dilemma between sellers and buyers: 

The buyer rarely buys what the seller thinks he is selling.”

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Topics: intangible assets, selling a business

The Real Advantage of Partial Business Sales

Posted by Carl Doerksen on August 6, 2014 at 8:30 AM

This week we’re revisiting a few important topics we’ve discussed in the past. Today we explore the upside of a partial business sale. For the full piece, read “A Partial Sale – A Great Way To Finance Your Growth.”

Quite frequently business owners approach us during our exit planning conferences and say, “I am not interested in selling 100% of my company. I have plenty of great ideas about how to grow it and I am still motivated to do so, but I just can’t raise the capital. Banks have been no help. Are there any options for me?” Fortunately the answer is yes!

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Topics: partial sale, growing a business

Are You Mentally Ready To Sell A Business?

Posted by Carl Doerksen on August 4, 2014 at 8:30 AM

This week we’re revisiting a few important topics we’ve discussed in the past. Today we explore what business owners should consider when deciding to sell a business. For the full piece, read “Selling A Business – Deciding To Do It!

One of the most important decisions you will make as the owner of a privately held business is about the timing related to exiting or selling your business. Experts will tell you that you should start planning for your exit from the business the day you open your doors. Although that is logical, many are so busy running their businesses that developing plans to exit and becoming buyer ready are a luxury.

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Topics: selling a business, exit planning

Assumptions to Avoid When Selling a Business

Posted by Carl Doerksen on August 1, 2014 at 8:30 AM

A few weeks ago Inc.com published “The Five Myths about Selling a Business” full of interesting advice for business owners who are contemplating the sale of a company. The reality is there are some major assumptions – many of them erroneous – that business owners bring with them when they contemplate the sale of their companies. We know this because one of the major goals in our mergers and acquisitions seminars is to educate businesses owners and remove these false assumptions by giving them solid information and guidance, which will not only alleviate the five myths Inc.com talked about but also help them avoid the five most common mistakes made.

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Topics: thinking like a buyer, selling a business

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