Jamie Waller has been there and done it, when he joined the Business Growth Programme in 2010, his business was turning over £4m and losing £400k per year. In 2016, Jamie sold that business for over £40m!
Since then, Jamie has set-up and sold another business, he now runs an investment fund called Firestarters, in his words, the aim of the fund is to "make other businesses successful, hugely successful!".
We asked Jamie what his 3 top tips would be for anyone that is selling a business and this is what he had to say:
Number 1: Engage with advisors
The amount of businesses I come across that don’t want to engage with advisors to help them sell because of the costs associated with it. You have to engage with advisors and you have to engage really early. I started my engagement 2 years before I sold, and at least 6 months before I appointed the advisors, I met with lots of them, I took lots of references on who was best to work with.
Number 2: Dress the business for sale
This can’t be done in a part-time capacity, I employed someone in to the business as a consultant to say ‘look, this is your responsibility, to get this business ready for sale’, because there’s always things day-to-day that you're not doing well enough or you don’t have documented and contracts that remain unsigned, you need to get all of that resolved before you start to put together your documentation and ask someone to put a value on the business.
Number 3: Have a number in mind (and just don't move from it!)
Realise that there is a value in what you do. I had a number in mind and during the last stages of negotiations, we had two bidders and I was willing to walk away right up until the last minute and I absolutely ensured that they paid me an additional million pound because that was my number. And people really don’t mind, it’s not really about if it’s twenty, twenty-one, twenty-three or twenty-four million, if you find the right buyer and they love your business and you’ve it put in a good order ready for a transaction, they’ll buy it anyway.
The Business Growth Programme (BGP) has been working with businesses that are planning for succession for over 30 years. Whether it is family succession, a newly appointed CEO or maybe preparing the business for sale, we have been able to assist with the development of a robust business growth plan. Find out more.
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