In this series of lessons learned, we address key learnings in the areas of how timing is critical, people, finance, legal and customers to provide a sense of how to prepare and what to expect if you are considering selling your company.
Welcome to our Mergers & Acquisitions: Lessons Learned series.
Lesson #1: Timing is critical
You need to be able to strike while the iron is hot. If an opportunity presents itself, you must be ready to execute. That means getting – and keeping! – your house in order over the entire course of the sales process.
Many operational issues can hold up or even halt a sale. We’ll delve into specifics in the upcoming lessons, but for now, the key to avoiding stalling out is to ensure that your company is in the best possible condition before going to market – the better the package, the better the offer.
Sales Take Time
The second essential element of timing is that it’s impossible to predict how long a sale will take. One of our clients completed a deal in forty-five fever-pitched days…while another took over three years. We advise our clients to get ready and stay ready. Sometimes it’s a sprint. Sometimes it’s a marathon.
Selling at The Right Moment
Finally, it is vital to sell at the right moment. Some people hang on too long and end up losing out – what we call “riding it over the top.” The value of your company is determined by the market—every offer requires careful evaluation of the pros of continuing to operate and grow the business and its potential value vs. the risk of walking away from a sure thing.
No one knows the future, but experienced advisors can provide valuable insight into the best moment to reap the most out of what you’ve sown.