In recent years, the ready-made business market has intensified in Ukraine. Some entrepreneurs leave country, others want to change their occupation and are looking for different ways to sell their business. Businessmen who sell their businesses on their own usually look for a buyer among acquaintances or place an offer for sale on specialized online marketplaces.
The probability of finding someone who wants to buy out a business among acquaintances is not so high. Moreover, after its sale, you still have a certain degree of responsibility to your acquaintances regarding the profitability of the business.
As for online marketplaces, usually they help to sell small enterprises and this requires a deep dive into sales process.
An advertising campaign on the Internet on business brokers’ portals can set up progress in selling small and medium-sized businesses. But you should not use the services of web-sites that offer to place a free business advertisement, such portals are usually ineffective, they are not visited by the core audience.
If your business costs more than $ 100,000, then the number of potential buyers closes in, and selling becomes a more complicated process, which is better to leave for a professional business broker.
How do the best business brokers work?
First of all, a business sales agent analyzes the strengths and weaknesses of an enterprise, evaluates its liquidity and market value. A good broker will never take on the task of selling a suspicious or unverified business, because the most important asset of an intermediary is his reputation on the market. Offering and recommending a business for purchase, the broker applies his reputation.
After pre-sale preparation, a business broker works on promotion of the investment offer among the core audience. Now the search for investors for selling a business is conducted through the Internet, therefore, first of all, business brokers promote their portfolio of offers on the network using e-mail newsletters on investor databases, groups and pages of social networks and messengers, as well as posting offers for sale of enterprises on specialized investment portals. In some ways, the activity of a business broker is similar to the work of a realtor, many business agents also specialize in commercial real estate.
Experienced business brokers already have a well-established group of contacts of investors, and they find many buyers through personal connections. At the same time, brokers keep complete confidentiality, keeping the names of their customers secret, often full information about the company is not indicated in commercial offers posted on the Internet, so as not to attract too much attention to the company, so as not to harm the business. It is worth noting that you should not expect that the business will be sold in short term, because however good a business broker, but a lot depends on the property being sold. The average selling time for an enterprise is from three months to a year. But in any case, a deal involving a business broker will be concluded faster than engaging in the entire process of selling a business thyself.
Typically, business brokers work for a percentage (commission) of the sale of an object (usually from 10% to 2%, depending on the selling price of the business). Professional top-tier business brokers offer various packages of services to their clients depending on the goals of the client and peculiarities of the business.
How to choose a business broker?
First of all, analyze the main companies in the field of buying and selling business on the market. You should not cooperate with intermediaries who take absolutely all enterprises to work, because the most important thing in selling a business is an individual approach.
Find out how long the company has been operating on the market and whether it has been selling identical businesses, study the history of successful transactions concluded with the help of a company (track record).
A noteworthy detail is that a business broker, as a rule, has its own specialist field, therefore, if you are going to sell a farm, then you are unlikely to work with an agent who specializes in selling online stores or attracting investments in IT startups.
Try to find out how exactly the intermediary is going to organize the process of selling a business, what exclusive promotion channels will be used.
For example, in addition to traditional promotion channels, the InVenture business broker publishes investment offers on the largest investment portal, which is visited monthly by more than 100,000 visitors, including both large corporate investors and private investors. In addition, InVenture places the best offers for sale of business on its monthly investment digest, which has been publishing for more than 5 years, and send via e-mail to more than 13,700 subscribers.
You may need to choose between a ready-made business sales agency and a private business broker. On one hand, an individual will be able to devote more attention to your business and his/her services may be cheaper. On the other hand, a professional business broker has a great reputation, which investors consider and trust, has extensive tools and a systematic approach to cooperation with investors, professional staff, as well as legal expertise to support transactions.
How to avoid mistakes when choosing a business broker?
In order not to be deceived and accidentally not to use the services of fraudsters or non-professionals when choosing an intermediary, several rules should be followed.
- Check if the presumed intermediary is in the TOP-10 of Google’s results for such requests as: “sell business”, “buy business”, etc. If you don’t see your broker in the top ten of search results, then he/she is probably on the market as of late, or has weak Internet technology for selling a business.
- Study in detail the web-site of a business broker, how it is designed and what information is filled with.
- Ask a business sales agent to provide you with a history of their transactions.
- Look for reviews about business brokers, study their social network profiles, try to find out what kind of reputation your broker has on the market. For brokers, reputation is a fixed asset, so if he/she is known or there are suspicious rumors, then continue to search for another.
- If the intermediary asks for too low price for services or is ready to put hands to a task without considering offer, then this is also an alarming signal. Professionalism and an individual approach cost money.
It can be stated that cooperation with a business broker is the most effective and fastest way to sell your ready-made business. We recommend concluding an exclusive cooperation agreement with a business broker. So, the broker will become your full-fledged representative and member of the business sales team. Most of the offers on the open market have some problems and initially cause suspicion among investors. Therefore, investors tend to consider primarily exclusive and proven offers from professional market participants.
The main advantage of working with a business broker is your comfort. In addition to work related to preliminary preparation for the sale of a business and the search for an investor, an intermediary will provide mediation in the negotiation process and help to bring the deal to its logical conclusion.
A survey of the owners of Ukrainian companies that used intermediary services showed that 85% of customers were satisfied with working with business brokers even if the transaction did not take place.
InVenture is one of the professional players on the small and medium-sized business purchase and sale market in Ukraine, with over 50 successful transactions behind it, will help you to sell your business.