Selling a business but did you think about it when you started up?

The simple answer in many cases is probably no. But that does not mean that you should not if you are starting up now. Steal a march on others by consulting Lawdit. At the end of the day please remember that running a business is not to everyone’s tastes. Long hours, loneliness, stress, bankers, something might get you down, and like a Hollywood couple, you want to plan your exit strategy.

A well thought-out exit strategy can help you maximise the return you get from your business. It should also help you successfully market your business to potential buyers or investors and ensure you end your involvement with as little disruption to the business as possible.

Whether you are forced to run for the exit for unexpected reasons or you serenely bow-out backwards following a planned schedule the decisions made at the outset can affect how easy it is for you to eventually exit the business.

Your aims with an exit strategy are to mould your business into the ideal shape for your chosen exit option and thereby maximise the value you get from it, and make it the most attractive at the same time. You may want to groom successors if they’re coming from within the business, are family members or part of your management team.

A good rule of thumb in life and equally applicable, where possible, to business would be to always exit at a time of your choosing. In the business context this may be when the business is doing well and the market conditions are advantageous. Jump, don’t get pushed. This will aid your marketing of the sale if nothing else.

An exit strategy in your start-up business plan can then be reviewed and revised whenever you work on your annual business plan/budget. This will allow you to steer your business towards your planned exit.

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