When it comes to selling a business there are numerous stages, which can prove time consuming and can create an additional burden of stress on the selling party. This is the last thing a business owner will need whilst simultaneously trying to maintain an efficient and operational business. To help utilise your time and your solicitors, here are 4 ways you can help prepare yourself for sale.

Choosing your advisors

This is your foundation; a weak foundation can create problems in the long run so choosing your team is vital. A great deal of care should go into the selection of your team and also making sure your advisors have a complete understanding of not only your business but your objectives. Choosing the right advisors, who have the appropriate level of experience can minimise mistakes.

Conduct an internal review of business records and company administration

A crucial and highly important task is checking that your filing, corporate record keeping and general corporate compliance are up to date. This is because during the sale process your records will need to be ready for review in preparation for when the buyer’s conduct their due diligence. This will then help minimise delays.

Collating your business records ready for review

Try to anticipate what documents the proposed buyer will want to review. Put yourself in the buyer’s shoes, what would you want to review before purchasing a business? Typically, the buyer will want to review commercial contracts, company records, such as the corporate records, employee contracts, policies and handbook, property deeds, disputes and potential litigation, consents and compliance with regulations, any intellectual property and other relevant documentation that is relevant to the business. By preparing for the buyer’s due diligence review this can help utilise time and filter out any potential issues you may wish to rectify prior to disclosing company information.

Set yourself realistic expectations and timeframes

Business sales are complicated as each sale is unique and unexpected issues can occur throughout any stage in the transaction. Like all things preparation is key to success, but in a business sale the most advanced preparation can minimise many problems but not stop them from occurring entirely. A business sale can be overwhelming and an emotional experience. it is not unusual for emotions to fluctuate during a business sale, especially during the negotiation and closing of sale. So when this interacts with the intricate process of a sale unusual things can happen. Additionally, a business sale is a lengthy process. This is because there is a significant amount of research and review that needs to be conducted. Try to avoid setting yourself an unrealistic timeframe. Although this will vary based on the size of your business, a typical business transaction will take months. So stay patient and trust your advisors.