2019 Goal Fulfillment as an Entrepreneur

Jan 3, 2019

The calendar for Christmas & New Year’s in 2018 produced successive four-day weekends for many individuals.  This combined block of eight days in an eleven-day time period created opportunities to ski the new snow on our Pacific Northwest slopes, watch recently released movies, recharge personal batteries with quiet time, and in many cases perform an assessment of professional & personal lives while setting goals for 2019.   

A result annually of this holiday season reflection and goal setting are January telephone calls and emails to IBA by business owners thinking about selling their companies and people considering business acquisition as a method of fulfilling entrepreneurship dreams.  These inquires are welcomed at IBA. Our experienced, knowledgeable team of business sale intermediaries know that every transaction starts with conversations with a business owner and business buyer. We are happy to schedule a time to meet in person, serve as a resource about selling or buying a business, and answer questions.   

Common questions asked by entrepreneurs wishing to sell their privately held companies and family businesses are as follows:

1.  What is my business worth?  A majority of IBA clients are selling their businesses to facilitate retirement.  The anticipated value received for a company can dictate whether retirement is possible in 2019 or if deferring the sale further into the future is necessary.  We recognize & accept this reality. This does not change our desire to provide information. If a business owner wants to know what their business is worth, IBA will provide, on a complimentary basis, a professional opinion of the market value of the business.  We are often asked as a follow up question why we provide this assessment for free. The answer is that we desire to develop rapport with business owners early in the sale process and welcome the opportunity to demonstrate our knowledge, experience, and professional skill set as business sale intermediaries. All IBA business evaluations are done “in house”, all information provided is held in strict confidence, and traditionally the business sales facilitated by IBA are within 10% of the price we take a business to market and very close to the precision value we convey is the “market value” of the business in our business evaluation.  

2. How long will it take IBA to sell my business?  It traditionally takes IBA three to nine months to sell its client’s businesses.  Verification of this fact is the six-month term of our representation agreement, one of the shortest nationally in the business brokerage industry.   

3. Why is IBA able to sell businesses quicker than our competition?  The short answer is industry leading knowledge, experience, and ability.  The longer answer is we know the market value of businesses, where to find potential buyers, how to successfully negotiate/facilitate business sale transactions employing “best practices”, and are 100% in alignment with our clients financially since we are only paid on performance at completion of a transaction.  IBA collects no administrative fees or retainers from sell side clients. Nothing motivates a sales professional like being paid 100% on commission.

4. Will my employees, customers, and suppliers learn I am selling my business before the sale is completed?  If a business owner trusts IBA’s systems for maintaining confidentiality during the sale process developed over the past 44 years, the probability of the sale becoming public knowledge before the transaction being announced or completed by the parties is very low.

5. Does IBA represent businesses in my industry?   IBA offers the most comprehensive, industry specific, business brokerage representation services in the Pacific Northwest.  The industries represented by experienced, knowledgeable professionals on IBA’s brokerage team can be found on the following page of our website: https://ibainc.com/industries-served/

It is always in the best interest of a business owner to engage a professional intermediary with knowledge of a specific industry and the market conditions impacting the business sales in the industry.

6. Does IBA represent companies in my area?  IBA provides the most comprehensive business sale representation services in the Pacific Northwest.   We have successfully sold businesses from Bellingham, Washington to Ashland, Oregon and from Aberdeen to Spokane. We have business brokers on our team who will represent businesses in every city in the Pacific Northwest. 

7. Can IBA help me build my transaction team?  IBA professionals welcome the opportunity to introduce our clients to the “best of the best” in the legal, accounting, and wealth management professions.  IBA is a collaborative company and encourages its clients to obtain the necessary counsel to mitigate post transaction liability, achieve the best possible tax outcome post sale, and smoothly transition a business asset to a passive asset that can be more easily managed and distributed to heirs.  The best transactions are completed in “full sunlight” with appropriate assessment of risk and appropriate counsel.

Common questions asked by entrepreneurs interested in buying a business are as follows:

1. How do I review businesses represented for sale by IBA?  IBA maintains a buyer database program. Business buyers who complete the necessary documentation, maintain confidentiality, and employ “best practices” related to business acquisition will be provided the first opportunity to review new companies represented by IBA for sale.  20 – 25% of businesses represented for sale by IBA are sold to participants in our buyer database program annually.

2. Does IBA represent business buyers?  As a general rule, IBA is a seller representation business brokerage firm.

3. Should I talk with multiple business brokerage firms as a buyer?  IBA encourages business buyers to review businesses offered for sale by all business brokerage firms.  It is only through reviewing multiple opportunities can a buyer determine which business is a good fit for them as an acquisition and which business brokerage firms they are comfortable doing business with as a buyer. 

4. Can IBA help me source funds for an acquisition?  IBA is happy to provide introductions to quality, business banking professionals for a buyer attempting to source funding for a business acquisition.  IBA only works with the “best of the best” in the banking community.

It is a big decision to sell a privately held company or family business and retire.  It is an equally big decision to leave the security & compensation of the corporate world to buy a business.  IBA has served as a trusted guide to parties selling businesses in the Pacific Northwest since 1975. We have successfully facilitated over 4000 transactions in the last 44 years.  If 2019 is the year you have decided a new chapter should be written in your life with an entrepreneurial theme, we would welcome the opportunity to talk with you about your goals. IBA professionals can be reached Monday – Friday from 8:00 A.M. – 5:00 P.M. at (425) 454-3052 or info@ibainc.com.  Evening & weekend meetings are available by appointment.

IBA, the Pacific Northwest’s premier business brokerage firm since 1975, is available as an information resource to the media, business brokerage, and mergers & acquisitions community on subjects relevant to the purchase & sale of privately held companies and family owned businesses.  IBA is recognized as one of the best business brokerage firms in the nation based on its long track record of successfully negotiating “win-win” business sale transactions in environments of full disclosure employing “best practices”.