Selling a business

If you’re looking at retiring and closing up shop, there’s a pretty good chance you can sell your business instead.

When you’re selling a business, there are some really simple things you can do to get the best bang for your buck. Getting your business ready years in advance is best, of course, but hindsight is 20/20 and you might not have the luxury of time.

One thing to keep in mind is that selling a business can sometimes be very time consuming, so make sure you keep this in mind before you decide to sell. If you’re using a good broker, this is less of an issue. But you’re still likely to get a lot of questions

Most of the advice below is for selling a small business. For a rundown on what we recommend for a larger sale, check out our M&A section.

Get an appraisal before you sell

If your business is large enough to use a broker, talk to a broker. Not all brokers are created equal, and we can definitely refer you to a good one if you’re unsure of who to talk to.

If you don’t want to, or you’re told that your business is too small, we could give you a high level value opinion that you can pitch it at on Trademe.

Be honest and open about what you’re selling

Don’t try to hide things – it will either come out in the due diligence process, or you’ll scare buyers away.

Laying out all the important information in black and white saves a lot of time and helps the negotiation run smoother.

That said, make sure you don’t give away trade secrets or other confidential information until the appropriate time. This is a difficult balance, so get in touch with us if you’re unsure.

Be available to help post-sale

If your business couldn’t run without you before, it’s probably not going to anytime soon. Be prepared to keep working in the business, maybe part time, while you hand it over to the new buyer.

Next steps

We see a lot of businesses being bought and sold, and we’ve bought and sold a number of our own. We’re happy to have a chat with you on a complimentary basis to work out whether you need help, and what that might look like.

Get in touch by filling out the form below, or feel free to contact our team directly.

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Joshna Mistry

Partner and Value Added
Services Lead.
Read Joshna’s profile.

Humphrey Hart

Senior Analyst and
Entrepreneur.
Read Humphrey’s profile.

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Richard Ashby (our tax specialist) provides advice, comments and updates on what’s been happening in the world of tax each week.