Many business owners operate their businesses with a view to selling it prior to retirement. Not many give enough thought as to how saleable their business is before they reach the decision to sell, which often means that they realise far less for their business than they expect, or sometimes cannot even sell it at all. In the same way as you would clean a car before selling it, it is important to present your business in the best possible light. Issues that would concern a buyer and affect the sale price include:
- Is the Business’ IP adequately protected?
- Does the Business have adequate customer and supply contracts?
- Are the Business’ premises under an onerous lease (particularly in respect of dilapidations)?
- Do the Business’ premises have adequate security of tenure?
- Are key employees adequately tied-in or incentivised?
- Does the Business have any history of claims from clients or employees?
- Does the Business have any environmental exposure from premises it occupies now, or in the past?
- Are the Business’ employment contracts adequate (e.g. do they deal with ownership of IP created on company time?);
- Have the Business’ pensions obligations been complied with?
We can assist you in giving your legal agreements (or lack of) an “MOT” to determine whether there are any areas you should spruce up before putting your business through a sale process.