Owning a business can be lonely. But there are many others out there like you. If you’re considering selling your business, you should know the most common reasons. Some are good. Some are bad. Understanding your motivation can help you make a wise decision.
The decision to sell your business can be emotionally difficult. Your business is your most valuable asset, into which you have poured much of yourself. It’s important, therefore, to avoid navigating the sales process alone—no matter why you’re selling. Here are some of the most common motivations.
Exhausted and Done With it All
Aside from retirement, this is the most common reason owners sell. Burnout can negatively affect everything about your life, and can cause you to make unwise sales and business decisions. Some of the most common things sellers feel when they sell due to exhaustion include:
Business is full of surprises. Unexpected events can feel unmanageable, and can build into a snowball that triggers an avalanche. Business owners who are comfortable with daily operations may not be able to tolerate the disruption to their routine. This can cause them to overlook the big picture and choose a sale. Some common sources of this stressful decision include:
Each of these factors can scare off potential investors, since they may lower the business’s eventual valuation.
Many owners set a personal timeline for the sale of their business, planning to sell in 5, 10, or 15 years. There’s nothing more comforting than things going according to plan—as long as you choose to sell during a favorable time in the market, and at a time when your business is trending upward.
Strong Market and Increasing Competition
When the economy is strong and valuations are increasing, business owners have a powerful incentive to sell. Owners who aren’t ready to innovate in response to industry changes may also sell their business when the market looks favorable. Pride and stubbornness can be barriers to getting the highest possible price and the best sale terms, particularly when owners over value their business.
A well-run business in a competitive industry may be approached about a sale. Most business owners open the door when opportunity knocks. But don’t rush into a sale just because it seems like a good idea. All opportunities warrant informed advice, even when an excellent offer comes your way. Seek advice from a professional sell-side expert, and don’t let your emotions take your eye off of the prize.
About Carpenter Hawke
Carpenter Hawke was founded in 1991 to provide expert M&A advisory services to sellers of privately owned businesses. Carpenter Hawke has successfully advised a wide range of clients looking for unconflicted advice on the sale of their business. Personal integrity and professionalism govern our performance.
Our experience and knowledge of the appropriate steps enable Carpenter Hawke to provide strategy and plan formulation to suit the needs of each sell side client. New England based but we work, Locally and Globally!