The Information Memorandum (also known as IM or a Sales Memorandum, Business Summary, Business Review, Prospectus etc) is a powerful document that persuades the buyers to take the next steps.
Without this document, you will face many tyre-kickers, waste your marketing dollars and likely to get a lower offer, if you get an offer at all.
But if the Information Memorandum is done incorrectly, it will have the opposite effect.
How do you create an awesome impression of your business in the minds of the buyers... before YOU even meet the buyers?
We are not talking about hypnotism or voodoo, but there is a tool that we use to "pre-frame" the buyers.
There are many legal considerations to think about when you create a contract to sell businesses and it is important that you take the time with each step to ensure that it is done correctly.
Your priority is to ensure that your contract to sell a business represents exactly what was agreed upon between you and your buyer.
As the baby boomer generation reaches retirement age and ponder retirement plans, most of the 800,000 businesses owned by baby boomers in Australia are likely to be, at some point for sale, if not already.
This situation won't improve in the near future. Baby boomers should have a back-up plans, if they can't exit.
Are there too many businesses for sale in Australia?
There are 5.5 million baby boomers born between 1956 and 1965 in Australia, and we are witnessing a wave of approximately 800,000 baby boomer business owners retiring and selling their businesses.
A plethora of supply will inevitably push prices down. Are we headed for a crash of prices?
At first meetings, sellers have every right to ask questions of the buyers and they should.
Many business owners forget to screen buyers with proper questions. As a seller, you ought to qualify the buyer to avoid serious problems later on and wasting your time.
Before a business broker can help you to put up your business for sale, you will be asked to sign an Agency Agreement that gives formal permission for the agency to sell your business in exchange for some form of remuneration.
You need to know what you are signing up for.
Do buyers really pay the commission paid to business brokers vis-a-vis the inflated prices that the seller has factored into the asking price?
In Australia, the commission payable on a settlement of the sale is usually invoiced to the seller, but are buyers covertly paying for this?
Meeting a prospective buyer for the first time could be unsettling, especially if you fear to answer 'invasive' questions posed by the buyer, or having a complete stranger prod into your business.
An offer and the acceptance of the offer is a most exhilarating feeling. As the seller, you can almost smell the finish line.
But offers can be an anti-climax if it doesn't eventuate into a sale. The game is afoot, but the sale is still far from being in the bag. The sale process now becomes critically important to avoid losing the buyer.
The mistake of allowing buyers to prematurely inspect your business revolves around the failure to recognise this simple fact - your business is not sold until the money is in the bank and you have the money.
You might just pay the price if you get too sentimental with the choice of a business lawyer. Or if you go for the cheapest lawyer.
You need a skilled business lawyer to get you to the finish line, but you risk sinking the entire deal by choosing a bad lawyer.
Many smaller businesses have little idea what they must do to prepare their businesses for sale. But preparation is critical and must be done properly to maximize the probability of a successful sale.
Too many businesses for sale are not properly prepared and they ultimately pay the price.
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