Columbia Student Startups: Here’s 6 Steps to Getting Acquired

[Disclaimer: This is an uncensored and unedited article submitted by a student at Columbia University. We have experienced recent cases of students publishing articles on Nexus that contain subtle advertisements, spam and offensive content. In those cases, we removed the articles promptly thanks to reports from our blog readers. If you believe this article contains any subtle advertisements, spam or offensive content, please report it immediately for us to review. Thank you.]

 

Are you about to sell off your business? A business magnate will always have more resources to boost your business and scale it to new heights. But such a buyer won’t come to you automatically, even if your business is one of a kind in the market. You have prepare a lot to put your best face forward, which will immediately attract great buyers.

Here’s 6 steps to selling a small business successfully and fast.

Start preparations for sale in advance

This is the first golden rule to follow when you are about to sell your startup. You have to start with the preparations a minimum 24 months in advance. Follow a smart pre-sale to-do list to make things systematic and effective. First, note down the specific areas of your venture that call for necessary enhancements. Check whether any of your equipment needs a re-work. There are so many things to size up, prepare and correct before you put your business on sale. These include leasing paperwork, tax returns, licenses, employee issues, legal problems (if any), financial records and more.

The best thing is to take the help of a lawyer and accountant/financial advisor to ensure there is no dispute on your legal or financial records. Your buyer will check everything before acquiring your startup and any hint of dispute won’t be taken lightly.

Right business valuation is important

After you are done with all preparations, it’s time to get a valuation report of your business to know its actual worth. One of the worst mistakes seen while selling a venture is bloated ideas of the business’ worth. Such inflated conceptions will lead to unrealistic selling prices, pushing away serious buyers from your field. Thus, experts always suggest getting an extensive business valuation before you put your startup for sale. A professional valuation will present the actual worth of your business so that you can pull in buyers with a reasonable and fair deal.

You must get in touch with a professional seasoned business appraiser for a precise valuation of the business. Your appraiser will extend an elaborate appraisal report to you, which will help to set the right listing price.

Prepare your sale memorandum

Top guns looking to buy a business come with a series of questions to assess a startup’s worth in their own way. Thus, must make sure to draft a solid sale memorandum, which will provide elaborate answers for any important questions a buyer might have. Just be careful to get them to sign a non-disclosure agreement to avoid the risks of information leaks.

A sale memorandum usually spans over a lengthy 10-20 page presentation that offers a reasonable overview of your whole business. The document should stress your strengths to elevate your bar before the buyers. It also features the limitations of the business to ensure a neutral overview to the buyer. But make sure your weakpoints do not overpower the best attributes.

Start a marketing campaign

The next step is to market the business to spread the word to potential buyers. Showcase your company in business publications and magazines. Go for an internet marketing campaign and launch the news on social media. Also, request your professional peers to spread the news around.

Register with an online FSBO

Online FSBO portals are your best partner while selling a business on your own. The most reliable ones are ready to help out SME owners with everything needed to sell a business efficiently. From comprehensive tools to legal templates to how-to-guides to resources – these platforms will help you with everything. You will even receive assistance on marketing the business. Moreover, these platforms connect you to local business advisors who will teach you the best tips to sell the business with success.

Screen buyers

When your business starts receiving interest from buyers, extend a brief overview of your startup. But never reveal any elaborate data about your company, its financial records or other major details. Make a list of potential buyers & meet them in person to discuss the possibilities. You have to make sure your chosen buyer is able to afford your selling price. So, don’t hesitate to ask the buyer for evidence of his financial affordability.

Final words

Be flexible for a rational negotiation. After everything has finalized, forward the bill of sale straight to the buyer and close the deal with good wishes.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *