Selling your company.

No matter how driven and successful you are, no matter how little you care about your retirement age, one day you have to say goodbye and sell or transfer your company. Or maybe you just want to stop earlier. Or one day you realize that running a company on a day-to-day basis is not a good fit for you anymore. Our advice is to start much earlier thinking about and preparing of your future exit.

Who will be my successor? Can the business remain in the family? How can I sell my shares and how do I find the right buyer? Should I sell all my shares at once? What is the value of my shares? What will be my financial situation after the exit? Far-reaching questions that you should actually prepare for already at the start of your company. Orient yourself in good time by participating in our inpiration session 'sell your company'; in just one half-day, insight into the ins and outs of selling your company! Or call us for for more information and your personal guidance from a dedicated duo of our experienced M&A advisors.

Your own Venture helps you and your co-shareholders find answers to your questions. As a reliable partner, we manage the entire process of selling your company. So that you can continue to concentrate on the daily business. At the right moments you will be involved to brainstorms with us about the sale of your company, to provide and receive company and progress information and to make crucial decisions.

Taking the decision to sell your company.

Selling your company dealComing to the decision to sell your company is often quite complicated. Even if you are the sole shareholder, selling your life's work is a drastic choice, both commercially and emotionally. Often, you can't share your thoughts and questions within your company. Therefore, make sure you arrange a few good trusted sparring partners to help you. Also involve your family in the selection process on time.

If there are several shareholders, a timely and thorough preparation of your wish to sell is necessary. It is crucial in this regard whether your co-shareholders also want to sell or not. Make sure you carefully study the company's articles of association and the shareholders' agreement. Is there a blocking arrangement that prevents you from simply selling your shares? What rights do your co-shareholders have when you want to sell? Have agreements been made about the selling price of the shares in case you want to sell and/or leave the company? Get advice at this stage and make sure you know exactly what rights and obligations you have; before making any decisions and making choices.

Selling your company is a complicated process.

Selling a company is often a lengthy and complicated process. You will be confronted with the challenge to find the right candidate buyers, extensive information exchange, impactful negotiations and complicated contracts. And in what order should the steps be taken? Mind you, on average it will take a year before the signature is put at the notary and the sale of your company is finalized.

Thanks to our years of experience and successful deals, we can tell you everything about how to sell your business and what it involves. We know the possibilities of shaping business- and creative deals and we know what the risks are in the various stages of the sales process. In our opinion, an expert advisor and sparring partner is indispensable when selling your company. It involves a lot of money and big interests. Not only your own interests, but also those of co-shareholders, family, employees, customers and suppliers. A sober and neutral view helps you make the right choices during the process. For a free orientation, schedule an appointment with us and press the button below. Or read further on this page for more information about the sales process.

Some of our transactions.

  • supervising sale from A to Z

    Selling a company was unknown territory for the entrepreneur; once in a life time. Your own Venture takes the woman step by step through the process. Organizes, coordinates, negotiates and involves the right parties. With attention to the person behind the company, the emotions and (financial) interests.

  • Scenarios to sell the company

    The shareholders want to sell their software company but have no idea how this works and what the possibilities are. Your own Venture has provided shareholders with insights into the type of buyers, alternative ways of selling and determining factors for the valuation. Based on the choices of the shareholders, they are guided by Your own Venture in the sale process and close the deal of a lifetime.

  • Necessary sale of the company

    The two owners both have different ambitions in the short term; a major obstacle to selling their business. Thanks to targeted intervention by Your own Venture and finding the right buyer, six months later a good agreement has been reached for all parties.

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Selling your company

Sell your company in six steps.

Selling your business is a complex and often unpredictable process. With many stakeholders, time pressure, emotions, large amounts of documents and sharp negotiations. Your own Venture takes control of the process, produces key documents, supports the negotiations and advises on the strategy and tactics to be followed. Selling your company takes the following steps:

1. Determine sales strategy -> Sales plan

'Think before you act' is certainly important when selling your company. What type of buyer is desired: an investor, strategic buyer or perhaps a management buy-in? Which part of the company do you want to sell: 100% of the shares, a part of your shares, or only certain assets? What role do you still want to play after selling the company and for how long? Are the interests of you and your co-shareholders parallel or not? These and many more issues are discussed in dept. The choices are recorded in a sales plan.

2. Describe business strategy -> Information memorandum

In the information memorandum we describe in an appealing way what the positioning and strategy of your company is, how the organization is structured, who the key officials are, which competitors there are, etc. The (normalized) financial performance of the company is presented and future growth forecasts are shown. The information memorandum should make potential buyers enthusiastic about the company while providing enough information to base an initial offer on the company.

3. Search candidate buyers -> Longlist and Shortlist

After an agreement on the sales plan and the information memorandum, Your own Venture starts drawing up a long list of potential buyers based on the agreed sales strategy. Often through a mix of personally approaching specific parties and expanding an 'advertisement' and distributing an anonymous teaser. We discuss the longlist with each other in order to arrive at a shortlist of parties.

4. Request non-binding offers -> Letter of intent

The shortlisted parties will be asked if they would like to make a non-binding offer for the company. We often ask a number of additional questions, such as the way in which they want to finance the acquisition, what conditions they set for the seller, etc. Now the selling entrepreneur is also personally involved in order to get to know the potential buyers more closely and to participate in the negotiations. Ultimately, a letter of intent is concluded with one party, including a binding offer (subject to due diligence).

5. Due diligence by buyer -> Final agreement

Now there is a busy phase for the seller coming up in which the buyer needs a lot of information to conduct a thorough due diligence. The seller looks at, among other things: business risks, contracts, personnel and accounting. The company is instinctively turned inside out. Negotiations often follow on the findings from the due diligence and the impact on the previously agreed price. Also, guarantees and indemnities are often demanded by the buyer; a topic that generates the necessary conversations.

6. Drafting contracts -> Signing at notary

Parallel to the due diligence, a start is made on drawing up the final contracts: the purchase action and, depending on the type of transaction, also matters such as new articles of association, a shareholders agreement, the management agreement, a credit agreement, etc. Only when there is complete agreement on the entirety of the contracts, these can pass at the notary. The notary ensures that the payments are made on the day of signing. Champagne!

Selling your company determining the value and price.

What is my company worth? It may be one of the first questions you ask yourself when you start thinking about selling your company. At the same time, this is a difficult question to answer at this stage. Usually price paid for a company consists of more than the value of the assets as they appear on the balance sheet. Buyers are often willing to pay an amount of so-called goodwill. Goodwill is the intangible added value of the company in view of the profit potential in the future. Some examples of things that increase the added value of a company: strong brand name, good staff, location of the company, multi-year customer contracts, recurring turnover, large market share, etc.

Some commonly used methods to determine the value of a company are: the multiples method in which the value of the company is based on prices of comparable companies, the discounted cash flow method in which the forecasts of future cash flows are discounted to a net present value and finally and the asset-based method in which the assets and liabilities on the balance sheet are used as the basis for the valuation. Make sure you get expert advice about the value of your company. It is a complex matter with many variants, which requires specific consideration of the characteristics of your company. Once the company value is clear, the shareholder value can be determined. In addition to the company value, the seller often also negotiates the right to have the surplus cash still present in the company paid out at the time of sale.

Selling your company: tips and advice.

Finally, never underestimate the importance of finding the right buyer and conducting good negotiations. What is goodwill for one buyer may not be goodwill for another buyer. For instance, the location of your companybuilding can be an excellent fit for that one buyer who wants to expand to exactly that region. So take a good look at the interests of each potential buyer. Dare to respond to this in the negotiations; it can give you tens of percentages in the yield of your shares.

Sell your company? Do your exit planning now.

Place your cards face up on the table and make the right decisions together with Your own Venture. So that your dream does not fall apart when you say goodbye to your company! Do you want to sell your business the right way? Arrange an appointment with us via the button below or call +31 85 060 6070

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