Mini exits and acquisition entrepreneurship will become a trend. The statistics are overwhelming. Both on the risk and opportunity side. Not many good books have been written on the subject. “Buy to sell” is the one I recommend.
You Don’t Know What You Don’t Know: Everything You Need to Know to Buy or Sell a Business
That is why I picked up “You Don’t Know What You Don’t Know: Everything You Need to Know to Buy or Sell a Business”. A convenient and quick guide into buying a business. Not as good as “Buy to sell”, and both miss the emotional side of selling and buying a business, creating what Eelco Smit calls a happy exit.
It is good business practice to think about your exit. Your numbers. That starts with good financial statements. Balance sheet, profit and loss accounts, cash flow, list of assets, list of equipment, all the hard stuff.
Soft balance sheet
I think the real value of a company sits in the soft balance sheet.
- The not-to-copy
- The investment in staff training
- The culture of your company
- The reputation of your company
- The key staff
- The explicit and tacit knowledge within the organisation
- The client list
- The innovation capability of your company
Did you build a business engine
Here is something to think about. Do you have to be there to run the day-to-day operations? If not, your company has an intrinsically higher value.
It will not surprise you that those things are not only important when you sell a company. They are always important. If you don’t have the numbers, the dashboard and the eye on the price (=happy exit), you are making your life more difficult than necessary, and you are probably not a good entrepreneur.