Selling a company

Selling a company

Selling your business is one of the most important events in your life. But where do you start and what is involved? Are you going to do it yourself and are you saving costs with this or are you engaging a specialist to take care of the entire process? Below you will find all important information that is needed when selling your company.

Selling our company yourself

There is a lot you can do yourself when selling your business (possibly with the help of your accountant). For example, you can search for potential candidates yourself. This saves costs and ensures that you are in control. You as an entrepreneur know your company best and can determine which buyer might be suitable and which is not.

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Engage an advisor

You can also choose to hand over the entire takeover process. A takeover advisor can provide guidance from A to Z. Even if you have started selling yourself, it is advisable to contact a company takeover specialist at some point in the process. You decide which moment that is. For example, a takeover advisor can carry out a valuation or assist you in the negotiations with potential buyers.

Find your appropriate specialist

What kind of buyer are you looking for?

Different types of buyers can be distinguished. These types can be divided into internal parties and external parties. Internal parties include buyers who come from their own network, such as:

  • Family succession: the company is transferred within the own family.
  • Management Buyout (MBO): with an MBO, the company is sold in whole or in part to its own employee or manager.
  • If no follow-up is available internally, an external party will have to be searched.
There are several options for selling your company to third parties:
  • Management Buy-In (MBI): With an MBI, the company is (partially) sold to an individual party from outside the company. This can be a starting or experienced entrepreneur.
  • Strategic takeover: In a strategic takeover, the company is sold to another company, for example a competitor or a company that is looking to broaden the market.
  • Investor: (part of) the company is sold to an investor in order to generate extra capital. An investor can also become involved in business operations by contributing specific knowledge.

Transaction types for company sales

If your company is a one-man business or firm, the sale is an asset-liability transaction. With a (private) limited company you can choose from two options:

  1. Assets-liabilities transaction: this way the loose assets (assets) and possibly the debts (liabilities) are transferred to the buyer. In the case of a private limited company, the company itself is not sold, but only (some of) the assets and liabilities. After the sale, the purchase price (plus any non-transferred assets and / or liabilities) remains in the company, the shares of which are still in the hands of the selling entrepreneur.
  2. Share transaction: in a share transaction, the limited company remains the owner of the assets and liabilities. In this case, the buyer becomes the new owner of the limited company. This means the sale is a lot easier. The shares are valued, paid and transferred and all company aspects are included in the sale of the shares.

The value of your company

One of the most important questions when selling your company is: What is the value of my company? The company value provides a good starting position for the asking price that you can handle and indicates the final purchase price that you receive after sale.

A company valuation is usually carried out when the sale of the company is involved. The outcome of the company valuation is an important link in the future personal financial picture. In many cases, the proceeds from the sale are the entrepreneur's pension. By having a valuation of your company on time, you know whether any sales will produce the desired result. When this is not the case, a valuation report provides insights into the main factors that influence the value of your company. Based on the valuation report, you can still start optimizing these factors, which increases the business value.

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