Delivering a successful ‘exit’ for your clients
The ultimate goal of all Business Owners should be to build equity value in their business and when the time comes, to exit successfully.
However, 90% of businesses end up being wound up and not even marketed for sale. Of those that are put on the market, 80% fail to sell, and of those that do sell, less than 5% achieve their target valuation*.
Source: Business Optics Research 2010 – 2019
All too often the timing of an owner’s exit is not under their control, approximately about 50% are forced to exit early due to illness, divorce, shareholder disputes or family crisis. If the business is not ‘Exit Ready’ the outcome will be potentially disastrous, and given the fact that for many owners, their business is their pension this is an damning inditement on the support they receive and on the advice and guidance they receive.
Preparing for exit is not a quick process, it takes up to a year to sort out the reporting after which the business will ideally build up at least 3 years of robust Management Reports, that’s 4 years, and if you add to that the fact it can take up to 12 months to complete the sale process, owners should start planning at least 5 years before they plan to exit.
The good news is that preparing a business for exit is not hard, but it takes time and planning. As your clients most trusted advisor and ideally their first point of contact for matters such as business valuation and exit you are ideally placed to make a real difference to your client’s live post work AND better still, this work is extremely well remunerated with the potential to earn more in fee income than any other activity.
This package includes:
Optional Training and CPD
Given the financial training and expertise you and your team have already acquired, combined with the VFD Mastery Training, helping clients correctly interpret and act on the information contained in their Management Reports will very quickly become second nature.
Recommended Training Modules: Compliance+, Management Reporting, Forecasting + Virtual FD / CFO, Exit Planning & Support
You can be up and running in less than a day and everything comes with a 90 day, 100% satisfaction or your money back guarantee, how could it be any easier.
There are some ‘bread and butter’ financial services that are inextricably part of the exit preparation and business sale process, establishing a Business Valuation and preparing a Financial Due Diligence Pack, and these are typically high value, but this really is the tip of the iceberg.
If your client does not come to you for help well before they are ready to exit, in all probably already too late for you to help them to protect and realise the full potential value from the business they have slaved to build over the years. Why? In most cases because no-one took the time, or went to the effort to help them understand what it takes to become Exit Ready.
Whilst most of the Financial Management for Business Owners training, (FiMBO), focusses on how to build and scale a business, sessions 10, 11 and 12 all focus on the need to plan for exit:
- Session 10 highlights the need to be clear on how much money owners need to realise on exit to fund their life post work without compromise and without the risk of every running out of money.
- Session 11 details the time scale, steps and activities necessary to make a business Exit Ready and in particular focusses on the need to create ‘transferable value’ and reduce ‘owner dependence’.
- Session 12 goes into detail on how to plan for the future, not just sales, profit and cash flow, but how it is critical to know how the business will be valued and how to regularly review current and projected valuations.
For many business owners this is enough to help them ‘see the light’ and to engage your services to help them prepare and become exit ready, either one to one, or in Exit Planning Mastermind Groups. For those who need to know more the 12 week / 12 module ‘Exit Planning 101’ training programme is another train the trainer exercise. Designed for Accountants to train and educate clients, it is the optimum way to upskill and empower your team to help clients understand and appreciate the value you and your team can provide to help them prepare in good time for their exit.
When is the best time to prepare a business for exit? Right now, and why is it right now? Because being exit ready is simply good business practice and as your clients only ‘Financial Partner’ and their most trusted advisor if you do not make it your business to educate and support them in this process, they are likely to end up being yet another failure statistic when it comes to exiting their business.
The VFD Pro tool kit provides everything you need to help you, your team and your clients master the process of exit planning with the combination of education in the form of the FiMBO training with its introduction, and the more detailed Exit Planning 101 workshop series, plus the key tools and support that is covered in the 4th part of the VFD Mastery training which includes the following topics:
- The role and the rewards of Exit Planning and Becoming Exit Ready for owners and advisors
- Establishing a Blended Business Valuation Using 7 Valuation Models and related assumptions
- Preparing a comprehensive Financial Due Diligence Pack for buyers and/or sellers
- Building Your Clients Exit Forecast (P&L, BS, Cash Flow, & Rolling Valuation – Years 1 to 5)
- Reporting Business Value vs Target Exit Value as part of the Monthly Management Cycle.
- Preparing the Owner and The Business for Exit – The Special Advisory Services (SAS) Team
- Establishing the Value of your Exit Planning and Support Services
- Pricing – Proposals – Setting Expectations – Resource Considerations
As an Accountant you and your team have one asset no other advisor or profession possesses, you understand finance and you are comfortable with numbers which means you are the only party your client can logically come to for help when it comes to establishing the right valuation for their business. The unique VFD Pro Business Valuation Model cuts the time taken to create a robust, objective Business Valuation from days or weeks to hours.
One of the greatest frustrations faced by buyers and sellers when it comes to the actual exit process is obtaining the financial information buyers need to conduct Due Diligence. Provided the bookkeeping is accurate and up to date, which it has to be to generate reliable Management Reports, the VFD Pro Financial Due Diligence Report completely automates the process of assembling all the information a buyer / seller needs, again, reducing the time taken from over a week in most cases, to no time at all, (but it still needs your expertise to help clients understand the information it contains).
The Business Valuation Model and the Financial Due Diligence Reports alone are potentially worth tens of thousands, but this is a drop in the ocean compared to the potential fees that are earned helping businesses prepare for and then execute their exit. The unique Target Valuation Forecast Model and the ability to report Performance vs Target Valuation / Plan is both easy to use (for a qualified Accountant), it is invaluable to clients and in turn, makes your services indispensable.
When your practice offers everything from the Future Focussed Compliance+ service to add value to all clients and start to focus attention on the need to understand and plan for exit, Management Reporting and Financial Review Meetings as clients grow, moving to part-time / Virtual Finance Director / CFO services and the ultimate, Exit Planning and Support services, you really are offering the Start-up to Exit financial support service every business owner will inevitably need as they make their journey