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Buying or selling a business: When strategy becomes critical

14 Aug 2018

Buying or selling a business is a major milestone in any entrepreneur or business owner’s career. With a wide range of complexities to navigate, even “serial” entrepreneurs and seasoned M&A veterans struggle to make the process of buying or selling work for them.

Management is not the same as strategic leadership

When it comes to striking the right deal, small and medium-sized businesses face a particular set of challenges. Whereas corporate acquirers can ringfence time and resources for business strategy, SME leaders often struggle to carve out thinking time away from their managerial responsibilities.

A typical UK SME owner dedicates just 12 hours each week to developing their company, while one in five finds less than an hour for growth projects. 

To neglect the strategic side of buying or selling a business is to compromise the success of the whole process, and a key reason why so many deals fail to deliver the expected level of value.

Careful planning is essential – it involves looking beyond the financials and understanding the finer details that make a deal tick. From intelligent marketing, to post-merger strategy and integrating people, cultures and business processes.

Avoid failure to launch with the right approach

Thinking through all of these variables and having the right strategy in place can be the difference between a successful transaction and one that fails to get off the ground.

Take the owners of IT and Telecommunications network support services provider, IntraLAN, whose initial attempts to sell their business returned a low offer and poor terms. With the right strategic support, the owners were able to choose from five firm offers, with the deal closing at a high value in just three months.

With the right approach and preparation, the benefits of strategic M&A are there to be seen. It's why more than 64% of participants in the 2018 IoD/Avondale survey would actively consider an acquisition as a route to growth. 

A chance to hone your M&A strategy on 27 September 2018

Join us on 27 September 2018 for Avondale’s Strategically Selling or Acquiring a Business conference.

This unique event, held in partnership with Avondale, promises fresh insight into selling or acquiring a business. It is aimed at time-strapped SME owners and leaders looking for strategic support, advice and ideas as they prepare for this critical stage of their career.

Key speakers include Kevin Uphill, a leading international authority on M&A and business transformation strategy. As Avondale’s Founder and Chairman, Kevin has overseen the sale and purchase of more than 300 companies.

Joining him on stage will be Eric Keane, former owner of IntraLAN Group. An experienced and highly successful entrepreneur, Eric has built and sold on three companies over the past 20 years. He will be sharing his insights into the benefits and the pitfalls of selling a business.  

With many more dynamic speakers besides and like-minded business leaders in attendance, the conference will provide strategies to achieve maximum value from your next venture. You’ll also hear about alternative routes to acquiring or selling a business – exploring options such as external fundraising, growth equity and employee ownership.

​Book now

Avondale, the IoD’s preferred partner of business sales, acquisitions and strategic services, provides IoD members with the expert services to ensure you are fully prepared to reap maximum benefit. 

020 7129 8297

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