November 16, 2019  
 
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Selling a Company

 

Selling an Accounting Firm

A lot can go wrong during the sale of an accounting firm these days. More than ever before, it's important for sellers to know the tactics and techniques that are being used to maximize sales price and achieve desired sale outcomes.

It's a fact: Successful business sales take time.
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Despite the conventional wisdom, we believe current economic conditions are right for selling an accounting firm. Here's how to do it . . .

The Case for Confidentiality

Highly publicized accounting firm sales are risky accounting firmsales. A low-key selling strategy is a low risk activity because you can control who does (and doesn't) know that your business is on the market. But if word leaks out to the wrong people, your competitors can use that information to steal business and damage your credibility. Maintaining confidentiality isn't easy, but without it you won't get top dollar for your business. In a worse case scenario, a profitable accounting firm can be reduced to one that is struggling to survive. Brokers and consultants can mitigate the risk by implementing confidential sale techniques.

How to Work with Business Brokers

Brokerage is a mainstay of the business-for-sale marketplace. It's typical for accounting firm to rely on brokers to reduce market time and increase the final sales price. However, your broker will still expect you to materially participate in the sale of your business. Successfully brokered sales are based on solid relationships between brokers and sellers as well as the strict execution of a common selling strategy.

Average Timeframes

Hoping for a quick accounting firm sale? You may be disappointed. Unfortunately, there are no hard and fast rules about the length of time your business will be on the market. Pricing plays a role in sale length, but there are no guarantees that a fairly priced business will sell quickly. To adequately prepare your business listing, plan on spending six months to a year prior to listing. Even though it's conceivable that an attractive opportunity could sell in weeks, an immediate flood of offers could indicate that the business is underpriced.

More Info on Business Transitions and Related Articles

We think you may find these additional resources to be of interest.

Selling Part of a Business

Marketing an Accounting Firm

Selling to Competitors


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