What information do you need to value a business for sale?

There are many different methods of valuing a business. Some investors use discounted cash flow, others use a multiple of earnings, some look at appraised assets. If you are in the same business as the business for sale that you are looking to acquire, what synergies exist between the two companies?

The amount of savings that can be generated needs to be factored into the purchase price. If you are looking to acquire a competitor who keeps low balling the prices, if you were to acquire them, that gets rid of a competitor which will result in higher prices, you need to factor that into the amount that you will offer for the business for sale.

Here is a list of items which you should have when doing your valuation

  • three years financial statements prepared by an external accountant. If the accountant has a designation, ie. CA, CGA, CPA, the accountant may have issued an opinion, a Notice to Reader, Review Engagement or Audit. Please read the opinion to determine how much reliance on the financial statements, if any, that you should make.
  • internal financial statements from the last year end up to current normalize income for the last three years. Normalized income starts with the net income reported for tax purposes and removes all personal and non reoccuring expenses which would not exist under the new owner.

How is your business affected when your spouse wants a divorce?

You have been operating your business for many years and you have been having marriage problems for years. One day your spouse wants finality to the relationship and wants a divorce. How do you cope? Do you have lines of credit that still can be drawn? Is the spouse working for you. I spoke to a person the other day and they split up 4 years ago, live in the same house on two floors and still worked in the business.

No arrangement was made for closure because neither wanted to pay for a lawyer. It is difficult for a married couple to split up however there are two ways to do it, the friendly way or the non friendly way.

When you are using divorce lawyers and are fighting, the only person who wins are the lawyers. The two spouses and their family loses. I saw one spouse who was very vindictive cause the husband to lose 50% of his net worth due to fighting. The kids see the fighting and no one wins.