GMO Buy a Business

Myth #4: I’ll Be Able To Sell When I’m Ready

A good Business Broker will spend hours educating business owners about what to expect at every phase of the selling process; a difficult job made harder by the fact that misinformation about selling a business comes from every direction — from preconceived notions held by business owners themselves, to suspect advice from well-meaning peers and advisors.

Following is a stubborn myth about selling your business:


Myth #4: I’ll be able to sell when I’m ready

This myth is perhaps the most disruptive on your selling list. It leaves behind a trail of missed opportunities, sometimes resulting in personal and financial frustration.

This myth is perpetuated by the notion that selling a business is like selling a house. You simply find someone to help you sell it when you’re ready, they find a buyer and you’re out.

The reality is that timing the sale of your business can involve much more than you deciding you’re ready. You also need to consider your business, your industry, the market, the economy and the lending environment:

•  Is your business ready to sell?  It may take months or even years of preparation to either make your business sellable, or make it sellable at a valuation you’re happy with.

• Is it a good time to sell in your industry?  If you own a business in the mining services industry you may be ready to sell today. Unfortunately, with the low point of the mining services cycle in WA still not quite reached, a sale for a high price in your industry in the first quarter of 2017 is a challenge right now. However the situation will soon start to improve as the cycle rolls forward – Timing is important.

•  Is the economic climate good for selling a business?

• Now is the right time to prepare for a future sale.

If your exit strategy is to sell your business one day then a number of pieces will need to be in place for that to happen. Don’t wait until you’re ready to get started. The future belongs to those who plan for it.


Reality: Successfully selling your business can take years of preparation, as well as the right timing for you, your business, your industry and the economy. It’s not like selling a house.


If you’re thinking about selling your business, let GMO help you get started today.

Graham O’Hehir
GMO Managing Director