There was a recent story in the News & Observer entitled “When a business owner wants out” detailing the exit plan of the current owner of Great Outdoor Provision Co. The current owner, Tom Valone, is fortunate to have created and thought through an exit strategy for the business which he created.
Like many business owners, Mr. Valone has owned his current business for a number of years and has increased its value significantly. Thankfully, Mr. Valone thought through a number of options as to how to find a buyer for his business which will increase the likelihood of his retirement and the success of the purchase by the buyers. Many times, family owned businesses struggle with how to develop a succession plan. The owner’s children may not want to work in or own the family business thereby creating a challenge as to how to transfer the business to a buyer with the ability to purchase the company and run it efficiently. In Mr. Valone’s case, he approached his management team with the idea of them buying the company which they agreed to do.
As you can imagine, creating a plan to sell the business, putting the details in place, finding a buyer and actually closing on the transaction can take some time. Many times, our clients who desire to sell their business find that it takes considerable time to implement the plan. In Mr. Valone’s case, he “expects his physical exit to take about three years and his financial exit to take about ten”. As many business owners learn while in business, perseverance is key to many aspects of running a successful business.
There are generally options available to owners who want to sell. One of the greatest keys to developing and implementing a successful business transition plan is to prepare, prepare, prepare! Planning ahead, looking at the options available, talking with your accountant, banker and attorney can often times make all the difference.
Congratulations to Mr. Valone, his management team and Great Outdoor Provision Co. Hopefully, the business will be around for many years to come!