Selling and succession

Is it time to sell your business?

2 min read

If you have a good reason to sell, and are well prepared, this could be an ideal time to sell your business. We have more buyers than sellers in the market at present, and the New Zealand economy is heading in a very positive direction. Shelley May of ABC Business Sales Ltd has put together some of the most important questions you should be asking yourself if you’re seriously considering selling your business. Do I really want to sell? The answer shouldn’t include a ‘maybe’, or a ‘might’. You have to be motivated and committed. The process requires the same level of drive and focus you’ve applied to building your business up until now.

Why am I selling?

When you have a good reason to sell, you’ll be more focused and more likely to get a sale. You may be keen to retire or you may have a change in health, business relationship or personal affairs, or you may simply want to realise a capital gain on your investment and hard work.

Am I willing to use the help of an expert?

It’s well worth considering because when you think about it, you’ll probably only sell a business once or twice in your lifetime, but our business brokers do it every day. They’ve been there, done that and know all the “ins and outs” of what can be a rather complicated process and can act as your guide with expert advice.

Am I willing to meet the market price?

This is important no matter what you’re selling. When it’s your business, something you’ve built up over time, your idea of its worth can be quite different to what the market thinks. That’s why it’s vital to do your research and get good advice. If you’re realistic with your asking price, you’ll sell much more quickly.

Do I have accurate and up-to-date records?

Anyone wanting to buy your business will want to look at your financial statements, your lease documents and any other important paperwork, just as a car buyer looks at the service history of a car. So be prepared and have everything ready leading up to when your business goes on the market. You’ll look far more professional and speed up the selling process.

Do I have realistic time expectations?

Don’t expect a sale overnight. It may take time to identify the right buyer, to negotiate the best deal and to satisfy any conditions of sale. Be patient and don’t appear desperate or over anxious.

Have I picked the right time to sell?

The best time to sell your business is just before its peak. Your business will look far more attractive to a buyer while it’s still showing signs of growth. What’s also important is to give yourself lots of time to get it ready for sale. So as soon as you start thinking about selling up, start planning for it. Shelley May is a business broker at ABC Business Sales, which has been connecting business people to opportunities since 1986.

For more information about their services visit or give Shelley a call, 021 286 3274.