Small business strategies to beat the January trading lull

In the wake of the spending sprees that accompany Christmas and New Year, January is often seen as a fairly fallow period for trading. If you’re a small business owner still factoring the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic into your bottom line, then this can be a worrying thought at the start of a new year.

Often, the remainder of winter is a case of just getting through the rest of the season until trading picks up again in the spr... Continue Reading

How to assess growth potential at a target business

There are a wide variety of reasons that you might want to acquire a business, whether you’re targeting a larger market share, a wider product range, or a boost to your profits. However, there is arguably one constant that buyers look for in a target business and that’s growth potential.

Before spending the money to buy a business and taking on all the associated risks that come with that, you'll want to know that the acquis... Continue Reading

Three ways to drive digital transformation at your small business

The world of business is rapidly digitising as new technologies advance every day. Digital transformation, therefore, is driving huge, quick growth for many companies across a range of industries and for a huge array of processes.

The phrase “digital transformation” itself may call to mind huge corporations, high-rise towers and a fleet of IT engineers, programmers and data analysts working round the clock on the company’s dig... Continue Reading

Getting your business ready for the Christmas season

With Christmas rapidly approaching, small businesses across the UK will be wondering how to make the most of the festive season and boost their sales over the holiday period. With commercial sentiment likely to be high this Christmas, following the debacle of last year, the key for businesses will be capitalising on this and ending the year on a high.

As well as boosting sales over the period itself, Christmas can be a great time to... Continue Reading

Retiring? Five tips for choosing your successor

If you’ve chosen to retire from your business, then there’s a chance that you don’t want to spend your remaining time at the helm engaged in a lengthy, complicated sale process. Often, retiring owners will instead look within the company at their senior team in order to find a successor.

If you promote a successor from within, then the likelihood is that the deal will be structured in such a way that you are paid out over a pe... Continue Reading

Divesting a division of your business

As your company grows, your mind might most naturally incline towards considering what assets you can acquire to generate further growth. One thing that might not immediately occur is the idea of divesting parts of your business.

However, whether it’s to strengthen your balance sheet amid a period of turbulent trading, or to enable you to refocus your business on its core offering, divesting a division of your company can pay as m... Continue Reading

Sell your business – Fast!

For business owners that have been considering a sale, widespread reports that an increase in Capital Gains Tax could be unveiled at an upcoming budget may have made securing a sale suddenly seem like a more urgent matter.

Despite the inherent tax advantages of locking in a sale before any potential change to CGT, the first thing to state is that it’s important to not rush into a sale and conduct the process in a manner that could... Continue Reading

Acquiring a business via a Management Buy-In

Compared to Management Buy-Outs (MBO), Management Buy-Ins (MBI) are a relatively uncommon form of takeover. While the process can pose significant challenges, in the right scenario an MBI can also make sense for all parties involved: the incoming management team; the outgoing owners; those financing the deal; and the company in question.

Here, we’ll outline what constitutes an MBI, some of the advantages, drawbacks and challenges ... Continue Reading

Tips for buying your first business

Buying your first business can be exciting and daunting in equal measure and, despite how prepared you might feel, the entire process is likely to be a learning curve. Making some mistakes along the way is natural and these are things that you’ll learn from and will stand you in good stead when making future acquisitions.

That said, you’ll want your first acquisition to be as successful as possible. A well-executed first acquisi... Continue Reading

Five things to ask a seller pre-acquisition

When buying a business, there are of course a huge number of things to take into account and to investigate during your discussions with the seller and in your due diligence.

Due diligence is vitally important and will be how you gauge the most crucial facts and figures regarding a business, but asking the right questions of the company’s outgoing owner can provide you with an invaluable insider’s perspective on the state of the... Continue Reading

Conducting due diligence on potential buyers

Generally, we perhaps tend to think of due diligence in the M&A process as being conducted on the buyer’s side, as they look into the business they are considering making a major investment in to ensure there are no hidden snags.

However, due diligence is also important from a seller’s perspective in order to help find the right buyer. Seller’s due diligence is not just crucial for a successful sale, it can also be vital to he... Continue Reading

Four simple steps to increase the value of your business

Pretty much all business owners, no matter the size of their firm, share one common aim: to grow their business and increase its value. Whether you’re the new owner of a business looking to future growth, or you’re planning to sell your current one, increasing its value is equally important to both aims.

Talk of increasing your business’ value may conjure up thoughts of wildly ambitious or complex growth strategies that take y... Continue Reading

Diversifying your small business

In times of upheaval like these, businesses that are looking to do more than merely survive will need to consider what they can do differently. How can they respond and adjust to meet the different needs of customers and clients?

Diversification will be crucial to many firms making it through the COVID-19 pandemic in good shape. But even outside the context of a crisis, diversifying your small business can be an excellent way to tap ... Continue Reading

Eight questions to ask a business owner before agreeing to buy

There are almost countless issues to consider before you make the final decision to purchase a business, but it's important to remember the role the seller can play in helping you make up your mind. While anyone who is selling a business will want to promote their company as best as they can, they can also act as a source of valuable information if you take the time to ask the right questions.

We have put together a list of eig... Continue Reading

Preparing a business sale well in advance

Business sales are complicated and time-consuming, so (if possible) one of the best ways to go about them is to plan well in advance. Of course, life as a business owner doesn’t always work out this way and unexpected bumps often appear in the road. But taking as much time as possible to prepare your business for a sale can be the best way to achieve the deal you want.

A quick sale may be tempting, but taking your time carefully c... Continue Reading