The process of selling your business
Steps in selling a company
The process of selling a business consists of roughly 7 steps. The final objective is to sell your business for the best price. This objective is achieved by proper execution of the following stages;
Engagement letter and process planning
The process of selling a business starts here. Firstly, we equip ourselves with your company’s vision and philosophy. We will try to understand your company to the last detail which will help us in selecting the most suitable buyers. Once we have taken the time to discuss your plans, we will present you with a detailed proposal and sign the engagement letter.
The executive summary and deal book
We will start preparing an anonymous ‘executive summary’ which gives the prospective buyer an anonymous view of your company. At the same time, we will prepare a detailed company profile (‘deal book’) including all relevant details regarding your company. In the first instance, interested companies will receive the executive summary. If further interest is made known, the prospective buyer company will receive the detailed ‘deal book’ after signing a non-disclosure agreement.
Finding suitable buyers for your company
In this step, we continue analyzing which companies in the marketplace are most suitable for acquiring your company. We use our European-wide subscribed databases, our network, and other available resources. We grade acquirers based upon the value-added to your company.
After your approval of the long list of targets, we will contact them. We mainly sell them the advantages of your organization to help them picture very clearly what they can achieve by acquiring your company. During the talks and meetings, we will thoroughly test the interest and financial capabilities of the companies we talk to. The result will be a short list of targets whom we will invite to visit your company.
The valuation and negotiation process
In the M&A process, we will establish a value for your company on the basis of various methods. At the same time, we will learn about other items (e.g. staff retention) that are important to you. During our talks, we aim to understand in detail what the valuation methods of your prospective acquirers are and what absolute value they will add to your company. Visit business valuations for detailed information about this subject. If you have plans to sell your company the page on how to increase the value of my company can help you to get a better price.
The letter of intent (LOI) or term sheet
Once we have found the most suitable company to buy your business, we start preparing a term sheet or LOI. The process of selling a business is almost complete. Within the process of selling a company, more legal documents are involved. For an overview visit legal documents in a business sale and download some examples to get familiar with the procedure.
Due diligence is done by the acquiring company or by external accountants and or due diligence experts working on behalf of the acquirer. We can assist in the due diligence process to ensure all required documents (the due diligence checklist) are prepared on time, so the process can run smoothly. Due diligence is executed in financial, legal, and other business areas. For more information, see due diligence or read vendor due diligence for the seller of a company to become more familiar with this topic.
In the final phase, the contract will be drawn up by an external legal party. Normally, it is the responsibility of the acquiring company to do this. Corporate Finance in Europe (CFIE) can manage this process from the seller’s side if desired. We work together closely with the seller’s legal counsel to ensure the contract is appropriate for the sellers.
European M&A process
We provide our services in all European countries. Due to our team’s native skills, the following countries have our special attention: the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, France, the United Kingdom, Spain, Portugal, Italy, Austria, and Switzerland. CFIE is highly qualified to help out with M&A advice, consultancy, valuation, taxes, and legal matters. Visit M&A advisers to select the adviser who speaks your language.
Information about the process of selling a company
Contact us for a free-of-charge brainstorming session, with feedback on your plans, and allow us to give you more information about the process of selling a company.
Perhaps you have decided to sell your company. For now, you have some insights into the process of the sale of your company. Visit who helps you sell your company about options for advisers. Another suggestion is to visit the costs of selling a company for an overview of the financial implications of a business sale.