CEO Advisor Newsletter June 2017
Making Your Company More Valuable and Attractive to Buyers
Valuations have fully recovered and are extremely high again, and M&A activity is strong. Today, one of the limiting factors of deals getting done are over zealous CEOs and business owners that demand extremely high prices for companies that were not sellable less than a decade ago. Another limiting factor is that your business is simply too small to attract a buyer (under $10 million in revenue) which means you need to gain help in accelerating your growth.
Whether you decide to sell your company in today's hot market, or prefer to hold and grow your business further (and risk another drop in the market), there are certain key areas that you need to focus on to build value and make your business more attractive to current and future buyers.
A strategy to make your business irresistible to prospective acquirers may generate the greatest return in your life time. After all, I tell our clients on a regular basis, you never know when the perfect buyer will knock on your door.
Below are key factors that you must employ in your business to build value, make your company sellable and attractive to current and future buyers.
The growth rate of your business is critical to the value of your business and the attractiveness of an acquirer. Small to mid-size businesses that grow at 10% or 20% per year are not attractive to buyers given the many other options they have to acquire faster growing businesses. If your growth rate is slow or stagnant, there are issues that you need to address in your business if you expect to exit at some point in the future. This key factor applies to all types of businesses all the time.
Companies that are dedicating people and resources (their M&A team) to acquiring other companies tend to focus on larger companies. It takes just as much (actually more) time to acquire a small company than it does to acquire a mid-size or large company.
Acquirers are looking for revenue and profits that will move the needle of their business. They want strong management, large markets served for future growth, and revenue that is substantial and predictable. Kick into growth mode to increase sales, profits, the value of your business, and to generate your golden opportunity to sell.
If you are only as good as your last project, you are in trouble today. Acquirers see value in recurring, contracted revenue. Not just loyal customers that buy semi-regularly, but a strategy and business model with long-term, contracted customers that is forecastable and predictable. Not all customers need to be this sure bet, but you need to have a business that has staying power to attract buyers and have them pay you handsomely for the customers you have secured and for your many years of hard work.
Gross Profit and Gross Margins
Your Gross Profit Margin (GPM), or Sales less Cost of Goods Sold divided by Sales, is the number one factor that points to the profitability of providing your product or service (before overhead/expenses). Acquirers are attracted to businesses with high GPM as this will typically result in high Net Profit, Net Profit Margin and Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortization (EBITDA).
Depending on your type of business (manufacturing vs. service vs. software have very different Gross Profit Margins), you need to have a GPM that is at or higher than other companies in your industry to optimize your value. If your Gross Margins are low, seek advice from a business advisor as you are leaving a lot of profits on the table, as well as, penalizing your business value substantially.
Strong management is always a key factor in running and growing a sustainable business that is attractive to buyers. Interim management (business advisors, CPAs, attorneys, etc.) work well for smaller companies until they reach a certain size where a full permanent management team can be hired. If you are the lone senior executive in your company or your management team is lacking a full realm of expertise, you need to gain additional assistance or help to enable growth and build value in your business.
CEO Advisor, Inc. has decades of expertise in hands-on advising of small and mid-size business, including building value, growth capital and buying/selling companies. Contact Mark Hartsell, MBA, President today for a no cost consultation by calling (949) 629-2520 or emailing MHartsell@CEOAdvisor.com.
CEO Advisor, Inc. Advises MediaMix365 on Growth and Growth Capital
Located at Hutton Center in Santa Ana, CA, MediaMix365 is a full service technology-driven lead generation and customer acquisition company serving multiple consumer verticals, including solar energy, home energy upgrades, home improvement, home security, and other consumer related vertical markets.
As a pioneer in "Conversational Commerce," MediaMix365 provides proprietary, multi-channel marketing capabilities utilizing text, email, social media and telephone technology solutions to drive lead generation and customer acquisition for its clients. Nick Long, CEO of MediaMix365 states, "CEO Advisor and Mark Hartsell have been invaluable in preparing and advising us for funding for our next phase of growth."
As trusted business advisors since 2004, CEO Advisor, Inc. provides a hands-on, methodical, disciplined approach to working directly with CEOs, presidents and business owners of small and mid-market companies. We advise CEOs by focusing on growth, business strategy, planning, business processes, sales strategy, marketing, operations, finance, growth capital and mergers and acquisitions advisory services to grow their businesses to the next level.
Mark Hartsell, President of CEO Advisor, Inc. states, "MediaMix365 has an incredible business model and plans for expansion with tremendous growth potential. By focusing on growth, strategy and growth capital, MediaMix365 will substantially grow its business to another level. We are very excited about playing a key role in further growing their business, while building shareholder value for the future."
About Media Mix 365, LLCMediaMix365 provides technology-enabled lead generation and customer acquisition services across multiple expanding consumer vertical markets. The company further leverages its capabilities and sales by marketing prospect leads through lead marketplaces including its own LeadXchange365. As a pioneer in "Conversational Commerce", MediaMix365 is revered as an expert in its field nationwide. For more information, contact Media Mix 365, LLC at (800) 259-8618 or visit www.MediaMix365.com.
About CEO Advisor, Inc.CEO Advisor provides business consulting, growth capital and mergers and acquisition advisory services affordably and effectively to meet the specific needs of small to mid-size companies in a wide range of industries, including software, technology, media, professional service firms, healthcare, manufacturing and many more. CEO Advisor's mission is to advise CEOs, presidents, business owners and principal executives with the needed expertise and focus, coupled with hands-on advice and work performed to grow your business to the next level or realize your life's dream through a successful exit. Contact Mark Hartsell, MBA, President of CEO Advisor, Inc. for a no cost initial consultation at (949) 629-2520, by email at MHartsell@CEOAdvisor.com or visit us at www.CEOAdvisor.com for more information.
Note: This article does not represent an offer of securities of any kind.