One of our Associate Directors will visit you and will conduct a Business Sale Consultation. It is in this meeting where the fundamental details of the sale project will be agreed. As part of our in-depth meeting we will discuss the diversity of your client base, the work which you undertake and also the level of contingent fees which you charge. This will assist us with understanding which buyers to approach on your behalf and in discussing the desired price/deal structure which you wish to achieve. This appraisal will be based on both the details of the business, and the current market climate for accountancy practices.
We recommend choosing a time to sell that would provide incentive to prospective purchasers. Try handing over control just before the most profitable time of year, to assist the buyer in hitting the ground running. You could also consider loaning your accounts receivable for a short time, to give your buyer more cash flow. By being generous, this could potentially equate to a better selling price.
In this process, you will need to provide a comprehensive list of documentation, including financial practice licences and regulatory certifications.
Gone are the days of spreadsheets and dated software as modern accountancy practices pride themselves on taking a modern approach. By adopting cloud accounting and practice management technology, and by training your staff to be proficient in this software, you make your business more appealing to a prospective purchaser.
Our market analysis has indicated that active buyers are looking for a minimum turnover threshold of £250,000 per annum and at least 2 partners or directors within the practice.
Clawback often depends on the size of the practice and is usually between a period of 18 months and 3 years subsequent to the actual sale of the practice. Should any clients not transfer to the new business you may not generally speaking receive payment for those clients. In some circumstances we have arranged for the buyers and sellers to have an arrangement in place whereby the retiring practitioner can replace lost clients with new ones and therefore mitigate the impact of lost clients. There has occasionally been limits placed on the amount of turnover lost before clawback operates, this is between 5% and 10%. It is however absolutely vital that you find a buyer that has a similar ethos of working in order to ensure your clients comfortably hand over at the time of completion and you stay around long enough to ensure the clients have settled.