Exit Planning

Selling your company? Don’t let others steal the value you’ve created.

Selling your business is an enormous and complex decision.

We help you to evaluate your strategic alternatives: selling now; transitioning to the next generation or to a management buy-out; or a middle path, taking some money off the table via a “leveraged recap.”

If the goal is to find a public company strategic buyer, or a Private Equity firm that wants to acquire “clean” companies as part of a roll-up strategy, then there may be several operational, financial, administrative, and legal items that will need to be attended to.

After your family, your business is the most important thing you have. It may even be an extension of your family. If you were ever to sell, you want to be sure you get every penny you deserve.

Unfortunately, the plain fact is that there are about 2,000 Private Equity (“PE”) firms that buy middle market companies for what seems like a fair valuation but on average 5 years later they sell them often for double the price. They are stealing the value. However, what the PE firms do is perfectly legal. The crime is letting them do it. Stanton Associates can work with you to do the things the PE firm would have done. And then you can sell the company. That is successful exit planning.

So, what needs to be done to drive valuation up?

Most businesses are valued in multiples of EBITDA. And better businesses – those with higher margins, reliable and predictable earnings, and a credible plan for the future – get higher multiples. A higher EBITDA together with a higher multiple, due to executing a successful growth strategy, will transform the value of your company.

Stanton Associates works with companies to build the supporting strategies and tactics to accelerate revenue and earnings. Applying our extensive expertise in sales and marketing, we ensure the two areas are working effectively and in alignment to achieve desired growth targets.

But it’s not just about growth—it’s profitable growth that counts. We identify where you have the greatest leverage to impact EBITDA. For example, are the efforts of your team appropriately focused on the most profitable customers, products, segments, channels, etc.? We would also help in many other critical areas, including: financial planning and forecasting, operational improvements, and putting in place performance management to drive results. Growing the top line 10% to 20% while improving gross margins by “only” a few percent will have a dramatic improvement on EBITDA and the value of your company.

Stanton Associates… a key part of your team

Lawyers, CPAs, investment bankers, and valuation experts – all are key advisors that you need when preparing for an exit.

Stanton Associates adds a critical dimension to your team, bringing a focus on maximizing the valuation of your company, and executing the plan to achieve that.

 

Our process and how we help

  1. Set Personal and Financial Objectives

How much do you want/need to get from the sale of your company? What is your ideal timing? Other non-financial objectives?

  1. Readiness Assessment

Is your business ready to be sold? We work with you to form a realistic assessment of your readiness: quality and depth of management; the quality of the financial records, your company’s ability to forecast accurately; the legal records; tax planning; personal wealth planning; and other factors.

  1. Estimate Company Valuation – current and potential

We can almost certainly give you a reasonable estimate of the valuation by working quickly and confidentially on a no-names basis with our investment banker connections.

We will give you a candid report of the potential for significant value creation in anticipation of a sale. If you decide to sell soon anyway, then we can move straight to step 5.

  1. Value Creation Plan

If you want to earn what is rightfully yours, then we will work with you to create a detailed value creation plan to drive a significant increase in value. And we can assist you to execute the plan successfully.

  1. Exit Plan

A detailed executable exit plan to include: cleaning up the financials and developing reliable forecasts; corporate clean-up and getting IP secured; tax strategies: corporate and personal; helping shore up key members of management; assemble team of advisors for the transaction; and more.

  1. Navigate the Selling Process

We guide you through what can be a complex process: manage implementation of the exit plan, coordinate with other advisors, assist with difficult decisions and many other things that are required to get you to a successful completion of the sale of your company.

 

We’ve got the experience to make a difference for you.

Members of the Stanton Associates team have been the CEO, CFO, COO, CMO and Head of Sales at many mid-market companies.

We know what it takes to drive value creation prior to an exit.

Stanton Associates is experienced working with founders or subsequent-generation owners and their team to unlock the company’s value.

We are passionate about what we do, and we work hard helping our clients to achieve successes they never thought possible.