Mcmurry & Swift, a leading Washington State Business Broker serving Puget Sound and western Washington

Here is Why Sellers Should Choose McMurry Swift

To ensure that the entire process is handled properly, you'll want to deal with a professional. When you choose to list your business with us, McMurry & Swift, Inc. will be there to assist in every step of the way. Here's what you can expect:

Evaluation: The first step is an objective evaluation of the business, its strengths, weaknesses and market value. In order to accomplish an accurate evaluation, our associates need three years' Federal Tax Returns, year-to-date Profit & Loss Statement / Income Statement, an equipment list, and copies of any existing leases (building and/or equipment). These are required so that prospective buyers will see a true picture of the profitability and cash flow. A thorough business evaluation includes scrutinizing the financial statements to establish the actual available cash flow by eliminating excessive owner compensation, perks, nonessential and nonrecurring expenses and owner's debt service. Assets, both tangible and intangible, must be assessed and restated to reflect true current values. The evaluation will also analyze other factors such as competition, market position, customer base, employees and potential for improvement. The price and terms of sale can then be developed using all of the data contained in the evaluation. This initial appraisal service is free of charge, and will give you a much better idea of the value of your company.

Exclusive Representation: The second step of the selling process begins once the market price, terms, and structure have been agreed upon between you and McMurry & Swift, Inc. An exclusive written Memorandum Listing is prepared for your signature specifically stating the price and terms of our agreement. The agreement usually is for a six-month period but occasionally could be as long as one year depending upon circumstances and the projected financial outlook of the business. We now have legally been ‘hired’ to represent your business. A bound professional presentation package is prepared and then made available only to qualified buyer-candidates after they sign a confidentiality agreement to not disclose any information about the business other than to their own professional advisors. This presentation package will contain most of the elements required for a qualified buyer and/or his advisors to determine if the business meets their basic acquisition criteria. Besides description, price, terms and structure it will contain a cash flow analysis reflecting what a prospective buyer could reasonably expect for a return on both their time and cash investment before depreciation and Federal Income Taxes (EBITDA). Also included will be an equipment list, copies of pertinent leases, pictures and brochures, if available and any crucial and on-going contracts or agreements. With this information most financial advisors and/or bankers can provide a prospective buyer with an indication of financing.

Buyer Search: Confidentiality is vital in searching for buyers. "Do-it-yourself" sellers cannot look for buyers without revealing their identity; and this can do potentially serious harm to an established business. With McMurry & Swift, we require a signed Confidentiality Agreement (CA) before any specific information is divulged on the business. Through our confidential network, we can provide optimum access to buyers while still protecting your business.

Marketing: McMurry & Swift, Inc. markets listed businesses through a number of different mediums including professional industry websites specifically devoted to business sales. Also, we prepare a bound “presentation package” for buyers; local and regional newspapers (which will include the Wall Street Journal, when appropriate); Internet advertising including our website's "Current Listings" database; and affiliations with several national professional organizations that includes accessing their databases.

Introducing the Business Properly: Introducing a prospective purchaser to your business requires specific expertise. We initially inquire of the buyer his/her background and ability to purchase in general and have individual sign a confidential agreement. We "package" the information you have provided to assist in your business' presentation. The buyer must gain a "feel" for the business by viewing your operation firsthand and discussing its many facets. We work hard to answer the buyer's questions and troubleshoot concerns as they arise.

Negotiations: Once a buyer signals an intent to purchase, the most critical step in the selling process begins. Most proposed business sales never close because of stalemates in negotiations. Even those deals which do close will have faltered seriously, on average, three times during the negotiating process. Our professionals can greatly enhance the probabilities of your business being sold because of our experience and understanding of mediation, deal structuring and issue resolution processes.

Closing and Follow-Up: Following the execution of the Purchase and Sale Agreement, we will open escrow with an independent Escrow Attorney. We will assure that the due diligence process is handled correctly and that documents needed for closing are completed. We will also be available to answer all your questions during this process, as well as being present at the time of closing at the escrow attorney’s office. We want your experience to be positive and as trouble-free as possible.

Through our affiliation with M&A Source, we meet with over 50 private equity –buyer groups twice yearly to reacquaint ourselves with their acquisition criteria. Many times they are willing to pay the brokerage or “finders fee” for our services if we provide them with a suitable acquisition candidate in which they eventually purchase. As a prospective seller with a sizable business you may want to know more!

In short, the vital ingredient we offer is experience. McMurry & Swift's sales team has been thoroughly trained in each and every aspect of the business sale process; it takes a skilled professional to do the job correctly. We're professional specialists.

Have more questions? Please contact us. We can answer your questions and, if desired, assist you in the sale of your company. All inquiries are strictly confidential. We look forward to speaking with you soon.

Things to know about selling a business | Business types MSI has sold

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