If you are a niche publisher contemplating expansion or sale, there are plenty of questions to make you crazy and keep you awake at night……..
- Buying or merging: Now what? How do I ensure this stays a good investment? How do I sell this as a good thing to the current team? Do I make changes and how soon?
- Selling the biz: Is my business prepared for sale? What’s it really worth? What are my risks? Are there prospective buyers I should target?
And those questions are just for starters. But don’t have let yourself descend into M&A madness!
You need to have all the best information out there to make sound decisions about your company’s future.
Before any big decision, getting all the facts and expert insights is key. We consulted CEO Dan Oswald, who has tons of experience in the wide world of M&A. Below he shares his insights on valuation, preparation and determining the right deal structure.
How are businesses valued? What can publishers expect?
Dan: “There are many approaches to valuing a business and every buyer will take a slightly different approach based on their own situation, approaches, and preferences. There are many things that bring value, including organic growth, recurring revenue, diversity of revenue sources, tech-enabled products, and profit margins. Being able to highlight the key value drivers in your business will be a critical component in achieving a successful outcome.”
Where should niche publishers start when preparing their business for sale?
Dan: “There are two things every seller must do when preparing their business for sale:
- Keep running your business. Preparing for and managing a sales process is a huge distraction. Don’t take your eye off the ball. You must continue to invest in and build your business. Always assume that a sale isn’t going to happen—until it does. That means acting as if you’re going to own and run the business indefinitely.
- Surround yourself with good advisors. You’ve invested a big part of your life in building your business and it’s likely a significant portion of your net worth. Don’t make the mistake of thinking you can “go it alone” when it comes to the sale of your business. Get proven experts to assist you in the process. Good advisors don’t come for free, but they’re worth every penny.”
Mergers, acquisitions, management buyouts–what are some good ways for publishers to determine the right structure for their media company?
Dan: “Every situation is different and those differences will help determine the right structure for the sale of a media company. For a founder looking to monetize his investment and exit the business, it’s likely an outright acquisition is best to help achieve those goals. For an owner who would like to stay involved in the business and benefit from the synergies created by bringing two companies together, a merger or an acquisition with an earn out and continuing role might work well.
If the company has a strong management team that would like to continue with the business there are ways a cooperative owner can help his team achieve their desired goal while still realizing an outcome that meets his or her objectives. Every situation is different and every seller has his or her own goals. Identifying those goals upfront before undertaking a sale process will help determine the right structure.”
So start your 2018 off right. Our publishing experts can help you transform your media business and accelerate your revenues.
More about Dan: Dan Oswald is CEO of Simplify Compliance/BLR, a diversified training and information company that offers innovative solutions, authoritative content, and practical, easy-to-use software tools to meet regulatory compliance obligations and adopt best practices in financial services, human capital management, telecommunications, and healthcare markets. At Simplify Compliance, Dan has orchestrated a number of mergers and acquisitions that have propelled the company’s growth and entrance into new markets.
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