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3 Ways to Pretty-Up Your $10M Business for M&A

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If you wanted to sell your home for top dollar, you’d probably trim up the front yard and paint the walls. You’d patch the hole in the wall and fix the leak under the bathroom sink.

You’d try to see your home through the eyes of a potential buyer. You’d wonder what enhancements would appeal to them.

Forget the paint.

What if your buyer knew the house would appreciate because the neighborhood was becoming highly-desirable?

Or simply adding a closet could convert a 3-bedroom into a 4?

Now we’re talking a premium price.

So, what are 3 things a seller can do to make their business attractive in the M&A market?

1.    Improve cash flow. 

In the M&A world, all roads lead to EBITDA.

EBITDA is a true measure of a company’s profitability and what drives purchase price. It’s both revenue and expense-driven.

Managing a business to EBITDA means increasing sales while simultaneously reducing operating expenses.


Consider selling into new markets, consolidating facilities to improve the cost of goods sold or adjusting salaries to incorporate a variable component that rises and falls with the business. Track EBITDA numbers regularly and demonstrate annual improvement.

2.    Create multiple avenues of growth. 

Any smart buyer wants a business with upside.

A compelling growth story is key to attracting an M&A buyer. Are there ripe, untapped markets that require a moderate marketing investment? Could revenues skyrocket with new locations?

Counting on past successes to predict the future is weak. Doing the same thing over and over is unattractive.

Stimulate a credible growth story by piloting new programs. Introduce fresh products and experiment with sales channels. Do market research to scope the pool of potential customers.

3.    Systematize. 

Ever felt single-threaded with an employee that has tremendous tribal knowledge but won’t share it? Or tried to reconcile company data across multiple, unconnected systems and applications?

In M&A, manual, disjointed processes are out. Streamlined, highly repeatable systems are in.

Swap the one-off contracts with frictionless templates. Eliminate tribal knowledge by insisting on manual creation and training. Consolidate data and embrace technology.

The result?

A smooth handoff to a future buyer for scaled growth.

If you or someone you know needs a little business TLC:

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