Business Succession

Ready to hear a reality check from other business owners?

  • Nearly three-fourths of privately held manufacturing firms in the U.S. were formed between 1960 and 1980.
  • Only about 14% have a succession plan in place for their company if they should die or become disabled.
  • Half of all business owners expect to sell their businesses to an outside buyer when the time is right.
  • At any given time, 20% of privately owned businesses are for sale and only one in four will actually be sold.

Here's what is important about these stats*. When we ask business owners when they see a major transition in the ownership of their businesses, most of them reply, "Five years." Suppose they don't start the plan today, then next year it will still be five years out and the year after that another five. Meanwhile the statistics imply that with every passing year the market for business sales will become more and more crowded.

* John H. Brown - Cash Out Move On: Get Top Dollar, and More, Selling Your Business

Every successful exit strategy requires tough questions and careful advance preparation.

  • What's the value of my business today? Is that what I think it's worth or what the marketplace would think?
  • How can I preserve the value through more effective financial and operational management?
  • How can I protect it from creditors?
  • How can I promote its value through value drivers?
  • How can I prepare for acquisition - either cash or note or other option? For a merger? For an IPO?
  • How can I manage contingencies - loss of shareholders, key people, financial resources, intellectual assets, customers?
  • How will I manage the new family asset my business becomes?

We have walked many business owners through these concerns to start the planning process and monitored progress as the plan progresses. For virtually all of them, the business represented the largest single asset in their estate which then led to integration of business and estate planning. No surprise - the commitment to planning your exit from the business mirrors your commitment to building it.

Office Location

DavisWalker, Ltd.

9100 Arboretum Parkway
Suite 260
North Chesterfield, VA 23236-3493
ph: 804.560.8082

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News Updates

Financial and Economic Brief - March 20, 2018

• Rate Hike Strategy - Jerome Powell, chairman of the Federal Reserve, heads toward his first interest rate increase this week.

• Retail Companies against Tariffs - The Trump administration is preparing tariffs against Chinese information technology, telecommunications & consumer products to force changes in Beijing’s intellectual property & investment practices.

• L’Oreal Purchases ModiFace - L'Oreal has purchased ModiFace, a Canadian firm that specializes in artificial intelligence and augmented reality technology.

Financial and Economic Brief - March 13, 2018

• Jobs Grow in February - According to ADP and Moody’s Analytics, companies added 235,000 jobs in the month of February.”

• Change to China’s Constitution - On Sunday China's parliament amended the constitution to remove the limit on the number of terms the president can serve.

• Dropbox Inc. IPO - Dropbox Inc. filed for an initial public offering of 36 million shares, giving the company a value of more than $7 billion at the high end of the pricing range.

Financial and Economic Brief - March 6, 2018

• Trump’s Tariffs - According to Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, President Donald Trump's tariffs are “no big deal.”

• Stocks Continue to Drop - The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell for the fifth straight day as concerns about a global trade war following the President’s threat to impose tariffs kept investors concerned.

• AXA to Acquire XL Group - French insurance company AXA has reached a deal to acquire XL Group for approximately $15.3 billion.

Financial and Economic Brief - February 27, 2018

• U.S. New Home Sales Drop - According to the Commerce Department, new home sales dropped 7.8% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 593,000 units last month, the lowest level since August 2017.

• Global Stocks Higher - Global stocks went higher this morning, as investors bet the new head of the U.S. Federal Reserve, Jerome Powell, will keep a steady course on policy when he addresses lawmakers this week.

• Stabilizing Oil Prices - OPEC is working on a plan for an alliance with ten “petrostates”, including Russia, aimed at “propping up” oil prices for the foreseeable future.

Financial and Economic Brief - February 20, 2018

• Small Business Confidence High - According to the latest CNBC/Survey Monkey Small Business Survey, Q1 2018 small-business confidence is rising as optimism rises among small-business owners about the newly enacted tax-reform package.

• Siemens IPO - German conglomerate Siemens (SIEGY) said that it plans to sell shares but retain a majority stake in its health care division, Siemens Healthineers, in the first half of 2018.

• S&P, Dow Slip - The S&P and the Dow fell early today after six days of gains, because of disappointing quarterly results from Walmart and a rise in bond yields.

Financial and Economic Brief - February 13, 2018

• Economy “Still Strong” - According to New York Fed President William Dudley, the economy is “likely to continue to grow above its normal pace”.

• Oil Prices Falling - Oil prices fell 10% this week, dropping below $60 a barrel for the first time in 2018.

• Stock Market Up - Wall Street’s main indexes rose for a second day today, fueled by gains in technology and financial stocks.