If you are considering selling a business, you will need to complete a business valuation. A valuation is simply an appraisal of the company. Valuations tend to be involved, so if you find yourself wading in stacks of paperwork, you might consider hiring a business valuation consultant to make the process more palatable. Other situations that require the valuation of a business are mergers, divorces and annual reviews.
Whether you have decided to recruit the help of a professional or complete the valuation on your own, here are three documents that you will need to have handy.
Description of What is for Sale
When you are trying to assign a value to your business, you have to determine what is for sale. If you own a restaurant, for example, will you be selling proprietary recipes, the furniture or just the name? At the same time, if you are selling a retail store, potential buyers will want to know if you will be including any remaining inventory, fixtures and electronic equipment, too. A history of the company is also helpful as it could shape future forecasts, solvency and viability.
Financial statements, balance sheets and competitive forecasts are all important in determining the value of your business. Potential buyers, acquirers or partners would like to know how the company has performed in the past in order to predict how it could perform in the future. If they take over the business completely, it serves as a benchmark that they can measure against in case it does not continue to perform well under their ownership. It could also give them a glimpse into potential opportunities they can delve into once new management is set in place.
In a business valuation, it is important to include legal information such as organization charts, contracts and employee financial obligations. Probable buyers would like to know the commitments they will be inheriting. This will help them determine what they will have to re-negotiate, what they can leave behind and what they will have to fulfill. Particularly important are any outstanding litigation issues, intellectual property and payroll data.
Industry details, demographic information and employee resumes help complete the valuation of a business.
Descriptions, financials and legal details about your business is information you already have on hand. Organizing it into a neat packet is the last step.