How To Tell a Seller Their Asking Price Is Too High?

I’m sitting here pondering on finding a more effective and considerate way to do the following… (any suggestions will be greatly appreciated)

Seller: “A price of $_______ is what I want.”
Broker: “OK, great… so tell me, how did you arrive at your price? It helps us to determine whether we’re the right team to sell your business.”
Seller: “I sat down with my accountant and this is what we worked out.”
Broker: “OK great… so, lets look at what the historical and latest market stats on prices and multiples in your industry tells us.”
Seller: “This will be interesting!”
Broker: “As you can see, if we use this multiple on your current adjusted profit, the price is going to be somewhat less than than you’re asking…”
Seller: “Oh… but my business is different.”
Broker: “Really? Tell me more?”

And right there, the tone has changed. Enough to cast doubt in the Seller’s mind as to whether the Broker is the right one. As to whether any Broker can possibly sell the business for what’s wanted.

Granted, knowing what the market will actually do is anyone’s guess. But to blindly disregard the Broker, who plays in the market all day every day is not sensible.

But, knowing how to break news that is not so welcomed is never easy either…


Another Consultant, Another Exit Strategy Discussion….

Another day, another conversation with a Consultant who, when starting to explore Exit Strategy options, realises what they thought will be Saleable is not. Well, not in its current form anyway.

So, once the wind had been knocked out of their sails, they began to ponder what the hell to do next?

The first reaction was generally anger. Annoyed that what they thought they’d bought into with the whole start-your-own-business thing was in fact a crock!

A crock in so far as, having been sold the live-the-dream business model, to only be reminded that this model is really just a different version of a job.

Doing a diagnostic like the “Sellability Score” certainly helps to map out what’s current and raises the questions re what to do next.

But in order for this process to be most effective, time is of the essence. If you’re a Consultant and you want an Asset to sell once you’re done with it… Start Planning and Restructuring NOW.

If you want to talk further about this, feel free to call me.


TEMpting: how Business Sellers and Buyers have been tempted this week…



If any of the following tickle your fancy,
please contact me by emailing
letting me know which one it is…



BS2 = Online Retailer
Plan B – Due Diligence concluded,  to be settled early May

BS8 Waiting on Seller
Change of plans due to recent events…
BS9 = Specialist Leadership and Talent Management Provider
Completed Sellability Score.
Looking to a 2013-14 kick off, getting all ducks in a row in the meantime.
BS10 = Specialist Offline Retailer
Completed Sellability Score.
1st meeting completed, next steps discussed.
Financials arrived, Stage 2 of process begins.
BS11 = Hairdresser
Completed Sellability Score.
First chat April 8. Waiting on Stage 2 financials.
BS13 Specialist Equipment Provider
Completed Sellability Score.
Recommendations being pursued with favourable feedback.
BS14 Leading Book Supplier
Completed Sellability Score
Financials received, more to come. Currently going through refinancing dramas!
BS15 #1 in Google for This Offering
Completed Sellability Score
Offer made and support decisions to progress awaiting advise. Family issue delaying process.
BS16 Furnishings Importer, 60% owned
Completed Sellability Score
1st meeting (phone call) completed, Stage 2 financials due.
BS17 Specialist Offering
Completed Sellability Score
Analysis done and advised. Decision NOT to sell made.
Now using Sellability Score information as a Business Plan – in Reverse!

BS18 Beauty Salon
Meeting booked April 17
Offer made and support decisions to progress awaiting advise.

Decision made to go with other Broker. The idea of paying for own expenses to do marketing proved to big a hurdle to get over.
BS19 Leading Wedding Services Provider
1st meeting had, waiting on Stage 2 financials
BS20 Window Cleaner
 “Sellability Score” completed
to be discussed next week
BS21 Business “Consultancy”
 “Sellability Score” completed
Decision made to put ON HOLD as two partners have come to realisation they need to make some fundamental decisions first, before going to market.
BS22 Business “Consultancy”
Stage 1 of process commenced, 1st meeting booked
BS23 Health and Beauty Salon
Stage 1 of process commenced, 1st meeting booked


The “Sellability Score” reports continue to dribble in each and every week.

More calls to make as a result and more emails to send 🙂
Onwards and Upwards!


When a Change of Business Model Makes Sense…

When I started work with a Client today, we were going down a particular path, one we had been on for weeks… and then it changed.

We continued to explore one line of thinking and it became obvious that those around the table were not really comfortable with where we were going. So with all bets off, we re-explored what we were doing.

Only to come to the conclusion that we wanted to take a different road, one that seemed much more “right”!

We will all sleep on it tonight and see what verdict we wake with again tomorrow… although my guess is that the new path will be pursued from now on.

Yet another example of it never being to late to start again…


There’s a Wallet on the Footpath, What To Do?

When walking down Collins St Melbourne today, I came across a wallet lying spreadeagle on the footpath.

What would you do?

This is what I did…
1. picked it up
2. trawled through it in the hope of finding the identity of the owner
3. tried to make a few calls but no luck
4. did a White Pages search, based on Drivers License, and found the home number
5. left message on answering machine
6. “my name is Denise Hall and I have your wallet” was the message left
7. 2 hours later, my phone rings
8. 4 hours later, the wallet is collected
9. a bottle of champagne in turn was delivered, as a token of appreciation (which I was happy with too 🙂

What has intrigued me most though is the reaction of others to the above… without exception, the response was “that was very good of you”.


Isn’t this what you should do?
What is “good” about it?
Isn’t this the Right thing to do?
What would you have done?

Sure, it wasn’t the Easiest thing to do, but without doubt, it was the Right thing to do.

Time to enjoy a few bubbles now…


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