How to Sell a Business: Screen Buyers

What to Send to Buyers

What should I send after I receive the buyer's NDA?

If you want to save time and increase the chances of selling your business, then you should prepare a short written summary of your business that answers the basic questions that nearly every buyer will have. You can quickly lose buyers after the second or third round of phone or email tag. Simplify and streamline this process and send the buyer a brief summary on your business. We call this a “business summary.”

A business summary is basically a brief overview or summary of your business. It answers the basic questions that nearly every buyer will ask you. Every buyer will want to know the answer to basic questions about your business after replying to your ad or signing your NDA.

Can you answer the following questions about your business?  A business summary addresses the following questions quickly and efficiently, saving you countless hours with buyers (not all questions will apply to your business):

  • What are your hours of operation?
  • What are the lease terms?
  • How long of a training period are you willing to offer?
  • Are you willing to sign a non-compete?
  • Are you willing to finance a portion of the sale? If so, what are the terms?
  • When was the business started? By whom?
  • How long have you owned the business?
  • Can you tell me about the product or service briefly?
  • What is the history of the business?
  • Can you tell me how you handle pricing?
  • Who are your competitors?
  • What are your major operating expenses?
  • What could you do to improve your business?
  • What expenses could you possibly lower?
  • Are the employees willing to stay after the sale?
  • How much do you pay your employees?
  • Are they paid benefits?
  • Are there any key employees?
  • What licenses are needed to operate the business?
  • What were the gross sales for the last three years?
  • How profitable is the business?
  • Who is the landlord? Is he/she a large, national landlord or small, local landlord?
  • Do you have a website?
  • Financial questions – What is your average accounts receivable, accounts payable, etc?
  • What percentage of your sales are cash sales?
  • Who does your bookkeeping and how often is it done?
  • How much inventory do you currently have? Is it included in the price?
  • How much working capital is needed to operate the business?
  • What is all of the equipment, furniture and hard assets worth?
  • Is bank financing available for this business?
  • Description of premises and lease terms – square feet, length of lease, terms, NET/CAM, options to renew, annual increase, security deposit?
  • Is the business seasonal?
  • Are any family members working in the business?
  • How many employees do you have? Full-time, part-time? Contract workers?
  • Is any equipment on lease?
  • Is any equipment on loan from suppliers?
  • Is any equipment not included in the sale that is located at the business?