Buying an existing business is an excellent way to kick-start your entrepreneurial journey. It is also a tremendous way for an established business to take itself to the next level of success.
Regardless of industry, there are many opportunities for business owners to accelerate their revenue, market, service, or product goals by purchasing an existing business from owners that want out of the industry or are ready to retire.
Starting a business and then slowly and methodically growing it organically can take a long time. It’s also typically a massive time commitment for the owner. While there is nothing wrong with a slow burn and many successful businesses have operated that way, many business owners don’t want to wait. They want to leverage an established system or process, name, customer list or team. This is actually how I grew my business.
Buying a business is not to be done on a whim. Like everything, you get better results with a plan. What do you know about the previous owner? the financials? their systems? their customers? their team (employees)? Do you want to buy all of those, or just cherry-pick the best parts? How do you know if you’re paying the right price? And how are you going to pay for it?
The first step is to identify why you want to make the purchase. When you know why you can reflect on it every time you need to make a decision. If the decision supports your why then do it. If it detracts from your why, then you probably should not, or it may be necessary to re-examine your why.
The best part of buying a business is that there is no one way to do it. I believe that if you set out to create a win-win for all involved, then anything is possible. I have seen amazing deals where the buyer and seller were both over the moon with their arrangement. I’ve also seen things fall apart because it was ill-conceived and rushed. The difference in outcome is almost always as a result of the presence or absence of a purposeful plan.