Most businesses start with funds from the founder, perhaps also their family and friends. Sometimes this is all that’s needed and a few companies manage to bootstrap their way to market, but this is rare. Most ambitious companies – particularly those with products involving R&D – will need to raise funds from external investors (e.g. … Continue reading How to make a first approach to seed investors
Every business has an exit plan, there are a number of options but have you considered a management buyout? I would like to share my experience of supporting a company through the experience which took six months. The company, which I will call “ABC Co” had been established in the 1970’s as a service provider … Continue reading No ideal buyer? Look to your management team
A Finance Director’s role in a business, especially an SME, is so much more than a bean counter or a reviewer of financial figures. An experienced FD ought to be able to add value to the business in multiple ways, beyond the traditional number crunching aspect. I have focused on seven key skills that a good … Continue reading FDs contribute so much more than figures
Quoting Laurence J. Peter: “If you don’t know where you are going, you will probably end up somewhere else.” For a business owner, this sounds like a good reminder of the importance of having a strategic business plan. How else will your business end up where you want it to be? Business strategy seems to … Continue reading Do you know where your business is going?
Due diligence for an SME could be a “Minefield” or a “Walk in the Park”. Which, is down to the preparation of your management team and the keeping of good and up-to-date records. SMEs, will usually only experience being the subject of such detailed investigation into the affairs of their company when it is either … Continue reading How to make due diligence a walk in the park
With good financial reporting and processes, it is possible not to just deal with uncertainty, but to thrive in volatile times. Business can be like a game of chess where you plan your strategy and try to foresee what’s up ahead. You can’t control your opponent’s moves but you can have the knowledge to make … Continue reading How to manage uncertainty within your business
In a previous blog, I covered business valuation methods to answer the frequent question from business owners, “how much is my business worth?” MDs looking to sell their company often follow that question with another – “How can I add value to my business before I start to attract potential buyers and ‘put it on … Continue reading How to add value to your business prior to sale
We’re all familiar with alternative sources of business funding – crowdfunding, angel investors and so on but have you considered pension-led funding? One of my SME clients has been needing some financing recently in order to allow them to invest and grow the business. Their problem was that their balance sheet was not particularly strong, … Continue reading Bank said ‘no’ to loan, why not dip into your pension pot?
“If I sold my business next month how much do you think it could be worth?” A question I am often asked by small business owners who will happily discuss this at length. Yet, they generally don’t know how to work out the value of their business to a potential buyer. It is complex to … Continue reading Business For Sale but what offers can you expect?
Most owner-managed businesses have managed to survive setting up auto enrolment, but that is not the end of the process. Once you have established your business’s auto enrolment there are ongoing reviews and an increasing cost to build into your business. Nearly all SMEs are now covered by the requirement to provide a company pension … Continue reading Auto enrolment is not a destination but a never ending journey