5 Pro Tips to Put Your Restaurant Business for Sale
5 Pro Tips to Put Your Restaurant Business for Sale
Selling a restaurant that you have been successfully running for some time can be an emotionally challenging and long drawn affair. Firstly, as it wouldn’t be easy to sell off a business that you would have invested precious time, efforts and sentiment in building, and secondly, as selling a restaurant and handling all of the leads as well as negotiations can be a very complex and time consuming mission to take on.
Whatever be your reason to sell – whether it is financial duress, interest in a new entrepreneurial venture or simply a yearning to retire, there are certain things you could do to make the entire process smoother and quicker. As experienced business brokers in this space, we would like to share 5 pro tips that you could follow, even before you put your restaurant business up for sale.
1. Time it Right
Selling a food business in these uncertain times can be tricky to navigate on your own. If you are set on selling, it would be good to start planning for the exit as soon as you can. This entails keeping all the financial statements in order, maintaining healthy sales and cash flows, and keeping close tabs on the market scenario, so that you can be prepared should any good opportunity arise.
Needless to say, all of this needs to be done even before you list your restaurant business as available for sale. This will not only help to ascertain the true financial standing of your business, but will also help to position your business as a lucrative opportunity for interested buyers. You don’t want to find yourself in a situation where you have spent all this time putting the business on the market, only to find you are not prepared with the documents and information buyers will need to review.
2. Price it Right
This is where a lot of sellers can get it wrong, by allowing emotion to rule over market dynamics. It is important to set a fair price, that is realistic and justifiable. For this, an up-to-date record of your financial position, coupled with all the tangible and intangible assets that you might own – equipment, staff, brand name and logo as well as reputation should be taken into account. You would also need to factor in the depreciation cost of the equipment and assets you might own, as that would have an impact on the asking price.
It would be good to seek professional guidance to determine a fair price for both you and the prospective buyer. Having said this, the right price is that which would make both the seller and the buyer happy – and if you can achieve this, you’ve got a great deal.
3. Work out the kinks
As with any business, there will always be room for improvement. Presenting your business in the best light possible is essential to getting a good price. This entails making sure that the interior and exterior of your restaurant is in good shape, and that the equipment is all in good working condition. If this requires you to get the space repainted, or the windows and upholstery repaired, then do it. As unnecessary as this might seem given that you are going to sell off the business anyway, these little things can make the difference between an average and a good offer.
Apart from the cosmetic and functional aspects, it is also a good idea to check on the lease, if the space or the equipment is on lease. Make sure that there would be no issues in transferring the lease or ownership to the buyer. This thoughtfulness can help you earn more interest and consideration with buyers.
4. Boost its Reputation
Now that you have decided to sell, all your focus should be on making your restaurant seem like a very attractive business opportunity. Having taken care of the basics, you really want to go all out to make your restaurant even more popular, and having a steady stream of customers lining up. Do everything in your power to provide a great customer experience – starting with the food, the service, the specials and the extras like the ambience. You could also get more active on social media (if you aren’t already), and invite customers to leave reviews and ratings.
Given how important online research is today, it would be only natural for potential buyers to check out the online reputation of a restaurant even before actually visiting it! And you want to ensure that your restaurant’s online reputation is as good, or even better than what it has offline!
5. Hire a Broker
We aren’t saying this only because we happen to be brokers. There are a number of ways that you could go about listing your restaurant business for sale on your own, through online and offline channels. However, having a good business broker by your side can make the entire process a lot easier for you. From the expanded reach and visibility that your business would get, to negotiating the best deal from among multiple interested buyers and help with the paperwork involved, the broker’s commission is a small price to pay for the convenience and advantages you would enjoy.
At Absolute Business Brokers, we are passionate about what we do, and are committed to making the entire process a smooth one for our clients. If you are looking to put your restaurant business for sale, we invite you to speak with any of our expert brokers to see what is possible for you.