Improve Books, Image to Boost Value
by: Celine Dufresne, CGMA, CMAI
Broker/Certified Value Builder
Are you wondering what the keys are to improving the value of your company?
The first key is to have your accountant take a look at your accounting procedures and make recommendations on how to improve them. He or she may also help in preparing financial projections for the coming year.
The second key is to review the reputation, image, and marketing materials of your company. Certainly, the quality of your product or service is paramount, but how your firm presents itself to customers, clients, suppliers—and the outside world—is also very important.
The appearance of your facilities and customer service—beginning with how people are treated on the telephone or in your waiting/reception area—are the kind of first impressions that are critical in dealing with your customers or clients.
Don’t forget the company’s Website; in many cases, it is the initial introduction to your company.
A third key is to get rid of outdated inventory—sell off any extra assets such unused or outmoded equipment. The proceeds can be used in the business. If there are any assets that should not be included in the value of the company, such as personal vehicles or real estate, you might want to separate them from the assets of the company. This is especially important if you are considering placing the business on the market.
Prospective purchasers expect everything they see to be included in the sale.
Another important key is to resolve any pending items. For example, if the company has a trademark on any of the important products, and the paperwork for registration is sitting on someone’s desk, now is the time to complete the filing.
Contracts, agreements, leases, franchise agreements and the like should be reviewed. If they need to be extended, take the appropriate action. A contract with a customer has value and if it is scheduled to expire soon, why not get it renewed now? The same is true for leases.
The key factors outlined above not only build value, but they also increase the bottom line.
If you are considering selling your company at some point, these key issues will come back many fold in the selling price. A professional business intermediary can help with other factors that can influence the value of the business.
Another hidden benefit of building the value of your company is that you ever know when a Fortune 500 company will come knocking at your door with an offer that you can’t refuse.
At that point it is probably too late to work on some of the issues mentioned above.