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Don’t sell your business too early or too late !

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Don’t sell your business too early or too late !

By , October 24, 2011

Since Steve Jobs’ death, plenty of entrepreneurs, employees and notable industry folks have been finally able to reveal anecdotes of interacting with Jobs and the company, many of them a testament to Jobs’ work ethic and dedication.

One new story this week surrounds the popular start-up Dropbox, which had caught Apple’s eye. In a meeting with Steve Jobs, the company was offered a nine-digit acquisition offer – an incredible opportunity for a start-up.

However, the founders declined and held on for something better. This week, it’s reported the company is now valued at over $US4 billion.

Getting a buy-out offer from Apple seems like a dream come true for any entrepreneur. But it wasn’t true to the founders’ vision, and certainly wasn’t the best move for the company at the time.

Just because you get a buy-out offer, or are presented with an opportunity that seems too good to be true, doesn’t mean you should take it. Don’t sacrifice the vision of your company for some short-time financial gain. In the end, you’re passing up the real opportunity to realise the full potential of your business.

…But don’t pass up an opportunity

Last week department store giant DealsDirect made its biggest acquisition ever, purchasing the corporate shopping network Shoppers Advantage. It’s a very significant move that will combine some of the companies’ key strengths and enable them to grow even faster.

Although you should be careful, considreed and strategic about getting involved in acquisitions, you should also be open to the fact they can expand your business faster than you expected.

If you have a particular weakness and an acquisition opportunity presents itself, be willing to consider it. In the long run, it’ll make things much easier.

Patrick Stafford – SmartCompany

Craig West

Craig West

Managing Director | Succession Plus

Craig West is a strategic accountant who has over 20 years’ experience advising business owners. His background as a CPA in public practice, provided invaluable experience in the key issues of concern to business owners. Following 6 years of study to gain two masters degrees, Craig focused on Capital Gains Tax (CGT) for business sales advising on strategic management of tax issues. This experience formed a very strong view that business owners (and often their advisers) were unprepared and unaware of the steps required to prepare a business for exit.

Craig now acts as a strategic mentor for mid-market business owners and has written four critically acclaimed books on employee incentives, succession planning, asset protection and exit strategies. Craig has conducted numerous seminars and keynote presentations throughout Australia & internationally, including adviser education programs for the Institute of Chartered Accountants and CPA Australia.