Working With The End In Mind
Anne Evamy has successfully started, operated and sold various businesses. Those experiences led to her current role as an advisor to small to medium size family and non-family business owners. Evamy, Owner & Advisor, Junction Point Inc., says recurring revenue is an important factor in making a company attractive to acquire.
In this interview, Evamy:
- Discusses the sale of her marketing business seven years ago;
- The value of having a Certified Value Builder;
- The importance of working with the end in mind
Anne Evamy has successfully started, operated and sold various businesses.
Those experiences led to her current role as an advisor to small to medium size family and non-family business owners.
Evamy, Owner & Advisor, Junction Point Inc., says recurring revenue is an important factor in making a company attractive to acquire.
She says she had not prepared herself or her business for a potential sale of her marketing company seven years ago. Although she had an accountant and lawyer advising her throughout the process, in retrospect she believes she should have hired an M&A specialist or business broker as well to prepare for the unexpected surprises that can come with an acquisition.
“I did not have any idea how stressful the entire process can be and the vulnerability of the seller (me) between closing date and effective date of the deal. Make sure you read your purchase agreement in its entirety before the final sign off and ensure no changes, deletions or additions have been made that you had not understood or agreed to,” says Evamy, who is a Certified Value Builder and Family Enterprise Advisor.
“Have an M&A specialist or business broker and a Certified Value Builder on your team of advisors. Most importantly I would focus on building my business with the end in mind (whatever time frame that might be) by creating a valuable and sellable asset/business, not just a profitable one.”
Evamy was the moderator of a panel discussion on Transitioning A Family Business at the Business Transitions Forum in Calgary.The Business Transition Forums for the rest of this year are October 12 in Winnipeg and November 23 in Vancouver.
Today, Evamy provides business owners with key insights about what attributes create a valuable business, helping them envision, strategize, plan, and implement key areas of priority, with the ultimate goal of a successful business transition. She also advises and facilitates discussion and support for families when the complexities of Family, Ownership and Business intersect.
Her love of business comes naturally, growing up in an entrepreneurial environment which was the breeding ground for her drive, creativity, curiosity, and persistence. Her family’s primary business interests were architecture, real estate, and an airline. This early training paired with her leadership on many sports teams honed her skills of focus, integrity, competitiveness, and pursuit of excellence. These skills combined with her optimism and entrepreneurial spirit led Evamy to chairing many committees as well as to start, build and operate several small successful businesses.
As she reflects on the sale of her marketing company a few years ago, Evamy says: “I wish I had a value builder. Somebody who could have helped me. I had a good lawyer and a good accountant but I wish I’d understood what it meant really to be approached. I wasn’t for sale. So I hadn’t been in the mindset to be prepared for my company or me to be sold. You know the (author) Stephen Covey comment, adage I guess, work with the end in mind. That would have been really valuable, and I just had never really understood that.
“So I wish I had been advised to or knew that I should also seek the counsel of somebody who was in either M&A work, or business broker, or a value builder so I had a more prepared business and a more prepared end to deal with that transition and to understand what it meant to make my business even more valuable and therefore get a higher multiple for it.”
Evamy says staging your business is very critical and it doesn’t matter when you want to sell it. Like anything, if you look at all of your assets, you want to ensure that you have some potential for liquidity at some point.
“So how do you make the best of that opportunity by building a business that ultimately can be sellable?”