Florida Business For Sale Sold Activity (October 12,2011)

Florida Business For Sale  Florida Businesses Sold Activity (Oct.12, 2011)

I am a Florida Business broker working with business owners selling their Florida  businesses, and business owners looking for acquisitions.  Prospective business buyers I work with are located in Florida, US., and Business buyers in Europe and throughout the world.

As a  member of Business Brokers of Florida, which is the largest state Association of Business Brokers in the United States we have access to significant data regarding businesses being bought and sold .   Thousands of businesses for sale are represented by over 1000 business brokers that are members of this Association.

These business brokers list their respective businesses for sale and prospective business buyers on a centralized listing site and buyers and sellers of businesses are brought together. Several thousand businesses for sale are listed, modified, and advertised thru this website.  Valuable information regarding Florida business for Sales and Florida Businesses Sold help me as a Business Broker Professional  keep track of the ebb and flow of the Florida Business Acquisition Market.  Understanding a business to assist in selling that business requires an understanding of the numbers behind  that business.  And understanding the marketplace in which this business may be sold is furthered by a review of the data surrounding businesses being bought and sold in Florida.

The below are a few statistics, totals, and items of note surrounding the business acquisition and sales market in the State of Florida. Other businesses are bought and sold without the assistance of members Business Brokers of Florida, and that info is not included in this analysis.

Recent Businesses Sold in Florida Activity (as of  Oct. 12, 2011)

  • Businesses Sold in Florida through Business Brokers of Florida  in last 30 days  – 28 vs 63 in prior 30 day (July 26,2011) documented  period
  • Top  industry of  Businesses Sold in Florida through Business Brokers of Florida in  last 30 days:   Restaurants   (as usual…)
  • Avg Days it took to sell Florida Businesses Sold in last 30 days  – 162 (about 5 months vs.  277 days-  (9 months)- in last documented 30 day period (July 2011), doesnt include businesses that were removed from market without selling

As of Oct. 12, 2011…

Businesses Currently For Sale through Business Brokers of Florida – 3301 vs. 3336   in last 30 day period. about same

  • Number of Business Currently for Sale in Jacksonville Florida Area (Duval County and St.Johns County) with Adjusted Cash Flow Greater than $100,000- 67
  • Number of Business Currently For Sale In Jacksonville Fl area with adjusted cash Flow greater than $200,000 –  21
  • Number of Business Currently For Sale In Jacksonville Fl area with adjusted cash Flow greater than $300,000 – 9


Current Business Interest and Activity Obseravtions: as of Oct 12,2011

As a business broker I work with many “Business Buyer Prospects“.  I realize so many will remain perpetually  “Prospects” and a select few will actually result in being “Business Buyers” I both understand and accept this fact. 

But recently  I have been working with several buyer prospect that had a goal/objective of finding Florida Business For Sale with adjusted cash flow of $300,000.

  • Of the 3301 business for Sale in Florida 193 have adjusted cash flow greater than $300,000  about 5% !  
  • Of the 3301 business for Sale in Florida 103 have adjusted cash flow greater than $400,000  only about 3% !
  • Number of business sold in Florida with adjusted cash flow greater than $300,000 in last year – 36 

Buying 2 synergistic businesses that may produced a combined $300,000 adjusted cash flow or owner benefit is a strategy that is being considered.

*All above info compiled from data available via the bbfmls website. And addresses information about businesses being bought and sold and reported thru this Professional organization of Business Brokers of Florida.

For more info or questions regarding the Florida Business Acquisition Market or Florida Businesses for sale please contact

Scott M Messinger




How to Sell Your Business for More

At some point a business owner considers selling their business.  Sometimes it is just a fleeting thought.  Sometimes its a thought of  “I don`t need this anymore, get me out”.  Other times its a well planned out progressive process.  You want to sell your business- how do you sell it for more.

This sounds like a fairly straight forward approach, but just as the selling of a business process can be very involved, the question of how to sell it for more firstly needs definition.  I am a business broker based in Florida and speak to many many business owners about the potential sale of their business.  I also sold my own business several years ago.

Selling Your Business When The Time Is Right

Just consider the simple analogy of having a rusty bike in the garage with flat tires that you want to sell today.  You put it out at the end of the drive way put a For Sale sign on it- what do you think it will sell for?  How can you sell that bike for more tomorrow than you can today?

Selling Your Business For More:

  • Selling your business for more can be a very good thing and very reasonable goal.
  • Trying to sell a business for more than it is worth can ultimately result in your business not being sold at all.
  • Setting the Goal today to improve your business, prepare it for sale so that it is worth more after your improvements is probably your best approach
  • Wanting to sell your business for more than “what you heard a local competitor sold for” can also be a mis-guided path.

Preparing Your Business For Sale

So selling your business for more is a reasonable and understandable goal.  How do you get more for your business?  Start today preparing your business for sale.  Like so many of your other important business decision, prepare yourself a to-do list and systematically address those items.  Below are some items you will want to include on your to-do list to help ready your business to sell for more. Ask and honestly answer these questions about your business.

How  are your financials?  Are there some unusual entries on your P/L that have escaped needed adjustment?  Are all sales accounted for?   Do you have a good clean P/L statement?  For smaller businesses Do you have a P/L and Balance sheet?

How reliant is your business on you.  What can you do today to help your company be more about your company and less about you.?

How documented are your systems, procedures, policies, pricing structure?

Right Customers Base

Photo (c) discoverytraining.co.za

Is your customer base as diverse as it should be?  How reliant is your business on a few key customers.  And again do those customers do business with you the business owner or with the company?

Do you have the opportunity to add recurring revenue streams to your business, but elected to not pursue?  Do you have some contracted customers that you just haven’t updated contracts with?

Spend some time to meet with some of your trusted advisers.  Dont rely on information you hear through the grapevine about this person selling their business for this amount.  Talk to your attorney, your accountant , or visit with a business broker start to really learn the marketplace.   Have you scraped the rust off your bike?, painted it ? oiled the chain? pumped up the tires?  put an ad in the newspaper? on the Internet?- Is your bike worth more today than it was yesterday?

How do you sell your business for more tomorrow or next year  than it is worth today?  Start today preparing your business for sale.

Selling My Business – How Much is my Business Worth

Selling My Business How Much is my Business Worth.  Almost all businesses are for sale to some degree. Lets say your business is not For Sale. Assume  Your business is worth $100,000.  You love what you are doing, someone contacts you with an offer to buy your business for $500,000.  Is your business now For Sale? The preceding is not a likely scenario for most business owners.  To successfully sell your business planning and preparation is needed.  But if you are now or at some point considering the sale of your business you may want to consider the following 3 points:

1.     Identify your honest interest level  when selling your business. Early in the decision process of selling your business consider what approach you may take towards selling your business.  As a Business Broker in Florida I interact with the various interest levels by small business owners.

  • My business is not for sale but if someone walks in and offers me way more than what I think it is worth- I would sell my business
  • My business is not for sale but if you run across someone that would want to buy it please let me know.
  • I want to pursue selling my business but I won’t sell it for less than…( A somewhat inflated price) .  I am willing to accept that it may take 1-2 years to sell my business, and if priced too high I can accept the fact that my  business may not even be sold.
  • I want to pursue selling my business and after significant due diligence I feel the price I am seeking is consistent to what other like businesses have recently sold for.
  • I want to sell my business and I want out now.  I will set my price aggressively and set a lower price than price currently sought for businesses similar to mine.  I will expect this aggressive pricing to both help me sell my  business and decrease the amount of time it will take to sell my business.

If you do have a true interest in selling your business as suggested in above  last 2 points you do need to  exercise due diligence to gain understanding of what the value of your business may be.

Business Value

Photo (c) nett.com.au

2.    You can expect that the  perceived value of your business to you and the value of the business to a potential buyer will probably be 2 different values.

  • Ultimately the price of your business is what a willing and able buyer is prepared to pay to buy your business.
  • Seek “reasonableness” to your price that you will seek to sell your business for. If similar businesses to yours are sold at 1 1/2 times adjusted cash flow, why is yours worth 3 times adjusted cash flow?
  • Ask yourself what you honestly would pay to buy your business.
  • Do a free Search on my website https://www.sellabusinessflorida.com  0r similar sites to research what similar businesses to yours is asking to sell their business for.  Remember – all businesses are different, but use such a search as part of your due diligence.  A business for sale asking price and the price a business sold for can be greatly different, but asking prices can provide some basis-while current  Businesses Sold information is more pertinent
  • Speak to your trusted advisers.  A business broker may be able to help with non-public info on sold businesses in your area.  Your accountant or attorney also  may or may not be aware of such sales as well.  A Professional Business Valuation specialist may benefit you.

3.    Whether it  is part of your exit strategy to sell your business or not, you should have an exit strategy.

  • Most small business owners do not have an exit strategy.
  • If you own a business you should have an exit strategy.  Do some planning, perform some due diligence. Know what you have or may have.
  • Even if you are not planning to sell your business there is value in knowing  approximate value of this potentially large asset.  You know what your house is worth, you car, your other assets. Understanding the value of your business can be a significant piece of information when planning ahead.

Selling ones business can be a rewarding experience when done properly.  Understanding  a proper value for your business can set the stage to a successful sale of your business or a business that is unable to find a willing and able buyer.

Starting Buying Selling a Business: What Are They Thinking?

Want to start a business?  Want to Buy a Business?  Want to Sell your business?  These interest are very different but there is one common element among these significant business decisions.  Money- .  While working with business owners and individuals with the process of buying and selling businesses, I consistently come across a common element that I believe would be surprising to most that are ” looking from the outside in”.

Money is always a determinant factor in the process, but so very often it is the other factors that create the motivation that steers the process.  As a  small business owner or one that recently started a business one wonders if the thoughts, trepidations, or concerns that you have are shared by others. It is common to wonder if others struggle with decisions such as you.  What are some of the thoughts others have regarding these important decisions.

Motives Behind Buying/Selling A Business

Buying A Business

Photo (c) expertbusinessadvice.com

Currently I am working with business owners that are selling their businesses and it may be somewhat surprising that money is not the primary reason they have decided to sell their business.  But make no mistake all business owners want the maximum amount they can attain for their business but the reasons for selling  are varied and different.

I am also working with several individuals looking to buy businesses and they as well generally are looking for some sort of change.  Again they are looking  for value in the business they are seeking to buy, but the reasons they are looking to get into something different are also varied and diverse.

Many  people out there, and readers of business articles such as this are contemplating change.  So many of tomorrows business buyers are employees that are working for someone else today.  They are seeking change.  Many of the business owners  looking to sell their business are seeking change. Most all starting a business, buying a business, selling  a business are seeking change.  When talking with seller of businesses and potential buyers of businesses one learns the “why” is varied, and comprises similar thought processes I experienced as one that both started a business, bought several businesses and sold my own business as well.

Perspective very often if the difference maker in what drives this business decision. The excitement and energy that comes along with doing something new where the roads ahead are full of unknowns and optimism  can certainly provide different perspective than the business owner that has experienced the challenges and sees the roads behind him. The reasoning behind the decision to buy start or sell a business may look very similar but it really is the perspective that provides the different “take” on that reasoning.

I want to Buy a Business, I want to Start a Business because…” –

1)MONEY– want to make lots
2)PASSION– I love making widgets
3)ACCOMPLISHMENT– It just feels good
4)OBLIGATION– It was my families business
5)EXCITEMENT– I love working 24/7
6)CONTROL– I control my own destiny
7)OPPORTUNITY– I’m young-limitless
8) CHANGE– I want to do something different

“I want to sell my Business because “-

1)MONEY-Not making enough, money is less important
2)PASSION– I used to love making widgets
3)ACCOMPLISHMENT– The feeling of accomplishment is gone
4)OBLIGATION– My family is no longer around
5)EXCITEMENT– after working 24/7 I am now Burned out
6)CONTROL-Insurance Companies,employees,IRS,State,control my destiny
7)OPPORTUNITY– I feel old- exceeded my limit
8) CHANGE– I want to do something different

While the list could go on and on, Contrary to common belief—– Its not always JUST about the money.


Hands off or Hands On- What Type of Business Owner Are You?

What kind of business owner do you consider yourself-  Are you a Hands on Business Owner or do you consider yourself more of a big picture operator that consistently effort yourself to avoid the minutia of the business.  I think the majority of us are a hybrid of these 2 approaches.

When running a small business, or involved with a startup business,  on an almost daily basis you are faced with the question ” Do I do it myself or do I hire others to do it for me”.  Most all are aware of the concept Time is Money- but like so many other business concept we all draw the line in the sand at different places.  We are not always consistent with where we draw that line, and find that that line moves as or business moves or the economic climate around our business moves.

This question can be applied from basic business task of running to the post office to mail off some stuff  or calling some prospects to significant larger issues like hiring outside help to handle your marketing functions, doing my own website, or trying to do my own SEO .  I am a business broker and I help business owners and individuals in the process of buying or selling businesses.  Selling ones business is a very significant event and very often like so many other decisions a business owner will decide to try to sell the business themselves or hire someone to help sell their business.

Are You A Hands-On Person Like Me?

This decision is part of the never ending series of question a small business owner needs to answer. In my current profession as a business broker if Florida I am faced with these same similar questions on a daily basis.  Do I do it myself or subcontract out that task or role. ” Maybe someone else can do it better, but I can do it cheaper”, or “Maybe someone else can do it cheaper, but I can do it better…”    Relatively speaking I am a fairly hands-on person.

My previous business I had owned for 20 years I was fairly hands on as well.  I helped install our production equipment on day 1 of the business, I worked on the production line, I worked in the truck delivering product, helped troubleshoot our equipment, performed testing and so on. I also set our policies, accounting procedures, QC procedures and company philosophy.   I enjoy knowing and understanding as much detail about my business as possible. Ultimately I was able to build a team of 25+ employees that both allowed our business to grow and ultimately allowed me to run the business from 1500 miles away for 7 years.

Business Owner

Photo (c) stage2planning.com

While others may say “I don’t want to know the details- I just want it to work”.  People reach business success with both approaches.  I have a good friend that owns a Plumbing business and has very little plumbing knowledge- he doesn’t want to.  He is a very good businessman, with a very successful plumbing business – he  is a big picture, hands-off guy and I think his wife may call me to fix their  leaky faucet before she ask him. But again he is a successful business owner.

The real question that comes in is at what point does the hands on approach limit your business growth.  When does- “I have to do it myself or it wont get done right”  approach become business limiting?  So many businesses do not make a transition to “count on others” and the business remains a certain size.  If the company goal is to stay a certain size then this approach may be both applicable and appropriate.

Hands-On VS Hands-Off Business Owner

But as one desires to grow a business to a certain size- “letting go” a little control is needed.   As working as a business broker in Florida very often I have business owners ask me can I just sell my business myself.  Here is how I summarize my true beliefs on this very important question.

Most business owners I know have a fairly full day- to say the least.  If your day is full already how can you possibly take on the task of trying to sell your business.  And I truly believe this.  Assuming selling your business is a fairly involved process how do you squeeze that continuous task into to your already packed stream of work.  Maybe you say to yourself,  I am going to devote a lot of time and effort towards selling my business, but then what suffers?

Does the business you are trying to sell now have the person steering the ship significantly pre-occupied?  During a recent speaking engagement I compared the process of running a business to running a marathon and addressed the need to finish strong.  Why run the race hard for 23 years or 23 miles and then stumble in for the last year/mile?   It is important when one is selling their business to try to finish strong.

I beleive one of the most important decision a business owner makes its the decision to sell their business.  Like so many decisions a business owner has to “do it myself” or hire others to do it.  Can I do cheaper?  Can I do it better? Do I have the time to do it?  Do I want to do it?Some of the similar questions one faces every day waking up as a business owner, but when selling ones business the stakes are significantly higher.