For print shop owners, the decision to sell a printing business is not an easy one to make. Some of the biggest concerns that printers have are: how they are going to find a qualified buyer; will they be able to offer financing for the deal if necessary; and will they have to stay involved to train the buyer so they can properly run the business. On top of that, printers will want to make sure their customers are in capable hands after selling the business.
As a result of these factors, many independent printers say, “I don’t know how to sell my printing business even if I wanted to.” The good news for them is that there are ways to sell a printing business the right way, where the business is properly valuated, the print shop owner gets the right value for their business, the buyer is fully trained and supported in managing the business, and the customers continue to receive the high levels of quality and service they deserve.
Here are five steps to guide owners on how to sell a print shop:
- When a Buyer Asks, “Why Are You Selling the Business?” Be Prepared to Answer.
You have decided or are at least thinking about how to sell my printing business. This is a question that potential buyers will be asking, so you want to make sure you are prepared to provide a thoughtful answer. Common reasons for selling a business are because of retirement, the owner wanting to move on to a new pursuit of other business ventures, or health reasons.No matter what your reason is for selling, it’s a great idea to write down your reasons and then think about what the real reason might be. This will help you be ready for the question from buyers that is most likely to come up.
- Prepare Early for the Sale to Ease the Transition for You and the Buyer.
Whether your timetable for selling a printing business is immediate or in the near future, it is crucial to prepare early for the sale. You want to make sure that you have all of your business documentation up to date to make for a smooth transition to the buyer, including financial records, tax returns, customer information, and equipment leases. All of this preparation will help pave the way to your future life after the business is sold.You should also think about your next steps and what you want to do with your life after the sale is made. Write down a list of post-business goals or ideas, which will further motivate you to get organized so that you can make those dreams a reality. In order to accomplish this, you need to price your business correctly by getting a proper valuation that will ensure you have a realistic selling price.
- Make Sure You Get a Full Valuation of Your Business from People Who Know Printing.
Perhaps the toughest part of selling a printing business is that many owners do not know how to sell a print shop for the right price. It is important to get an accurate business valuation from experienced professionals who know the business of printing, including all of the logistics behind it. Setting an unrealistic price for your business will deter buyers and prolong the sale, and it could even possibly result in not being able to sell the business at all.Luckily, there is help for printers who would like help in figuring out the right price for their printing business. Consult with industry experts like Minuteman Press that can provide a proper valuation of your printing business because they have been involved in the printing industry for over 40 years. Avoid working with people who have never set foot in a print shop; make sure to partner with people that can provide an accurate valuation of your business to ensure you get full, fair value for it. It’s also important to find a partner who can attract a larger pool of buyers than you could on your own.
- You Have Built a Legacy of High Quality and Service with Customers … How Will You Preserve It?
Make no mistake about it; selling a printing business is an emotional decision as much as it is a financial one. Printers are a special breed of business owners that truly care about the products as well as the customer service they provide. Over the years, your customers have become like family, and as part of your local community you want to make sure they are taken care of after you sell the business.The good news is that there is a way for you to get the right buyers for your printing business that will continue to serve your customers with the utmost care while also getting a fair price you deserve. By partnering with industry experts to sell your print shop, you will be able to sell your business with the added peace of mind that comes with knowing your customers will be in great hands.
- Know Your Time Frame, Then Start Early and Ask For Help.
Many business owners wait too long to sell their business. Keep in mind that when you sell a printing business, it takes time. Think in terms of years. Are you two years away from retirement? Why not see what your options are sooner than later? There is no reason to have to scramble at the last minute when there are resources to help you prepare for the sale.The key is to reach out early and ask the right people for help in order to give yourself the proper time it takes to sell the business. Follow the steps outlined above to give yourself a solid head start, and meet with experienced printing business professionals who can assist you with all aspects of the sale.
Minuteman Press has over 40 years of experience in the printing industry and offers assistance in buying and selling printing businesses. Click here for more information on selling a printing business with Minuteman Press.