Get the knowledge you need to make well-informed financial decisions at our upcoming events. Register now.


How to Negotiate When Selling a Business


Do you have the negotiation skills and know-how to sell your business for the right price? We’ve put together some tips to take the stress out of your business sale.

This article is published by Modoras Accounting (QLD) Pty Ltd V11022019

Walk Away Happy – How to Negotiate the Best Price When Selling Your Business

How to Negotiate When Selling Your Business

After pouring your heart and soul into your business for years, you may have recently decided that it’s time to sell and move on to your next adventure. You’ve worked hard to build a strong and profitable business and you’d like to realise the true value of what could be your most valuable financial asset to set you up for the future.

As a business owner, you have likely developed a wide range of skills that has helped your business grow. You’ve probably even negotiated a deal or two. But negotiating the sale of your business can be a significantly different experience. Your preparation for the sale and your negotiation skills could mean the difference between you walking away happy or accepting a lower price than expected.

We understand that selling your business can also be an emotional process, so here are a few tips that can make it just that little bit easier.

Know What Your Business is Worth

One of the most important considerations when preparing to sell your business is to find out what your business is worth. This is when you should engage a business advisor or accountant who specialises in business valuations. Going through the valuation process helps you understand the value of your business and how it compares to the current market or other businesses in your industry. It will give you information that allows you to set a fair sale price and consider what additional items may need to be included in the sale such as stock or equipment. Having an expert prepare your business valuation can be invaluable to the negotiation process.

Planning is Key. Prepare Early.

Planning ahead for your sale allows you time to consider all aspects of the process and also helps you feel confident during negotiations. Planning has been the key to many successful business sale transactions in the past. A business advisor can assist with a sale strategy that puts you in a position of confidence and makes it easy to share accurate and succinct information with a potential buyer. Prior planning also saves you time which means you have the opportunity to vet prospective buyers and weed out any competitors that may just be looking for inside information. Use this planning time to anticipate buyer questions and be ready with up to date and organised data to support your discussions.

Know Your Numbers

Your accountant will be your greatest asset during the sale process. They can do a lot more than just prepare financial statements – although these will be critically important for your sale negotiations. Share your plans for selling with your accountant early and get the benefit of their business know-how and industry experience. Obtain financial statements that outline all pertinent information for your potential buyer. Knowing the ins and outs of the numbers will also help you lay the groundwork for future growth predictions for the business. Your confidence will increase, and your negotiations will only be made stronger with your in-depth knowledge of the company’s finances and how that relates to the market.

Keep Communication Lines Open

Negotiations don’t need to be a battle. Building a relationship and rapport with your potential buyer could edge the deal towards the finish line. Listen carefully to what the buyer is saying during pre-purchase discussions or during negotiations as you may be able to identify underlying objectives that can assist you in the negotiation process. Be open and honest as this will give the buyer confidence in their decision to purchase. Propose possible solutions to issues you may have identified to build trust.

Find Some Common Ground

There may be some concessions required to ensure the sale goes ahead so it’s important to know what yours and your buyers’ needs are. A mutually beneficial agreement can mean a positive end to negotiations and both parties happy with the outcome.

Be Prepared to Walk Away

By planning your sale in advance, it’s likely you’ll have some idea of what your ‘walk away’ figure is. Be prepared to do this if the negotiation isn’t meeting your requirements. It’s important to be aware that returning to discussions after this may weaken your negotiating position though.

Increase Confidence for the Best Outcome

In any buy and sell transaction, the value is ultimately what the market is willing to pay. However, you can put yourself and your business in the best position to achieve a favourable outcome by following these tips. Being prepared will give you confidence in negotiations and help to turn your most valuable asset into years of financial security.

Not sure how to value or how to improve the value of your business? Enquire about a business valuation package or call us on 1300 888 803.

More financial Intelligence:

IMPORTANT INFORMATION: This blog has been prepared by Modoras Accounting (QLD) Pty. Ltd. ABN 81 601 145 215. The information and opinions contained in this blog is general information only and is not intended to represent specific personal advice (Accounting, taxation, financial, insurance or credit). No individual's personal circumstances have been taken into consideration for the preparation of this material. The information and opinions herein do not constitute any recommendation to purchase, sell or hold any particular financial product. Modoras Accounting (QLD) Pty. Ltd. recommends that no financial product or financial service be acquired or disposed of or financial strategy adopted without you first obtaining professional personal financial advice suitable and appropriate to your own personal needs, objectives, goals and circumstances. Information, forecasts and opinions contained in this blog can change without notice. Modoras Accounting (QLD) Pty. Ltd. does not guarantee the accuracy of the information at any particular time. Although care has been exercised in compiling the information contained within, Modoras Accounting (QLD) Pty. Ltd. does not warrant that the articles within are free from errors, inaccuracies or omissions. To the extent permissible by law, neither Modoras Accounting (QLD) Pty. Ltd. nor its employees, representatives or agents (including associated and affiliated companies) accept liability for loss or damages incurred as a result of a person acting in reliance of this publication. Liability limited by a scheme approved under Professional Standards Legislation.


“There are things I must do in the next five years to make that happen, but I know what they are and am working towards them. This is a much happier prospect than what I believed would be my lot when I reached retirement age.”


“I will remain with them as they have been great to me for many many years.”


“I’ve been a customer for several decades(scary how time flies). The service has always been impeccable, consistent, friendly.”


“Very happy with the ease of experience. And extremely happy with my return…much more than I anticipated.”


“The process suits me perfectly, the details and everything you need from me is provided. You then review and I come in to sign where appropriate. In a busy schedule, it suits me perfectly.”


“Our business with Modoras is always very professional and friendly making it a pleasure to attend.”

Peter & Merle

“I have recommended Modoras to friends and family. My sister in law is now a client.”


“Professional service with the personal care factor.”


“We are very happy with the service that Modoras have provided and find all staff very friendly and helpful.”


“Super friendly staff . Would recommend and have recommended.”


“We really enjoy the hospitality every time we visit the office, to meet and talk directly with the ‘Modoras family’ has a huge impact in entrusting our financial future.”


“We have built an excellent business rapport with our Accountant over many, many years. He has managed both personal and business tax and accounting matters for us. It is a pleasure to attend the lovely office in Mt Gravatt. The Reception staff are friendly and efficient. AND they make a great coffee!”


Financial Planning and Credit services are offered through Modoras Pty Ltd ABN 86 068 034 908. Australian Financial Services and Credit Licence No. 233209.
Accounting services are offered through Modoras Accounting (QLD) Pty Ltd ABN 81 601 145 215, Modoras Accounting (VIC) Pty Ltd ACN 145 368 850 and Modoras Accounting (SYD) Pty Ltd ABN 18 622 475 521

Copyright Modoras 2018. All Rights Reserved.