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Main Street News September 2012



Pino Bacinello, CBI, M&AMI, CMEA, CSBA
Chairman of the IBBA

Chairman’s Message

pino-bacinelloGreetings,

As we transition to the fall, I hope you all had a good and prosperous summer.

The IBBA is almost completely transitioned to our new association management company, Meeting Expectations. I must say that our Executive Director Karl Kirsch, our Director of Operations Lynne Weil, and their staff have exceeded our expectations. The transition has been quite a task, but has been made easier and more bearable by their competence.

This year will be an expensive year from an administrative cost. This is a direct result of the fee overlap required to transition to a new management company and from our contractual obligations to Smith Bucklin. The good news is that your board and I believe we are now in a much better place to move into the future. In some situations, it is “pay now or pay later.” We believe it will be a cost savings in the long run.

Our ship is pointed in the right direction, and we believe the economy will show positive advances once the U.S. election is over. With all of us having felt the pinch world-wide, we know that tenacity is not only the key to surviving entrepreneurship, but it is also the key to surviving business brokerage!

In less than two months, our Annual General Meeting will be held on November 6th at 1pm at Bally’s Hotel and Casino, the day before the M&A Source Fall Conference begins. The room number and location of the meeting will be posted at the registration desk for the M&A Source Fall Conference. Also, please note we will also be holding the CBI exam November 9th during the conference at 1pm in Las Vegas Room 1 at Bally’s Hotel and Casino.

At its conference, The M&A Source will be celebrating its 20th anniversary November 7th to the 9th. This will be an opportunity for you to attend some great M&A Source classes and workshops. You will receive full credit for your CBI certification or recertification for both the courses and the conference. To commemorate their 20th anniversary and our renewed brand collaboration, M&A Source is offering IBBA members access to this conference and education for the same rates as M&A Source members.

We would like to extend our gratitude to Chet Walden and his team for making that happen. Of course, if you have some larger deals, the Middle Market Expo is a great opportunity to expose them to some qualified and deal-hungry PEGs.

I hope to see many of you there, and wish you all much success and great deal flow as we move into the fall and always!

 


IBBA Announces the Annual Meeting of the Members

As required in our Bylaws, an annual meeting of the general membership of the Association shall be held for the transaction of such business as may properly come before the meeting.

The 2012 Annual Meeting of the Members will be held November 6th at 1 pm at Bally’s Hotel and Casino located at 3645 Las Vegas Blvd South, Las Vegas, NV 89109, just one day prior to the M&A Source Fall Conference.

The room number and location of the meeting will be posted at the registration desk for the M&A Source Conference which is located on the Pacific Ballroom Level (2nd floor) of the South Tower of the hotel.

 


Karl Kirsch, CAE
Executive Director

Executive Director’s Message

Your Opinions Are Requested

karl-kirschYou should have received an email last week containing the IBBA Membership Survey. I hope that you will take the time to complete the survey, as it is another way you can directly have an influence on the future benefits and activities of your organization.

Your IBBA board and staff are continually looking for ways to make your investment in the organization even more valuable. We have completed an assessment of the IBBA benefits and are now looking to make them even better.

Regarding the existing benefits, we already know that the CBI designation is a very important offering of IBBA. For those of you interested in the CBI certification, don’t forget about the IBBA Educational Fall Summit, scheduled September 30th through October 3rd just steps away from the IBBA headquarters in the Buckhead financial district of Atlanta, GA.

The courses being offered are three of the most popular: #210, #220, and #221. This is a great opportunity to earn 32 credit hours from courses that are required to attain your CBI designation. Plus, this may be the last chance to take these courses before the next CBI exam, which will take place at the M&A Source Fall Conference, November 7th through 9th at the Bally’s Las Vegas Hotel and Casino. The actual exam day is Friday, November 9th from 1pm to 4pm.

For those of you who already have the CBI designation, you will be receiving in the next week or so a copy of your individual membership records showing how many continuing education credits you have towards your recertification. We are anticipating that this will result in many emails and questions from the membership, so please be patient with us as we work with each of you to make sure every member’s record is up-to-date.

We appreciate your help, and please don’t hesitate to contact any of your staff members here at the headquarters if you need assistance.

Best Regards,

 


Marcie Woolworth, Membership Committee Chair, CBI, Fellow of the IBBA
Joe Lindsey, Credentialing Committee Chair, CBI, M&AMI

Fellow of the IBBA Award

ibba-main-street-news-september-2012-fellow-ibba-awardFellow of the IBBA Award: what is it and what does it mean? The dictionary defines “fellow” as a member of a learned or scientific society (as in a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons), and as someone belonging to the same group, occupation, rank, or location. For purposes of the IBBA, both of those definitions apply; but more specifically, the Fellow award was designed to celebrate the contributions of loyal, long-time members of the IBBA. This highly coveted and lifetime award is available to CBI members who have met or exceeded the established criteria. The list of Fellows (shown below) is a veritable who’s who of our best and brightest members:

Andrew Cagnetta, Jr.George AbrahamMary Jane Dailey
Arne McDanielGeorge LanzaGeorge Lanza
Bernard SiegelGeorge PetrulisMike Adhikari
Bill WomackGlen CooperNancy Cofield
Bob WyattGreg KellsPatricia McDonald
Carl GrimesHal JankePhilip Steckler, III
Charles Broadwater, Jr.Henry HicksRichard Daigle
Charles EdmondsJ. Michael WoodRichard Haskel
Chet WaldenJack SandersRichard Mowrey
Clem Barrere, Jr.James TownRobert Sunderman
Clyth MacLeodJanice StaropoliRoger Rumble
Connie WomackJeff GuinnRonald Chemak
Cornelius “CJ” HarrisJeff JonesRonald Hottes
Cress Diglio, Sr.Jerry ClarkRonald Johnson
Darrell ArneJerry Cofield, Jr.Russ Bieber
Dolliver FrederickJim AfinowichSandra Newkham
Don HankinsJohn JohnsonSara Burden
Don McIverJohn ZayacScott Bushkie
Donald CumminsKeith ChapmanShawn Sanborn
Dora LanzaKeith McLeodStacy Alario
Edward PendarvisKen StebbinsSuzanne De Lucia
Edward Telling, JrKenneth OppeltzTed Rickenbacher
Eugene GottesmanKevin DempseyThomas Whipple
Fred JagerLen KrickTom West
G.B. “Nick” NicholsonLeon NiemannWalter Lipski
Gary JohnsonLinda PurcellWarren Burkholder
Gary PapayMarcie WoolworthWilliam Gibson

Besides being successful professionals who have withstood the tests of time, a common trait of these Fellows is that they are givers. Each one, armed with the best of intentions, has contributed time and energy to serve our association for the betterment of our members.

The criteria for consideration include:

  1. Member of the association for ten (10) years or longer
  2. CBI in good standing
  3. Significant contribution to the association defined as any two (2) of the following:
    1. At least one term on the Board of Directors
    2. Committee Chairperson (as defined by the Board of Directors)
    3. Presenter of at least two (2) conference workshops
    4. Instructor of at least two (2) IBBA educational courses, conference or affiliate meetings
    5. Content Expert in writing an IBBA educational course
    6. Has completed 2nd recertification of the CBI, and is in at least the 7th year of being a CBI

Based on our current records, the list shown above is believed to be complete. However, that doesn’t mean that our records are infallible. If you know of someone (yourself included) who earned the Fellow award but whose name is not on the list, please let us know.

If you would like to be considered as a candidate to receive this award and have your name added to the list of distinguished and celebrated members, please contact us.

Marcie R. Woolworth, CBI, Fellow of the IBBA
marcie@woolworthandcompany.com
(970) 663-9400

Maggie Nicholson, Education & Certification Manager
mnicholson@ibba.org
(404) 477-5821

Joe Lindsey, CBI, M&AMI
joelindsey@daileyresources.com
(817) 663-0001

 


Chet Walden, Chair, CBI, BCI, M&AMI, FIBBA
Chairman of the M&A Source

M&A Source Chairman’s Message

chet-waldenHave you played golf in Las Vegas before?

Whether you’re a scratch golfer or a 100’s player, the experience is remarkable. The M&A Source is planning a casual golf “tournament” for Saturday, November 10th. We’ve planned for lots of prizes (you know there will be lots of laughs), and above all, the opportunity to become better acquainted with your fellow association members.

We’re attempting now to get an idea of how many players are committed. Once this number is determined, Alan Tronson will set the course and deliver the details to everyone. Remember, you can rent clubs at the course so you don’t have to drag them through airports.

Sign up with Meeting Expectations today, or indicate your interest when you register for the conference, and top off your stay in Vegas with a fun filled day with new friends and old friends!

See you in Vegas!

 


Scott Bushkie, CBI, M&AMI
Marketing Committee Chair

Marketing Committee Update

bushkie
The Marketing Committee continues to work on the Market Pulse Survey which it hopes over time will continue to build the brand of IBBA, M&A Source and each of its members. Thank you to everyone who took the survey in July. Each respondent was entered to win a prize, and that winner this quarter was Gary Gunderson, who was given an iPad for taking the survey! Congratulations to Gary, and we hope to get even more responses in October.

Only with your help will we be able to build our brands to be more recognizable, bringing more business to each of you, enhancing the status of the CBI and M&AMI and helping each of you build a more successful and sustainable business.

Click here for the executive summary of the results. I think you will find some of the stats very interesting, and many of the answers will help you in your business today.

If you have not seen the video of the conference yet, make sure you take a look, and please forward the link to anyone who is not currently a member to show the value of our great association.

 


Edwin Lee, CBI, CPA, CFA
Founder & CEO, BridgeWay Business Builder and Broker Co. Ltd.

Member Spotlight

edwin-leeI started my company in 2001 after being laid-off as an investment banker from Credit Suisse First Boston after September 11th. I began working in Hong Kong in 1997 and got transferred to the New York headquarters in 2001. I started my company with about US $250,000 in savings after being laid off. I thought I wanted to start a business. I decided to go back to Hong Kong and buy an existing business. I found out that no one was doing business brokerage in Hong Kong. So, I decided to become the first business broker in town to buy and sell small businesses, and focused exclusively on main street deals. Our average deal size in Hong Kong is about US $80,000. We have sold 1,064 businesses to date.

Our company is not only a business brokerage. We are also a business builder. We have changed our name from Hong Kong Business Intermediary to BridgeWay Business Builder and Broker to reflect the nature of our business. Between 2001 and 2006, we focused mainly in business brokerage. In 2006, I found out that many business sellers had nothing to do after selling their businesses. I decided to become a business builder by hiring them to join our company on a full-time basis, to build businesses to be resold to entrepreneurs. So now, we are selling second-hand businesses as brokers and “first-hand” businesses as builders. We have built 69 businesses as of today. We build the business with a sole objective to sell them to new entrepreneurs. We provide them with one year of training to take over the business. If they are not comfortable with running the business, they can give it back to us after one year and get a partial refund.

In Hong Kong, real estate is very expensive. A typical 600 square-foot commercial shop in Hong Kong costs an average of US $3,000,000 to $5,000,000. So, owning property is vital to any business’ survival. In 2008, we decided to go into the commercial real estate market. Rather than leasing the premises, we decided to focus all of our resources into buying the properties and enhancing value to the property.

What we are doing now is like the classic Monopoly board game; we buy the property, build the business, sell the business, and sell the property in order to make profit. A property with a prosperous business on the premise makes the property worth more. Most of our profit now is from selling the property. However, what we are known for is our business brokerage platform.

In the coming year, we will continue to focus on brokering and building businesses. In Hong Kong, it’s hard to be a billionaire as a business broker. It’s much easier if we are a major property player who can build a prosperous business to enhance value of commercial properties in Hong Kong.

If I were to give advice to other brokers or intermediaries, I would advise them to not just be a broker. Business brokerage is only a platform; build something on top of it. Look at the Forbes 50 list, do whatever the richest do, and use business brokerage as a platform to achieve that faster.

My involvement in the IBBA is great. It gives me a lot of insight as to how others do business brokerage. I wish we could learn more from each other and learn how others prosper in their own field. It’s a very good sharing experience.

Best Regards,

 


Steve Wain, CBI, M&AMI
IBBA Technology Committee Chair

Technology Committee Update

Setting Up A Modern Brokerage Practice: Part 2

wainLast month, we reviewed some of the new gadgets you could add into your everyday practice. This will enable you to be more productive and provide your clients with a better experience in working with you and your firm. This month, I’ll review some additional tech areas that you can benefit from using.

Before I discuss some of the new items, I want to preface that each of these items meet the objectives of being both easily accessible and highly affordable. In our industry, given the high degree of sole practitioners, each individual I speak to understands the ‘costs’ of being a business broker and intermediary. Unlike being an ’employee’, making your ends meet month-to-month is crucial to the long term viability of your success.

The cost of joining our profession consists of both physical and opportunity costs, as loss of routine and constant income is an issue we’ve all faced at some point, or likely still do. The products in this article meet the two objectives outlined. In addition, they address cost in two ways. First, they truly are inexpensive from a dollar perspective – you’re not going to have to break the bank to get them. Second, their introduction into your practice will lower your effective costs of operation. The combination of both will be cash-flow positive to you sooner than later and help grow your practice.

This month, we are going to review two software applications, and one combination hardware/software application that can be effective for data collection during your discussions with clients, or in the field when you are gathering information. Both of these software applications happen to run on the iPad. If you have an Android tablet, there may also be solutions like these. For those of you headed to the IBBA Educational Fall Summit at the end of this month in Atlanta, these will help you take notes and get ready for your CBI exam!

Notability

The first application is called Notability, which allows you to truly take note-taking to a higher level. As an intermediary, I know that when I’m in the initial stages of meeting my clients, there is an enormous amount of data gathering required to both document the business and gain a good understanding to be able to represent them effectively to buyers. The business owner is always eager to share information with you once they’ve mentally committed to both you and the process of a business sale. The amount of information they provide to you can be as little or as much as you ask from them. To me, the more information I gather and understand about a business and the seller, the easier it is to sell the business.

Figure 1 - You can write or draw anything, anywhere
Figure 1 – You can write or draw anything, anywhere

Notability costs less than $5. Not bad when you consider that if a similar application (if there could have been one) was introduced just ten years ago, it would have cost hundreds of dollars, if not more, and likely come with less functionality.

Notability allows you to do a myriad of tasks, but what I find most helpful is its combination note taking and recording. How often are you pressed to write important information down on paper, only to miss another pertinent point because the owner keeps on talking?

Notability has the functionality to allow you to record any meeting you have and simultaneously record notes along the way. Because of the method of data collection, when you later review your notes, you can simply ‘point’ to a note, and the audio conversation will play from that point on.

That frees you up to listen and develop insight into what is being said at that moment. The likely outcome is you will ask more pointed questions and save yourself from either calling up for additional clarification or having another meeting. Either way, you are saving time.

Figure 2 - You can also review and edit documents graphically
Figure 2 – You can also review and edit documents graphically

With Notability, you can either type your notes on the embedded iPad keyboard, or write them using a capacitive pen (you can’t use normal pens on an iPad, iPhone, or Android. Look up iPad stylus for more information), or that other pointing device you always carry with you— your finger.

To make life even simpler, you can automatically transfer these notes to your PC or Mac along with the audio. The audio-note locating capability though only works effectively when you are in the iPad. Notability even has the ability to transfer via Dropbox, so you can take a note and then transfer them to others in your office without even going back to the office. You can even take notes with the iPad screen off, saving battery. I’ve taken recording sessions for hours, and opened up the iPad to jot something down in Notability when needed and had over 90% battery life left.

As a final note, another good product like Notability is called Audionote, which has much of the same note/audio capability but lacks some of the drawing options of Notability. Either product will make you more effective.

FormConnect

The second software product is called FormConnect. In many cases, taking down information is tedious and repetitive, especially with certain types of information such as P&L and balance sheet items, sales figures, add-backs, etc. The numbers may change from client to client but the specific data items usually do not. I know that during interviews, I’m always trying to get some preliminary information that will help me evaluate the salability of the company and whether a business owner or shareholders are earnest regarding the sale. Using a product like FormConnect gives me capacity to collect data and use it later in programs like Excel or my confidential information memorandums.

Figure 3 - Collect data and keep a mini database of all records directly on your iPad
Figure 3 – Collect data and keep a mini database of all records directly on your iPad

To give some insight into this product, consider that for many organizations around the world, collecting data, scrubbing it, and then storing it into a database is time consuming, riddled with logistic complexities, and is not standardized. To that end, many ‘form companies’ have products that can collect data and store it (for example) in an Oracle database, use a proprietary form engine to help create easy-to-use and goodlooking forms, have print engines to make the distribution of the reports simpler, etc.

Although things are changing, much like tech always does, the forms industry has always been a relatively higher priced solution. FormConnect is less than $10 and could be one of the easiest investment decisions you make. There are other form products, and some of them are free, but I’ve found this product to be very reliable, flexible, and easy to use and set up. You don’t need a PhD in computer science to use it.

FormConnect allows you to build a form right on your iPad that collects key data you want to gather. You can design it anyway you like, and make it look easy for you to enter data, as well as good for printing if say, you wanted to give a copy to your client. Yes, you will have to think about what data is needed, but it’s good to know that each form can always be easily updated to correct errors, collect new data that you missed or is new, and redesign the layout without the use of any technical resource, even if you happen to be on the train traveling to your office in downtown Chicago.

Figure 4 - You can even have multi-page forms (BS and P&L) that you can swipe to go between pages, insert pictures, collect signatures, and lock them to prevent changes
Figure 4 – You can even have multi-page forms (BS and P&L) that you can swipe to go between pages, insert pictures, collect signatures, and lock them to prevent changes

FormConnect is not just a pretty face in that it collects data. It also is a fantastic conduit for transferring data. Transferring can come in two ways; either as a report of the information collected, or as individual data fields that can be imported into Excel. Think about the possibilities. You can be on site with your prospect, do a preliminary review of their P&L, ask some questions about their prospective add-backs, and enter/mark the information on your iPad, and then have it populate your office PC without missing a beat. Selling your client’s warehouse space as part of the sale of the business? While you are entering their building information, take a picture of the warehouse right on the form. Can’t write all the information down on their 1165 or 4562 forms fast enough? Take a picture (with their permission of course) of the sheet and transcribe it after the meeting.

FormConnect can print reports, as seen on the screen (forms can be bigger than the screen, just scroll down) in a PDF automatically, or the data can be transferred in an XML or CSV format to be read easily by Excel (don’t worry about the initials, just know that Excel can capture all the discrete data and format it in columns for you to use).

In one of the companies I sit on the Board with, they were able to design, create, and deploy a system for data collection for their new division within two weeks, and cut their estimated cost of IT startup by over 97%. Their results are as good, if not better than expected, and information turnaround is very quick.

Like Notability, the data can be easily transferred to a PC through free vehicles like Dropbox.

LiveScribe Echo Pen

The last item is a combination hardware and software product the acts in some capacity just like Notability and FormConnect. It is called the LiveScribe Echo pen. Unlike the two previous software solutions, Echo is a real pen. Not a normal pen, mind you, but a pen that is very intelligent.

Although you will pay about $110 – $180 to get this ‘pen’, for some of you it may be really worth it. LiveScribe’s Echo pen allows you take notes on paper, just like you normally do. Write as much or as little as you like. Write anywhere you like on the page. LiveScribe Echo records the audio for your entire session and correlates the voice with the writing you are doing.

Figure 5 - LiveScribe Echo Pen taking notes
Figure 5 – LiveScribe Echo Pen taking notes

How does that work? Well, it’s not just the pen that’s intelligent, it’s actually teamed up with some smart paper too. When you write something down on paper that you buy directly from LiveScribe (they have a lot of different versions of paper you can acquire – plain sheets, notebooks, sticky pads etc), the paper has a special matrix, barely visible on the page. As you write, EchoTM is keeping track of where you are on the paper and where in the voice recording you are.

Later, when you are reviewing your notes, if you touch the EchoTM pen to the paper, whatever audio was recorded when you wrote that part of the paper will begin to play on the speaker located in the pen. You can also attach a headset to listen privately or transfer the entire note and audio recording to the PC. When I say transfer the note to the PC, I mean transfer AS IS, with drawings, notes in margins, etc. You can then review them on the PC. But don’t worry about not having enough space. Even the lowest memory pen (2GB, but you can also get a 4GB or 8GB version) can store enough audio for over 200 hours of note taking.

The pen is easy to hold, and you can take notes for many hours without recharging. Many users have already contributed pre-printed forms that you can download and use if you find it effective. My partner Susan uses this all the time, and it helps her collect information and review it whenever she meets with clients and prospects.

Whatever the situation, taking notes and collecting information is the key in our business. Making sure of facts and having access to financial data that can be easily transferred or transcribed for later use, in a Teaser or CIM, can help eliminate errors, increase your available time, and lead to positive cash-flow!

Next month we will introduce an additional application and tackle the age old question (I call it that because I’m asked this question EVERY conference by many people) of CRM systems and what’s good, what’s not, and why you should use it.

Have a great month!

 


George D. Abraham, Fellow of the IBBA
Business Evaluation Systems

Member Spotlight

george-abrahamMy grandfather on my mother’s side of the family started the first business in the town where I grew up and still live. All three of his sons and one of his three daughters also started businesses here. My grandfather from my father’s side of the family was in the grocery business, and my father, along with two of his three sisters, started a business. This is where my entrepreneurial side started. I was born to be an entrepreneur.

I opened my first business after college at the age of 23 and a couple of years later, sold it and became a business broker. That was 39 years ago.

The challenge of valuing a business when I started was much greater than it is today, as there were no business valuation books, no IBBA or professional appraisal organizations, so we were left with making up our own methods. It has always been my belief that a business must be priced right before it is going to sell, so as a business broker, this challenge led me into business appraisal. To me, there were so many variables in a business that would either contribute to or deplete the value, only a computer could handle the task. In 1986, the Business Evaluation Systems software program was developed. To my knowledge, it was the first program to value a business. Several years later, I sold it to John Wiley and Sons business valuation division which later became ValuSource, which still sells the program today.

During this time, I helped start the Texas Association of Business Brokers (TABB), was the second Houston Chapter President, and helped open the other Texas chapters. I was later elected the third State President. During this time, we met with several business brokers around the country one weekend in a hotel in Austin, Texas to discuss starting a national association which became IBBA. I also spent two terms as the State Vice President of Education, and we developed the courses to qualify for the “Certified Business Broker” designation, and later turned it over to the IBBA to eventually become the “Certified Business Intermediary” designation. This was an extremely exciting time in my life.

I met so many brilliant and wonderful friends around the country from marketing my business valuation software program and working with the IBBA, where I gained an education that was invaluable. I have attended almost all of the conferences over the years and each time walked away with knowledge that kept me up to date with the industry.

Recommendations for Fellow Brokers:

  • I realize the industry is depressed now as the uncertainty in the economy has made owners reluctant to sell, but it will change! These owners are baby boomers, and age is no longer on their side.
  • Learn everything you can at the IBBA conferences and, most importantly, meet some good positive friends that aren’t afraid to exchange knowledge and ideas with you in the future.
  • Never stop marketing yourself. Join everything that will help you meet owners, attorneys and accountants that can refer you.
  • Have as much fun as I have!

 


Clyth MacLeod, Lifetime CBI

News and Views

Value vs. Price

clyth-macleodValue is one thing. Price is a different thing.

We appraise every business we list so that the owner knows the “most probable selling price.” Often, we will take the opportunity to the market at a higher price to allow for a “premium buyer.”

Many businesses we sell will settle at more, or less, than the appraised value. This may result from the different motivations and negotiating skills of the parties. A seller compelled to sell urgently due to illness, for example, may not maximize the price received because we are unable to carry out a full marketing program.

Conversely, a buyer may pay top dollar because the business offers special benefits for that particular buyer, such as location.

Apart from motivations and negotiating skills, the deal structure can greatly influence price:

  • Finance: an old saying is “you can name the price, if I can name the terms.” With New Zealand banks still bloody-minded about lending for business purchases on reasonable terms and conditions, we are finding vendor finance more common than in the past. This can be a win-win for the parties.The buyer can secure a larger business, and the seller can receive a better return by investing in something he/she knows.
  • Earn-outs have become increasingly common in some sectors. With these parts of the purchase, price is withheld for a period of time, subject to certain sales or profit targets being met.
  • Employment, or on-going consultancy, can also affect price. A business owner may wish to “cash out,” but be happy to continue working for the new owner on a part-time or full-time basis, or provide consultancy services. These arrangements can provide security for the new owner (e.g. retaining relationships) plus cash-flow and employment for the exiting party.

A well-thought out deal structure can benefit everyone–maximizing price for the seller, minimizing risk for the purchaser, and rewarding the business broker for a successful transaction.

 


Monty Walker, CBI, CPA, BCB
Walker Business Advisory Services

Meet Your Board Member: Monty Walker

walkerIn February 1997, Monty became aware of the business intermediation practice arena when a gentleman came to his office, introduced himself as a business intermediary and asked if he could discuss a couple of businesses he represented. At the time, Monty worked for a private investment trust based in Dallas, TX serving as the organization’s CFO. He played a major role in the organization’s M&A activities and was accustomed to working in concert with other private groups to invest in and often play an operational role in various business ventures. Although the businesses represented by this business intermediary were not the type of opportunities which would be of interest to Monty’s employer, unbeknownst to him at the time, his meeting with the business intermediary set in motion the next stage of Monty’s career.

In May 1997, Monty was scheduled to leave his post with the investment trust. He had decided to go into private practice to focus on providing business advisory services to family businesses. As a result of his meeting with the business intermediary, he ended up purchasing two businesses represented by the business intermediary. In August 1997, the intermediary contacted Monty and asked if he could take a look at one of his deals that was about to fall apart. He was impressed with the way Monty structured his acquisitions, and he thought Monty might be able to help him with his deal. To make a long story short, the problem was identified and resolved. The business intermediary received his commission and Monty started on the path leading him to where he is today.

Today, Monty practices nationally with a focus on providing business transition planning and transaction support services to business entrepreneurs. He works with business sellers, business buyers and their various advisors, such as business intermediaries, accountants and attorneys, to manage the unique financial, tax, planning and procedural matters associated with buying and selling a business.

In August 1997, after helping the business intermediary with his deal, Monty was introduced to the Texas Association of Business Brokers (TABB) and the IBBA. He joined the organizations, and began participating in their activities, conferences, and education courses. He believes that to receive you must be willing to give. You can only get as much from an organization as you and the other members are willing to give. Monty quickly learned that he felt he could be of most benefit to the IBBA and its members by participating in the education program. Over the years, Monty has helped develop a number of courses, revise other courses, as well as prepare and present numerous workshops.

Monty knows his success does not come solely on his own merits. Monty’s success has come as a result of many different people believing in him and giving him an opportunity to work with them on their business deals. Having knowledge, ability, willingness to work, etc.—these are only a part of the puzzle.

It is important to get your foot in the door so you can prove yourself, and Monty has been provided that opportunity from a number of different business intermediaries with many of them being members of the IBBA. Monty drives this point home to others. Do not look solely upon yourself and your abilities for success. Develop strong relationships and join organizations such as the IBBA, because the people you meet will be instrumental in your ultimate success.

Monty’s plan for the future is to continue his work in the business transfer industry. He has a passion for helping entrepreneurs. Monty feels lucky to be able to have a career in which he truly enjoys going to work each day. He wants to continue growing in knowledge and improving his own abilities because his self-improvement will only lead him to being a better advisor. Monty knows the IBBA will continue to play a part in his ongoing professional development.

 


Keith McLeod, CBI
IBBA Newsletter Editor
keith@businesscentre.net

From the Editor’s Desk

keith-mcleodDr. Edwin Lee and Clyth MacLeod in this issue of our newsletter underscore the “international” in the International Business Brokers Association, reporting from Hong Kong and New Zealand. Edwin offers a new model for brokers and intermediaries to consider, adding a new service, and highlights the differences each of us bring to our association. I am especially grateful to Edwin because he was the one who contacted me to become a candidate for the IBBA Board of Directors. Clyth is a long-time friend and hearing his views is a benefit of being a member of the IBBA. George Abraham, featured in the Member Spotlight, is an IBBA veteran and has been practicing since before our association was launched. Like Edwin, he developed an ancillary service, valuations, to his business brokerage firm and has thrived.

Marcie Woolworth and Joe Lindsey highlight the Fellows honor and the steps to becoming one. Read their article and see if you are a candidate to add this distinction to your industry resume. Scott Bushkie invites you to visit the videos that were produced at our last conference, and discusses the ongoing IBBA Quarterly Market Pulse Survey that is so important to our association. Scott’s survey, completed for our newsletter’s release as an attachment, is crucial for narrowing and focusing your efforts to acquire better clients. Be sure to visit Steve Wain’s marvelous essay on technology tools to enhance your practice. I remember just a few years ago Fred Zirkle was our Technology Chairman and told us of new tools we should be using called “computers” and “emails.” He established an edict from the board of directors that all members should establish emails because the association would no longer be doing mailings! How the world has changed.

Last month I spoke about gravity and defining it differently for our industry – the ability to obtain clients while we are sleeping and doing other activities. Here are a number of techniques I use and have used:

  • Publish a book – many brokers are familiar with my value-based publication of interviews with Tom West, Darrell Fouts and Clyth MacLeod, and Ten Steps to Create a Six Figure Income and More.
  • Publish articles in the IBBA Newsletter.
  • Submit articles to other industry publications – BizBuySell and other online industry publications.
  • Submit a buying/selling article to other industry publications, adjusting your pitch to each industry. This creates an opportunity for long distant consulting or referral income to local brokers in the responder’s area.
  • Respond to authors of business columns or articles.
  • Write a letter to the editor of your local daily paper.
  • Be a source for your paper’s Business Editor.
  • Do a series of interviews of community and business leaders.
  • Teach a class or break-out session for monthly industry meetings and conferences.
  • Teach at your local real estate school, university, or college.
  • Speak to Rotary, Kiwanis, local Chamber of Commerce and breakfast clubs. Today as I prepare your newsletter, a client who I previously sold his CPA practice, called and asked if I would speak to other CPAs and accountants on how to sell their practice at their monthly meeting. I agreed and thanked him for thinking of me. He is allowing me to be the candidate to not only sell their practice, but for any of their clients as well who are entertaining the idea of selling their business. It occurs to me every time we sell a business we should write an article or speak to a local or national firm highlighting our successful transaction for that member of their industry.
  • Do a local radio or TV program or show.
  • Produce products – pamphlets, audio cassettes, CDs, or videotapes.
  • Services that do mailings – Main Source, Michael Mark’s service, and companies making phone calls.
  • I drafted Finding Value in Chaos, an article of 20+ business tips in our recession and gave it to hundreds. Request a copy and I’ll email it to you.
  • Participate in community organizations – I created a Dystonia Support Group, Tucson Orienteering Club, Hospice Foundation, and Tucson Police Foundation.

Do you have any ideas I didn’t mention? Let me know!

 


The Front Line Where the Battles and Tactics Occur to Put Deals Together

front-line-put-deals-togetherBoard members were sent an email asking how they succeed in obtaining listings. Here are a few of their responses:

Chet Walden, CBI, BCI, M&AMI
We do several different things that help us get listings. Here are a few:

  • Wine and Cheese receptions in our offices for CPAs, bankers, and attorneys
  • We utilize a telemarketing person who follows up on our mailers *most successful*
  • Seminars to professional groups
  • Network and offer to make presentations to the group

Gary Papay, M&AMI
We use referrals, direct mail, email marketing campaign (Mike Marks), and I do one or two seminars per year. In addition, we live by the 3 P’s principle: patience, persistence, and prayer. Right now we have a heavy emphasis on prayer as it has been a rough ride for the past 20 months or so!

This section is available for members to share their recent successes, unique deal situations, and strategies employed to successfully close a transaction. Please email your write-up to keith@businesscentre.net and we will feature it in our next newsletter.

 


IBBA Canada Fall Conference

Time is fast approaching!

We have full details for the Victoria 2012, our 4-day educational event and conference being held October 31 through November 3 in beautiful Victoria, British Columbia. Visit the conference website to learn about the event and to register 2012 Fall Conference.

2 important dates to remember:

Hotel room rate offered for early booking ends
September 28, 2012

Discounted rate for the registration ends
September 30, 2012