Business sale confidentiality is essential for a successful business sale. It is imperative that the seller insists on getting a signed non-disclosure agreement (NDA) from all interested parties to the sale of their business. Failing to do so can lead to negative and avoidable outcomes that can not only torpedo the sale of the business but can harm the continued operations and income of the business.
Why is business sale confidentiality so important?
Business sale confidentiality is important because you can command a high price for your company by preserving the valuable aspects of your business such as your customer base, relationships to reliable vendors, experience employees, and market share.
Business sellers trying to sell their business can be hampered by a breach of confidentiality. People will often talk about your business if they hear that you want to sell it. This is when rumors begin to spread quickly.
Negative consequences of not maintaining business sale confidentiality
Human nature is to resist change. Your employees may feel anxious about the future and start to hear rumors. Your employees may begin to look for new jobs, and share their concerns about the sale of your business with customers. This could cause a negative reaction, and customers may look for other businesses to work with. Customers and employees leaving can result in a decrease in sales, which will cause a dip in your financials. This could lead to a loss of revenue that buyers may question.
Competing businesses may use your sale against you. Prospective buyers might be hesitant to purchase your business if they feel that sensitive information was shared with them. These events can cause irreparable damage to your business and make it less valuable for you as a potential buyer. What can you do to minimize the risk?
Silence is golden
Unless absolutely necessary, do not tell anyone that you are selling. This applies to customers, employees, and vendors. Only disclose this information to your advisors, such as your accountant, financial planner, and business broker. It’s impossible to predict what could happen before ownership is transferred. This will cause panic among employees and can lead to stress. Once the sale is complete, you should only inform your employees, vendors, or customers about the sale.
A business broker can tell potential sellers what questions they should ask in order to find out if they are serious or just curious. Potentially curious prospects who are very interested in gossip and are very nosy are the most likely to cause a breach of confidentiality. A seasoned broker, can help you distinguish the serious buyers and the curious. This will save you time and money.
It is better to say less than more for business sale confidentiality. Don’t divulge information too quickly. Your marketing materials should be simple. The package should allow buyers to make a decision about whether or not they wish to move on to the next stage. You must ensure that confidential information you share is not used against you or your competitors. Meter your confidential information to the buyer. Let them earn the information as you proceed towards a final sale.
Use Confidentiality Agreements
When selling your business, a confidentiality agreement, also known by the non-disclosure arrangement (NDA), should be prepared. For business sale confidentiality, this legally binding document details the key terms of confidentiality. A good buyer will understand that confidentiality agreements are a common practice in the business world.
Confidentiality agreements will ensure that potential buyers do not disclose your intention to sell your business or any other sensitive information about your business. They will also provide legal protections in the event that the buyer does.
Business Sale Confidentiality: How We Can Help
Mission Peak Brokers knows that the sale of a business depends heavily on professionalism and confidentiality. We have succeeded in selling even the most well-known companies without any public disclosure. Our professional business brokers can help keep your sale secretive among key stakeholders. Sellers will have peace of mind knowing that the confidential advice is handled with professionalism and respect. Contact us today.