Selling a trucking business should be a rewarding experience, but it may not always be a flattering one. Sellers should expect a few humbling or slightly uncomfortable moments along the way. Allowing these details to make you defensive or overly upset can derail a deal for you and your buyer. By knowing what to expect beforehand – and realizing that some of your shortfalls may be viewed as opportunities to the right buyer – you can let any surprises slide off your back. When your thinking isn’t clouded by your emotions, the path to the closing table often becomes a lot clearer.
Put Yourself in the Buyer’s Shoes
From negotiations through due diligence, buyers will dredge up less than flattering details about your transportation logistics business. They will dissect everything from your management style to your profits – or lack thereof. They will naturally be somewhat suspicious of any information you provide. It’s easy for sellers to take this as a personal attack, but try imagining yourself in the buyer’s position. If you were making a substantial financial investment, wouldn’t you want to uncover and confirm details that will affect the profitability of your purchase?
When you buy a home, you expect to be provided with details like an accurate appraisal, termite inspection report, and background check for any liens against the property. You’re not trying to make a statement about the owner or the house – if you didn’t see value in the property you wouldn’t be analyzing it, right? You’re just trying to cover all your bases so that, hopefully, your purchase goes smoothly. Whether it’s for a home or a flatbed trucking business, a smooth sale is beneficial to both parties.
Accentuating the Positive
In some cases, the details that you worry are unfavorable may actually work in your favor. Aspects like thin profits can actually attract the right buyer. Maybe you did an excellent job of establishing your company’s good name and winning customers in your region, but you currently don’t have the necessary cash flow to expand. A buyer with the capabilities to grow your business will may be able to offer a higher price.
Buyers mean you no disrespect. Getting overly defensive or ultra-sensitive will confuse a buyer, waste their time, and probably send them packing. No matter what the state of your company, putting your trucking or logistics business for sale will be an emotional rollercoaster. If you expect and accept it, it won’t affect you nearly as much. Meanwhile, it may help to have a third party transaction advisor that specializes in the transportation industry to assist you with the sale.