Sales and Acquisitions
If only it were as easy as signing a Sale and Purchase Agreement and getting on with things. If you are purchasing you must pay attention to various factors to ensure you are not buying a dud; primarily though you should consider your motivation behind it.
You probably have to grow any practice for it to make financial sense, so there’s no point buying unless you want to grow a business.
We can find out the commercial reality of making it worthwhile, and we can plan the most tax efficient route. That’s unusual; most advisors only consider the most straightforward points of entry. However, as with many areas of life, the path of least resistance in business sales and acquisitions usually isn’t the one that’s going to serve your interests.
Accountants tend to do what they’re told in practice sales, and this can have unfortunate mathematical consequences. Unless you know about tax strategy, you could easily sign away tens or hundreds of thousands of pounds needlessly.
Mr M was negotiating with a corporate that was buying him out. It had a team of expert lawyers, who made their offer, and said that’s the way they do things.
It was the first time Mr M had sold a practice, so he felt unfavourably pitched in terms of expertise, and was carried along by the wave of activity and expectation.
His accountant, doing nothing wrong, told him the precise tax bill based upon the method instructed, but he came to us and we suggested an alternative sale structure, with no downside for either party.
This saved Mr M more than £200k in tax.
There is so much you can do for your future wealth by planning and executing the right acquisition, and then deploying a long term business plan to work your practice up to the maximum sale value when you exit. The wrong purchase can quickly turn into a rod for your own back.
The earlier you start thinking long term, the easier it is. With a £1m+ business easily costing £60-70k in debt repayment, you’re going to have to hit the ground running, and that means your business needs a growth plan, which our multidisciplinary team of strategists, marketers and accountants can help with.
Mr D was looking to purchase his first practice.
The seller had a traditional accountant who wished to structure the sale in the manner most favourable to his client, however, we highlighted an opportunity to the accountant where we would pay £50k extra but obtain £100k tax relief for our client, a saving which would have been inaccessible otherwise.
Crucially, Mr D then reinvested his savings into a sustained marketing program with Hive and has doubled his turnover in 18 months.
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If you are buying or selling a practice we can undertake a financial analysis as well as a market analysis to investigate growth capabilities.
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