Certified Business Brokers
The Business Transfer Newsletter
January 2017
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Watch Your Language: A Texas Court Highlights Importance of Language In Non-Competes

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M&A and Business Brokerage Firm Since 1974

Close  >60% of the businesses we list vs. 38% Industry Average

Consistently sold businesses within 94.5% of appraised price

We specialize and are experts in the Texas market.

Closed approx. 2,000 business transactions In Texas.

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Selling Texas Companies Since 1974


Our monthly newsletters provide educational information about buying or selling a business, current economic conditions, and highlight some of our newest business-for-sale opportunities.


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The business sale process typically begins with an initial inquiry stage, during which owners try to get an idea of what their businesses are worth and whether selling makes sense. They are "sale curious" and have been thinking about it more than a time or two.

When a business is sold, big or small, taxes are inevitable. Three reasons that selling a business in the Trump presidency might be beneficial...h
ere's a look into Trump's proposed tax changes, and what they can mean for selling a business in the upcoming year.

Read the details on our website: Will Selling Your Business Get Alot Less Taxing?

Navigating The Business For Sale Environment

We understand that most people do not have time to monitor everything that is happening in the market. So, to make things easier, we have compiled a detailed report on last year's business sales and the current economic climate.
A record number of small businesses were bought and sold in America in 2016, topping 2015's totals by 8.6 percent and 2014's previous high by 4.6 percent. Will this momentum be sustained? According to Deloitte's year-end report "activity is poised to accelerate, perhaps significantly." Primary factors for the bullish outlook are stock prices at historic levels, interest rates... despite the forecast for an increase...remain near or at historic lows, an improving business environment, more qualified buyers on the market, and much improved financing options.
The following data shows a snapshot of 2016 market statistics for the Greater Houston Metro Area. A total of 66 U.S. metro areas were represented in a report by BizBuySell from data provided by Business Brokers. 

Ask The ExpertsQuestion Ask The Experts


I'm approaching retirement age and I'm thinking about selling my landscaping business this year. What should I concentrate on for preparing for the sale?
Beware, this is not one of those short answers.

This checklist outlines the most important variables specific to landscaping companies that will make your business a good catch in the marketplace. Some of the variables are the same for all industry types.
Build a management team - Your business is more valuable if you are not the chief cook and bottle washer.   If you have management / supervisory staff in place to run daily operations, your business will be much easier to sell.
Document your workers - Some buyers, whether individuals or other companies, may be ok with undocumented workers, others may not. You are in the best position if you can document all of your workers.
Improve retention of employees - Focus on developing programs that will foster long-term retention of your employees. Finding and keeping a steady workforce is a perennial problem in the industry. Your business will stick out in the crowd if you have a stable team.
Sign contracts with your client base - Yes, it is a hurdle, but it is worth the effort. Recurring, predictable revenue is the holy grail of revenue streams. Buyers love a steady customer base, especially if you have long-term contracts. Check with your attorney to ensure contracts are transferable to the buyer in the event of a sale.  
Clean up your accounts receivable - Having too much cash tied up in A/R may lower your company's valuation.  Sophisticated buyers consider this a drag on the company's growth. The longer the cash-flow cycle of your company, the more working capital a buyer must tie up in the business. You may want to talk with your late-paying customers, train them to pay on time or pre-bill them.
Polish up your billing methods - Pre-billing is ideal and increases the valuation of your company. Try to get as much of your client base as possible on pre-billed arrangements.
Build your commercial base - Landscaping contractors that focus on commercial work have much more value to buyers than those that primarily focus on residential business. However, commercial entities try to negotiate lower prices, which will cut into your profits.   Watch your margins.
Focus on maintenance and other repeat services - Lawn care and landscape maintenance companies receive higher multiples than construction-related landscaping businesses.
Update your fleet and equipment - Buyers do not want to inherit a backlog of maintenance problems or equipment costs.   The price goes down in the buyer's eyes while he's calculating what it would cost to bring the fleet up to date and to replace/repair equipment.   Keep your vehicles and equipment in tip top shape.   You will be in a better negotiating position.
Build dense routes - Dense routes minimize fuel, labor and other expenses, which will increase the value of your company.
Develop other services to mitigate the impact of seasonality.
Don't be an owner-driven operation. Build your business so anyone can run it. The more important you are to your business, the less your business will be worth. Additionally, building your company so anyone can run it vastly opens up the universe of buyers that can purchase the business.
Document and streamline your operations - Streamlining your operations and documenting procedures is like an instruction manual. It provides a smoother transition for a buyer.
Management Software - Talk about the holy grail! Online operations are becoming a must these days. For good reason. These programs are becoming the de facto operations manual. You can boost field service efficiency in scheduling and routing, GPS crew tracking and timesheets, handle quotes, manage customer data, manage billing, and more....on your laptop....wherever you go.  
*Landscaping services may be viewed as a discretionary expense by some; however, a 2015 survey by the National Association of Landscape Professionals (NALP) indicated that 84% of Americans believe in the importance of having a well-maintained yard, and most of them see the need to seek help from landscape professionals to have a "nicer yard."

Texas Economic News

We watch economic and market conditions compared to the rest of the country because these factors affect business value. The following articles were all published since our last newsletter.





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