MESSAGE FROM THE PARTNERS
With so much buyer and seller activity, physical meetings between the parties are on the rise. Aside from sticking to distancing guidelines, the other thing to be conscious of is your conduct at the meeting.
The initial meeting is like a first date. It is the first impression each side will make of the other. The way that you behave and interact with the other side is critical to the momentum of any deal.
Just this week, one of our team was facilitating a meeting with a vendor and interested party of an off-market opportunity, about half an hour in, the prospective buyer said, ‘I’ll give you $200,000 walk-in walk-out.’ The business is valued over $1,000,000… needless to say, the meeting didn’t go on for much longer and the vendor now no longer wants to negotiate with this person. Even though the prospective buyer was just ‘testing the waters’, he has ruined any chance of acquiring this amazing business.
The above scenario is a perfect example of why these meetings should only be focused on financial and operational questions, keep the offer conversations between you and the broker to ensure emotion is left out of the process and a positive relationship will remain with both parties in the event an offer is accepted.
The best thing to do is to come to your first meeting prepared with questions. We see a lot of sellers and buyers turn up and “wing” it. For the meeting to be as meaningful as possible, think about your objective, what do you want to take away from the meeting.
A seller can also ask a lot of questions about the buyer, such as what are their intentions with the business? How do they hope to grow the business? What strengths can they bring to the business? Etc.
Questions help build familiarity, which helps build confidence. Come armed with questions and make the most of the first meeting. Don’t be afraid to go over time if you haven’t reached your objectives or asked all of your questions.
Happy buying and selling!
The VBA Team
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