BizBuySell has revealed results of a survey of 1,700 business owners who have an interest in selling and more than 1,300 prospective small business buyers in a report titled The Demographics of U.S. Small Business Buyers & Sellers.  Among the key findings, only 29% of business owners planning to sell in the next five years are prepared for the sales process.  BizBuySell isn’t the first to make the claim that small business owners are underprepared when it comes to selling, this is a persistent issue with small businesses.  CNBC recently wrote an article on the subject, accurately describing the exit planning process for owners as “often-painstaking”.  Many small businesses struggle when a need to transition to a new owner arises, it is natural for entrepreneurs who have put in sweat and tears to build a company to become so embedded in the business that they are difficult to replace.  

The thought of exit planning can often prompt feelings of fear and stress, feelings that make the entire notion easier to ignore than deal with.  These emotions coupled with a busy schedule that requires an owner to make time to formulate a well rounded plan may make the task nearly impossible.  However, this doesn’t make the process any less important, especially if you want your business to live on well after you.

If you feel this way about exit planning, check out our post on Steps to Start Exit Planning or contact a professional to help you get started.  If you’re ready to sell your business but don’t know where to start, give us a call at (203) 772-3773 or submit a contact form for a free business evaluation so we can steer you in the right direction.  

Also note, the report does an excellent job at breaking down seller and buyer demographic information across gender, ethnicity, education and age.  The report summarizes related key findings and conclusions of interest to both buyers and sellers.  Download the full report here: