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Small businesses don't stay small on purpose. And the marketplace for small to midsize businesses is messy. Listen in on conversations happening around the Permanent Equity house about private equity, investing, buying, selling, managing, & operating small businesses, and more. The first 40 episodes are the Messy Marketplace audiobook. Having peeked behind the curtain at over 10,000 companies, this expanded audiobook-podcast aims to demystify the buyers, the process, and the inevitable emoti ...
 
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Permanent Equity has published our 2022 Annual Letter. This conversation with Brent Beshore, Tim Hanson, & Mark Brooks dives deeper into some of the themes and topics explored in the letter: Lessons learned from 15 years of buying and operating small businesses. Read the full letter here: https://www.permanentequity.com/letters Contents: 0:00 Intro…
 
Audio Essay - There are thousands of service vendors ready to “solve your small business problems,” and most of them are awful. Small businesses are frequently choosing from a combination of new and subpar options, often without much guidance. Selection bias is real: the best and most experienced typically don’t work on smaller accounts. Here's how…
 
Brent & Mark sit down with David to discuss Rule #1 in the Permanent Equity Approach to stewarding companies that care what happens next. It's both essential and aspirational. Also Brent makes repeated ginger jokes (Mark & David both have red hair) and Mark explains why he's the Darth Vader of Permanent Equity.…
 
Brent bares all! Well, sort of. David sits down with Permanent Equity founder & CEO Brent Beshore. What starts as a conversation about the Permanent Approach to planning and growth evolves into Brent sharing about his faith journey, telling his most embarrassing moment with an investor, offering tips for sellers who are starting to think about what…
 
Permanent Equity stewards companies that care what happens next. When it's time for an owner to start thinking about what happens next for their company, family, employees, and customers, what are their options? It can be an isolating and intimidating responsibility. The Permanent Equity team talks about what options the seller faces and what "next…
 
Permanent Equity Managing Directors Emily Holdman and Mark Brooks discuss an operator's framework -- fat, muscle, and bone -- for thinking through cost cutting. Published during the Covid-19 pandemic, the discussion takes into account rapidly changing economic circumstances for small businesses.
 
We wrote The Messy Marketplace to make sure you, the seller, are prepared and equipped for the opportunities and challenges of selling your business. In this discussion, Brent Beshore and Emily Holdman briefly summarize the resources contained in the book and invite you to connect with adventur.es to continue the conversation!…
 
Congratulations, you've sold your business! The day after you close, you'll be waking up in a brand new world. This episode covers what you can expect - how to communicate your transaction, what it feels like to have "a boss," and even how to deal with seller's remorse. Discussion with Brent Beshore and Emily Holdman starts @ 6:32.…
 
There's a joke in private equity that each deal is won and lost at least three times during due diligence. In fact, in the part of the market we cover, the ratio of companies that close after Letter of Intent is reported to be less than 25%! Why is this part of the process so fraught and difficult? In this episode we unpack the practical and emotio…
 
You've generated some interest in your business from prospective buyers. What will their next steps be? In this episode, we walk through the typical process a buyer will follow between the initial expression of interest and the draft of an official Letter of Intent. Discussion with Brent Beshore and Emily Holdman starts @ 5:08.…
 
You've decided on a buyer or group of buyers to whom you'd like to pitch your company. How do you kick-off the process? And once you do, how should you think about rejection if they decide to pass? In this episode, we give you very practical steps on how to reach your potential buyers of choice and how you should think about a buyer passing on your…
 
Now that you've pulled together your marketing materials, it's time to find a buyer. While there are multiple ways to build a market for your company, they each come with tradeoffs. In this episode, we take a look at broad market auctions to hyper-targeting as well as solutions in between and discuss the key considerations for each method. Discussi…
 
There are many ways to market a product or service and the same is true for your business. But what does marketing a business look like and what can you do to be prepared for the process? In this episode, we give you a comprehensive checklist of the descriptions, documents, and numbers you'll need to pull together to present your company in the bes…
 
If you're used to spending a minimal amount on legal and accounting issues, transaction fees can be a real shocker. But resist the temptation to drive fees as low as possible - the best intermediaries and advisors will often command a higher fee but save you money in the final accounting. In this episode we set expectations on ranges of fees and th…
 
Drafting the deal documents is expensive and time-consuming, but also can be a good indicator of progress in negotiations and the buyer's interest in continuing the process. In this episode, we step through the various documents necessary to close a deal and the players and factors that impact this crucial part of the dealmaking process. Discussion…
 
We all have our own negotiating style and most of them can be effective... if you stick to it. Whatever method you choose, you're best served knowing as much as you can about the buyer's motivations. In this episode, we give you a list of questions that will help you prepare to represent your needs and your company in the most effective way. Discus…
 
What the heck is a BATNA? It's an industry acronym for Best Alternative To a Negotiated Agreement. In other words, what's your backup plan if negotiations with a prospective buyer fall through? In this episode, we talk about the importance of developing a solid BATNA and the role it plays in your conversations with buyers. Discussion with Brent Bes…
 
All buyers have one thing in common: they expect a return on their investment. So what is the best way to market your company to buyers knowing they won't invest if they don't see growth potential? This episode hits on some important do's and don'ts as you present your business to prospective buyers. Discussion with Brent Beshore and Emily Holdman …
 
Prospective buyers will express their valuation of your company in different ways. While some will give you a set valuation number, others may use a multiple of earnings or an even more complex formula to be calculated at a predetermined time before close. In this episode, we examine the pros and cons of each method and important considerations as …
 
As a seller, it can be easy to fixate on the valuation and cash at close numbers, especially when they are some of the largest you've seen in your lifetime. But the structure and terms of the deal are equally important. In this episode, we explore how to work with your potential buyer to make sure the structure of your deal is a reflection of your …
 
Buyers commonly make the first move in a transaction. As a seller, this often catches us off guard (in a good or bad way). In this episode, we discuss how to digest an initial offer and the importance of communicating our expectations clearly and transparently. Discussion with Brent Beshore and Emily Holdman starts @ 1:34.…
 
What will your role look like post-close? Do you plan to exit immediately or stay on indefinitely? And how do you want to be compensated in this next phase of your business? In this episode, we examine the different employment structures available and their potential impact on you, your personal finances, and your company. Discussion with Brent Bes…
 
Many company owners own real estate associated with their business in order to expand their returns. As part of a potential transaction, buyers will be interested in the relationship between the real estate and the company and it is likely that real estate will be part of the deal terms in some form. In this episode, we step through the terminology…
 
Reps and warranties. Indemnification. Caps and baskets. Are you still awake? In this episode, we break down the legalese into digestible concepts and walk through how this section of a contract can be used to protect yourself and communicate critical information to a potential buyer. Discussion with Brent Beshore and Emily Holdman starts @ 2:34.…
 
Done well, Employee Option Pools present compelling incentives for the employees running the company post-close. As with most components of a deal, the structure and the math matter. In this episode, we talk about potential pitfalls and the hallmarks of a well-constructed employee compensation plan. Discussion with Brent Beshore and Emily Holdman s…
 
While it's common for Private Equity firms to charge fees as part of the transaction, these fees can take on many forms. Some firms are transparent and only charge enough to cover their expenses, others not so much. In this episode, we cover fee types and structures, as well as things you should watch out for when examining the fees your potential …
 
The math behind Net Working Capital seems straightforward, but agreeing on this number is often the most contentious part of doing a transaction. Why is there so much nuance and why is getting this number right so critically important? This episode dives in to this crucial negotiation point and we share how we almost lost our first deal because of …
 
In situations where the buyer and seller disagree on future earnings, earnouts help bridge the gap by taking a "wait and see" approach to a portion of the valuation. But they can also cause trepidation in sellers as they introduce uncertainty. In this episode, we lay out some questions you should consider before agreeing to an earnout in your trans…
 
The first component of financial deal terms is the amount of cash at closing. But even something as simple as "cash" can take on many different forms. In this episode, we examine the various types of cash at closing, why they are used, how they are structured, and the potential impact on your company after close. Discussion with Brent Beshore and E…
 
In many ways, the deal components are more important than the purchase price. When it comes to purchase price, there is often a tug-of-war between buyer and seller. This episode explores this back and forth by looking the motivations, mechanics, and messiness of agreeing on a price. Discussion with Brent Beshore and Emily Holdman starts @ 1:55.…
 
When people hear about a transaction the first question they ask is: "What is the valuation?" While the answer seems simple on the surface - a single number - the way valuation is decided can take many different paths. In this example-packed episode, we show the diversity of approaches taken towards valuation and talk about why methodology matters.…
 
What is an intermediary? What do they do? How do I know if I need to hire one? In this episode, we present a list of helpful questions to answer as you consider hiring one of the most important advisors on your transaction team.
 
Your advisor team is critical to the success of your transaction. But how can you build your own Dream Team? In this episode we lay out a clever strategy we learned from an original Dream Team member, Larry Bird. Discussion with Brent Beshore and Emily Holdman starts @ 1:23.
 
Picking a great team of advisors is the most important transaction decision you will make. So what should your team look like? What should you look for in an advisor? In this episode we discuss the members and attributes necessary to build a stellar advisor team. Discussion with Brent Beshore and Emily Holdman starts @ 2:58.…
 
Investors and advisors often speak in terms of “multiples.” The key question is: a multiple of what? Potential buyers are interested in the true earning power of your business. This episode explores the ins and outs of EBITDA and other methodologies for measuring earnings. Discussion with Brent Beshore and Emily Holdman starts @ 1:38.…
 
Private equity firms, fundless sponsors, search funds, family offices, strategics… the buyers of private businesses vary widely in the way they acquire, operate, and finance their purchases. In this episode, we go deep on each type of potential purchaser and look at their incentives for buying, typical financing structures, operational preferences,…
 
Private company transactions come in a variety of flavors, but most fit into two major buckets: buyouts and recapitalizations. In this episode, we discuss the differences between the two transactions and provide a helpful and comprehensive list of questions for business owners who are becoming minority owners to help set expectations with their buy…
 
If there’s an unexpected area where we see people stumble, this is it. Making wise decisions about who knows about your transaction and when is critical. In this episode, we step through each group of stakeholders and discuss considerations about the content and timing of your message to each one. Discussion with Brent Beshore and Emily Holdman sta…
 
Prospective buyers will ask you some of the most challenging and personal questions you’ve encountered. Can you trust them and answer honestly? In this episode we take a look at the issue of confidentiality and how legally bound mutual trust makes a transaction possible. Discussion with Brent Beshore and Emily Holdman starts @ 1:14.…
 
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