Exit Planning for Business Owners

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What are you doing to plan for the single, most critically important financial event of your life?

What are you doing to plan for the single, most critically important financial event of your life?

Our business is to know YOURS!

Planning your business exit is a process that begins 3–10 years before you want to leave. It is a multi-step process that begins with determining how your successful exit will look. Once your goals are set, we can work with you to make sure your business is transferred to the successor you choose, at the price you want, on a timetable of your choosing.

What is Exit Planning?

Exit Planning is a comprehensive approach to designing an exit strategy from a business. It encompasses setting specific exit objectives. For example, when do you want to leave? And, to whom will you sell the business? Exit Planning also involves the formation of a team of trusted, professional advisors: CPA, Transaction Attorney, Financial Advisor, Investment Banker or Business Broker, Commercial Banker and perhaps a Management Consultant. The advisory team develops a written plan detailing each aspect of the transition sequence and explains exactly what steps will be taken, when and why. In short, it’s project management spanning multiple disciplines.

Strategic Exit Planning enables an owner to:

  • Transition under their time frame
  • Maximize the after-tax value of the business
  • Ensure continuity in case of an unexpected event
  • Seek financial freedom for their family

If you see ownership change in your future, we can help you plan a successful business exit. We can help you answer critical planning questions and help you through the development and implementation of a comprehensive exit plan.

Our team has the knowledge and resources to be your quarterback in the exit planning process. In fact, The St. Louis Business Journal in association with NABCAP, recognized our LPL Financial office as one of the St. Louis area's Top 10 wealth managers*. Contact us today to find out why at (636) 200-4160.

*Award was earned in 2011 and is based on an evaluation of twenty different practice categories such as experience, credentials, assets under management, fee structure and philosophy among other factors.

Our exit planning solution for business owners is based on a Seven Step Exit Planning Process™, which is illustrated and described below. Depending on your level of prior planning, you may need to address all or just a few of the components of the process. 

Seven Step Exit Planning Process™

Step 1 – What are the Business Owner’s Objectives?

Determine the desired outcome of transferring your business, including desired departure date, value needed from the business, the individuals or entities to whom you want to transfer the business, and the impact on others such as family, employees, and the community.

Step 2 – What is the Value of your Business and Personal Finances?

Identify the current value of your business, projected cash flow and other non-business assets and income.

Step 3 – How can I Maximize and Protect my Business’ Value?

Identify the elements that give your business value, called value drivers, and focus on protecting and maximizing them.

Step 4 – How do I Transfer Ownership to a Third Party?

Depending on who you wish to sell to, you will go through the process associated with either step four or five. If you wish to transfer your business to a third party, we identify and implement the strategies and techniques that result in the most beneficial sales price and terms.

Step 5 – How do I Transfer Ownership to Insiders?

A transfer to family members, key employees or co-owners—those who may have little or no personal capital—while extracting the desired value and minimizing risk can be tricky. We can show you how!

Step 6 – How do I Establish a Business Continuity Plan?

Prepare for contingencies, such as the death or permanent disability of an owner, to minimize the negative impact of such events on the business, the business owner’s family and co-owners, if any.

Step 7 – How do I Preserve my Personal Wealth and Estate?

Create a plan to utilize your newly created capital, preserving wealth and minimizing taxes using both lifetime and estate planning tools.

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