William Buck Australia
As a fully integrated firm of Chartered Accountants and advisors, William Buck provides a complete solution. Putting you at the core of the business, our advisors work together to ensure that careful consideration is given to your business and personal wealth affairs.
Working closely with you and your team, our Business Advisors can help you plan and implement contemporary business strategies and practices to meet your business’s full potential.
Our commercially minded tax specialists offer clear, responsive advice to manage your tax risk, address local and international issues, and develop strategies to optimise your tax position.
Our audit team has extensive experience in a range of engagements, giving stakeholders independent and objective assurance on financial information, transactions and processes.
Our Corporate Advisory team provides objective, strategic and commercial advice across a broad range of business issues. Our work spans the breadth each engagement from the origination of ideas to managing the transaction process, valuation and structuring.
Our highly experienced team of liquidators and trustees use their extensive expertise to assist in times of financial distress, achieving the best outcome for all stakeholders.
By understanding not only what you want to achieve but why it’s important, our wealth advisors can create strategies attuned to your key priorities. The end result is a plan focused on your life goals.
The William Buck Hour could be the most profitable hour you spend this year.
Sweeping changes to financial reporting may impact your financial position and business operations.
Our experts are here to help you understand what you need to know about Safe Harbour legislation.
Check our Private Business Tax Reform resource centre to see how the most significant changes may affect you and your business.
William Buck has a team of professionals with specialist experience and know-how on a range of industry sectors.
Our advisors understand the risks and opportunities unique to the agribusiness sector. Taking a strategic view of your operations they provide relevant guidance and advice.
Assisting public and private schools, vocational colleges, universities and private training providers, our education specialists provide timely and valuable assurance services together with strategic, financial and management advice.
Our Government and public sector team has substantial experience in assisting all levels of government to review their structures and develop strategies, in line with relevant legislative requirements and accounting and audit standards.
Working with over 1,600 clients in the health sector, our advisors help practitioners and health care corporates achieve their business and personal goals
Our hospitality and tourism team has a working knowledge of the industry which, when combined with our technical knowledge, can assist you in reaching your commercial goals.
By staying on top of changes in the manufacturing sector, our industry experts provide relevant and timely guidance to a broad range of manufacturing business.
Our mining and energy team has the experience and resources to help start-ups, developing businesses and well-established companies to meet their commercial goals.
Integrity and transparency are at the heart of the best Not for Profit organisations. These values re shared by our dedicated Not for Profit team, which helps entities to establish to improve performance and develop strategies for long-term growth.
Our advisors understand the challenges and opportunities facing the professional services sector first hand. This experience together with our expertise helps to determine your strategic objectives and provide concise, relevant advice to help you achieve your goals.
Our property and construction team assist on a wide range of assignments from property development to construction and large infrastructure projects. Their diverse experience, technical expertise and commercial know-how to help you tackle the important issues.
Our retail and wholesale team works with a variety of businesses from family owned operations to franchises and larger chains, to provide advice and guidance on the issues that count.
With the skills to help tech companies grow from startup to exit – we provide tailored tech company solutions, supported by access to a range of specialists across numerous service lines and industries.
Our transport and distribution team works with businesses to review their operations, improve efficiency and productivity and ensure compliance with the latest regulatory developments.
The William Buck Health Hour could be the most profitable hour you spend this year.
We work with individuals, businesses and community organisations with a particular focus on the mid-market. Drawing on our extensive experience, our advisors will challenge your thinking and re-frame problems to understand their root-cause.
We’re more than just accountants and advisors, we aspire to create positive change in the lives of our clients and our people.
Life as a CFO can be complex, exciting and demanding. Combining technical excellence with decades of working closely with and listening to the needs of CFOs, our advisors understand the competing demands of your role.
Whatever your needs, we have the expert resources to create the best outcome for you and your business. As our client, you’ll benefit from our integrated services model that puts you at the core of its business.
We create and implement personal wealth plans and tax strategies that give our clients greater certainty that their financial and personal goals will be met.
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Established in 1895, we’re more than just advisors; offering a full range of services and 360 degree support, we aspire to create a positive change in the lives of our clients and our people.
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The decision to sell your business can be a difficult and emotional one, particularly when the sale may be the culmination of a lifetime’s work. In an ideal world, the planning process to sell your business should be put in place when setting-up your business. Yet the reality is, many business owners only begin to think about planning the exit of their business when it comes time to sell.
Ideally, to derive the most value out of your business, planning the exit of your business should take three to five years, which allows enough time for the results of any strategies undertaken to flow through the business
Exiting a business is a four-stage process:
William Buck Corporate Advisory provides complete end-to-end transaction support during the entire sale process using our integrated approach which incorporates; strategic planning; valuation; and specialist taxation and accounting skills.
In this article, we discuss one of the most critical and overlooked phases of selling a business – preparing for exit.
Ideally, your personal objectives and those of the business will be aligned. Thus, understanding your personal objectives should be central to any business plans. Some key factors that need to be considered in determining your best exit strategy are your:
Once your personal objectives are understood, a strategy should be implemented to maximise the value of the business at the time of exit.
To help derive such a strategy, we refer you to our other article Seven steps to increase the value of your business.
One of the reasons to start planning for the exit early, is that it can often take considerable time for business improvements to translate into financial results. Good planning will also help you to exit at an optimum time when the business is doing well, and market conditions are favourable. The plans should also help you identify your best exit time-frame and strategy – having regard to both the businesses’ growth potential and your personal objectives.
There are many exit strategies available to private businesses including:
Our advisors can help you to identify and plan the strategy that is likely to provide you with the optimum result.
The 2019 William Buck Exit Smart Report found that that 69 percent of respondents have not sought advice on how to best structure their business to maximise the after-tax value. 64 percent of respondents were not aware of the tax concessions available to them.
There are a number of restructuring options that may be open to small business owners to reduce their tax liabilities on the sale of their businesses. These include:
A small business CGT concession may also be able to help you save for your retirement, by adding a large tax-effective contribution to your superannuation.
Other areas to consider and discuss with your advisors, which can help you maintain and increase the value of your business whilst you own it, include:
William Buck can assist you to structure your affairs and maximise your after-tax outcome to ensure you keep more of your well-earned money, while still meeting your tax obligations.
In our experience, the importance of strong financial reporting systems is not well understood.
Many business owners consider investment in systems as non-productive costs that don’t drive profit.
However, as businesses are frequently sold on a multiple of their earnings, buyers place considerable emphasis on the quality and reliability of the financial management systems. Ideally you will be able to provide a potential buyer with:
The earnings on which the business is valued will normally need to be assessed in accordance with accounting standards. Therefore, having your accounts audited not only helps provide credibility to your reported financial results, it also gives you some assurance that unexpected earnings and price adjustments will not arise during the buyer’s due diligence process.
Legal issues identified during buyer due diligence are also a common reason for either the deal falling over, or a substantially lower price being offered.
Common legal issues include trademarks and domain names not being registered, or important IP that is not subject to a patent or copyright.
Often business owners have insufficient protection in their agreements with employees or contractors that ensures IP developed by the business is owned by the business. Another key problem area can be that the business is actually operating in breach of another company’s IP.
Some other key items to include on your legal review checklist are:
It’s important to deal with legal issues before you start a sales process. It can take considerable time to resolve any legal issues, particularly if key contracts need to be renegotiated. Hence, we suggest that you engage with a reputable M&A lawyer early in your planning process.
We have observed that many owners of private businesses do not hold accurate views as to the value of their businesses. To ensure that you have a realistic view as to the value of your business, we recommend that you seek an and independent valuation.
A good business valuation process will robustly analyse your businesses strategy; market position; customer base; historical and forecast financial performance; as well as search for sales of comparable businesses. A proper business valuation process can in itself identify issues which may challenge the sale of your business or depress the sale price. Business owners who are unprepared for sale often only discover such weaknesses during the buyer’s due diligence process – invariably having a negative impact on their position in negotiations.
Common financial impediments may include inadequate financial records; existence of redundant or non-core assets; high working capital usage; lack of written agreements and records; or issues with statutory compliance.
Business and market impediments may include low market share;gross-profit margins below that of competitors; static or declining turnover; lack of protection of intellectual property; reliance on a few customers; reliance on too few products or services; or the lack of a good strategic plan.
Ultimately, the objective is to help you as the business owner to achieve your financial goals. As any business decisions are likely to have a direct impact on your personal wealth plans, it’s critical that any business planning also considers and aligns with your personal wealth plan. Your personal issues that need to be considered include your tax and estate planning, asset protection, retirement planning and your immediate plans following the sale of the business.
Our specialists work closely to understand the interaction between your business and personal situation. This ensures that you get the best from both your personal and business wealth.
Once your business is well prepared for sale and your personal objectives are aligned, you can move onto thesecond stage of exiting your business, which involves preparing an information memorandum and finding a suitable buyer. Our specialists can work with you through the whole transaction process to help you realise the optimal value for your business and secure your future wealth.
Do you need help with the exit planning process of your business? Call our William Buck team today.
Download the latest William Buck Exit Smart Survey