It is essential that you do not miss the "window of opportunity" that you have to realize a premium transaction price during the next 2 or possibly 3 years. This becomes even more critical, when we remember the devastated acquisition market conditions caused by the Great Recession from late-2008 through the third quarter of 2010. You need an IB firm, whose fundamental philosophy is to consummate a sale only when their clients have obtained the optimum price, not one that just wants to close a deal quickly at any price. Your advisor should be willing to spend the time to position and time the sale, so that it generates the maximum transaction price.
The current period presents a window of opportunity to obtain a premium price. However if this window is missed, there is a substantial long-term and likely long-lasting risk that the company's value will be significantly reduced due to events beyond the seller's control.
It takes an extremely perceptive and sophisticated executive to understand the incredible level of risk lurking over the global economy and correspondingly their company's value for the remainder of the decade. If these risks come to fruition, it could have a catastrophic effect on the economy and financial markets. The best time to cash-out for anyone that expects to sell their company in the next 10 years is by doing so no later than 2014, and preferably by the end of 2012 or 2013.
About the Author: George Spilka is president of George Spilka and Associates, a national investment banking firm based in Pittsburgh that specializes in middle market, closely-held corporations. It has a broad-based service that advises clients through the entire acquisition process. Its client base has included a diverse group of distribution, manufacturing, construction and service companies. Spilka has been advising middle market companies in the sale of their firms since 1978. For more information go to www.georgespilka.com; call 412-486-8189; fax 412-486-3697 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org