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Founder Stories

Selling a Software Business

Steve had been told his business had the potential to achieve a 12x EBITDA, he sold successfully for a 21x EBTDA and was delighted that the words of warning about stress never materialised.

5 minute read

I was looking to understand the value of my business and potential paths I could take to selling it. The frustration for me was that I didn’t feel I had the knowledge or data to make an informed decision on the best strategy.

I spoke to a lot of other CEOs in my network who had sold their business. They described the process to me as perilous and stressful, so I had fully prepared myself for that, convincing myself that it was worth it for the end result.

I did my own due diligence on advisors, reviewing 6 in total. It came down to 2 in the end, and the other firm also ‘prepared me’ for the difficult journey that lay ahead. At that stage I had been told my business had the potential to achieve a multiple of 12x EBITDA.

I decided at first to test drive Bean Partners by investing in their Valuation Strategy. This piece of work gave me a powerful clarity on several perspectives. Rather than just deliver what my business could be worth, it identified various options and strategies I could pursue along with practically what I needed to get in place to enhance the value of the business.

It also gave me much to think over, as it presented various options to just an exit. In all, the outputs and counsel from this piece of work gave me confidence on my exit route and how to best achieve it.

I remember the moment the fog of uncertainty lifted. I felt empowered with a fresh sense of purpose for my future.

I then chose to continue my relationship with Bean Partners to sell my business for 3 reasons;
1) The way they used data and evidence as the key driver of advice and proposed strategies during the Valuation Strategy work gave me confidence
2) The deep experience and very engaging energy across the whole team was compelling
3) The deep belief they had in my business and the value it could bring to an acquirer made me feel we were very aligned

I pursued my preferred route with Bean Partners and successfully sold my business for a multiple of 21x EBITDA.

Since then, a new chapter of my life has been born. This new chapter allows me to work with a variety of different people and organisations that share similar values and working style. It also allows me to pursue new interests and importantly, have more family time.

My experience of working with Bean Partners was a delight! The level of engagement, commitment and support went well beyond my expectations.

Despite the words of warnings from friends, CEO colleagues and other advisors, those stresses never materialised. I honestly believe that this is due to the way Bean integrated themselves into the process, proactively navigating me and taking real ownership of all key aspects.

Thank you to the team, particularly to Damian and Tom who I worked so closely with.

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