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The Entrepreneur's Exit Plan: Building a Business that Sells


 

This edition of the newsletter is brought to you by:

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HAULING SPOTLIGHT: with ROBERT PARADIS


Company: Junk BearEstablished: 2019

Locations: Southington & Milford, Connecticut

Services: Full Service Junk Removal & Light Demolition

Instagram: @JunkBear


Q & A with Robert

What's your inspiration and journey in the hauling industry?

Following and learning from high quality companies such as: Lugaway, Joseph Junk Removal, Fire Dawgs Junk Removal, Junk Doctors, Grizzly Junk Pros.

 

What motivated you to build your company with the intention of selling it?

To have options. Build it as if you are planning to sell it which will provide you two options: a) sell it b) keep it

 

Can you describe the key strategies you implemented from the beginning to make your company attractive to potential buyers?

The name of the company is scalable and can be in several different states, markets without feeling too localized. The name is memorable. We wanted to stay in our lane with the services we provide: junk removal and light demo. We don’t dabble in the endless amount of other home services that can be offered. Buyers do not want to be confused as to what value you provide. It’s the Tom Brady analogy – nobody cares if he’s a good chess player, they just needed him to throw TD’s.

 

Could you discuss how you maintained or enhanced your company's value throughout its growth to ensure it remained appealing to buyers?

Know your numbers, measure your numbers often to make sure you are profitable. Buyers can’t buy businesses that don’t turn a reasonable profit.

 

In preparing your company for sale, what were some unexpected challenges you faced, and how did you overcome them?

Operating in a “bankable” way is harder than operating like a traditional small business mindset. (Deposit cash, pay taxes on cash, don’t keep it and stay properly insured.)

 

What role did company culture and employee morale play in the process of building your company to sell?

A positive company culture is huge. We are constantly thinking about how we can enhance the value that our hardworking team members get from the company. They are the face of the company and we want them to perform at a high level, so you need to reinvest back into your team members, so that you get buy in from them. The longer we can retain people, the better they will get at their jobs the higher the level of customer service we can offer to our clients.

 

How important was scalability in your business model to attract buyers, and how did you demonstrate this scalability?

Scalability is only good if you are profitable. Top line for vanity, bottom line for sanity. I would say we demonstrated it by adding trucks, adding a second building and maintaining the assets that we currently have as best as we can.

 

Can you share any advice on maintaining customer relationships and service quality during the transition period of selling your company?

Be the face of the company before and after acquisition.

 

What lessons did you learn from building a company to sell that you would apply in future entrepreneurial endeavors?

Knowing what I know now about having options to sell or not would by default influence my decisions on what industry I’d go into for my next venture. I’d target industries that have a demand from private equity.

 

What advice would you give to entrepreneurs who are starting with the end goal of selling their business?

Be legitimate, charge legitimate prices, do not undercut the industry that you service and deliver the highest value within a profitable reason to your clients.

 

What challenges have you faced and how have you overcome them?

I worked a full time corporate ops management job while running/partnering in 3 side businesses…..I had a newly wife, 4 kids, 1 sweetheart live in mother in-law, 4 pets….I was doing everything mediocre…It wasn’t until I put all my pressure and time into ONE thing that led to having fairly significant success and winning 4 industry awards in the process.

 

What's your business philosophy and future vision?

The team that communicates best, wins. Future vision is to be the biggest, little guy, on the block.

 

And lastly, Rob, What's your secret to success?

Pray, Plan, Pursue.

 

Welcome to our latest newsletter! The journey of growing a successful hauling business is not just about the daily tasks but about creating a lasting legacy, ultimately shaping a venture that’s primed for sale. Warren Buffet insightfully noted, "It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it." This wisdom underlines the importance of every decision we make, especially when considering the future sale of your business.

 

Crafting a Brand with Future Sales in Mind

A memorable brand goes beyond the day-to-day operations; it forms a connection that not only attracts loyal customers but also entices potential buyers. Your brand's strength is a beacon for future opportunities.

 

Efficiency and innovation are non-negotiable in the competitive hauling industry. Investing in advanced systems and the latest technologies not only streamlines your operations but significantly enhances your business’s market value.

 

The Backbone of Your Business

The value of a skilled, dedicated team cannot be overstated. Their growth and development are direct investments into the attractiveness of your business to future buyers. Similarly, cultivating strong customer relationships and delivering exceptional service can transform a regular business into a desirable acquisition target.

 

Exit Planning: A Strategic Move

Understanding your business’s worth and having a clear succession plan are crucial steps in exit planning. "The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now," says an old Chinese proverb, highlighting the importance of preparation and network building for when the right opportunity arises.

 

Towards a Seamless Transition

Exceptional service and personalized customer interactions can significantly enhance your business's reputation, making it more attractive to potential buyers. It's about setting a foundation for growth that extends beyond your ownership, ensuring the business thrives under new leadership.

 

As we look towards building businesses ready for transition, it’s about more than just profitability. It's about nurturing a legacy that endures and flourishes, ready to be handed over when the time comes.

 

Drawing on my experiences as both buyer and seller, I appreciate the substantial depth of this topic, like diving into a 100-foot deep pool. I'm planning a series of articles to explore this complexity further. Be sure to check back soon for more detailed explorations online!

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Have you been through the journey of preparing your business for sale, or are you contemplating it? We're keen to hear your stories and strategies. Reply and or share your insights with us in the Haulers Forum. Together, let's inspire and guide each other toward building businesses that aren't just successful today but poised for future success.


Justin Hubbard

Justin Hubbard

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