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Comments

Leon Parker

I just want to add my support to Richards observations and the comments of Carl Grimes. After over 20 years in the business I find that the folks making comments like some of those mentioned above usually are either not qualified and won't accept that fact, or are too difficult to deal with for us to be able to work with them.

I have on occasion had a very hard time getting customers to understand why I wouldn't give them information about a listing. I have also been verbally attacked and insulted by rude customers. I suspect that a lot of us sooner or later start taking the easy way out and just stop responding to customers who are obviously unqualified or very hard to work with. A lot of them really need to read Richard's book and follow his advice about how to deal with us.

Carl Grimes

Reading the comments of those above about their experience with business brokers is very interesting. As a broker with 13 years of experience and a successful track record of helping business sellers and buyers I concur that our profession is one of the most misunderstood as evidenced by the comments of David Ellis, Ruth Natividad and Albert Williams. Mr. Williams wants audited books? Ms. Natividad likens a business sale to real estate?
It appears to me that these folks don't understand that business brokers don't get paid unless a deal happens that is satisfactory to the seller of the business. We are fiduciaries for the sellers, not the buyers. Part of our job is to pre-screen buyers and protect the sellers while helping to put a deal together that works for both parties.
The process starts with a buyer who will disclose information about themselves in a timely manner that allows us as brokers to meet our obligations to the sellers we represent.
There is a system and a process that works but all too often buyers want to sieze control without providing information needed to demonstrate their ability and motivation.
I can affirm that over 90% of internet buyer suspects do not ever respond to our first phone call to them. Our company's practice is to call the buyer rather than just fire off an e-mail asking for confidential information.In fact a large number of buyer-suspects don't even provide a phone number they just want all the information about a listing but won't provide information needed to demonstrate their ability and motivation to buy.
Yes, there are a incompetents in our business just as there are in others.
However, if you are consistently having problems with business brokers not doing what you want then maybe your expectations might be out of line.
We get paid to do deals, not hinder them.

Don Wilson

The broker issue is covered in Richards book "How to Buy a Good Business at a Great Price" I would encourage everyone who is serious about purchasing a good business to get it and read it about 3 times. Why 3 times you ask? Because the first time through I didn't get it, the second time I get some of it and the third time I got it.

Brokers know that 90% of the people that call them will not buy a business so you have to let them know that you are not one of the 90%. How do you do that you ask? Read the book.

Frederick Greenhalge, Jr.

20 June A.D. 2007

I have heard stories of business brokers who don't see very responsive and some who are seemingly obstructive to furnishing information to potential buyers. How can this be in the best interest of those who are relying on them to sell their businesses? One thought is that they might want the businesses for themselves, for example, or they are afraid ot losing a percentage of the commission should a client negotiate a lower price with a buyer. To allay such concern perhaps brokers could have buyers make an agreement to pay the same compensation to them even if the purchase price is lower.

My experience in looking at business listings shows about half the brokers are very responsive and the rest less so.

If business brokering were more standardized like real estate brokering is maybe everyone would be more happy.

Tony

I have my share of running into non-responsive brokers too. After disclosing my personal info and signing whatever agreement requested, some broker just doesn't respond. Most of the time, I would just call them up repeatedly until they complied.

What irritated me were those brokerage firm that asked for photo ID. And that were for a simple recycling business and another times for a commercial laundry business. Needless to say, I gave up on those. Fortunately, there are also good brokers around to keep me busy.

Linda Burhanudin

I was disappointed with many brokers who want all of my personal infornmation but do not give out the full disclosures about the business that I am going to buy. The are not fully understand the business that they are listing but want to be in the driving seat. Many times they do not respond to my request after I have been giving them my full information.
How do I deal with these kind of brokers?

Albert Williams

I believe that when a business owner wants to sell a business, he should do so without a business broker. Most brokers I have worked with DO NOT work for the best interest of the buyer nor seller. They cherry pick potential buyers for other more lucrative businesses on their books. Buyers are often not even disclosed to the seller if it doesn't benefit the broker. They only disclose the interest of the buyer to the seller if the seller and buyer both inform the broker they are ready to negotiate. If a business owner is serious about selling, he should have his books audited and deal with all potential buyers directly. After all, this is a business not real estate.

Richard

For those of you who question how this deal is being done, there is a pool of outside investors financing this acquisition in a joint venture structure.

Ruth Natividad

There are many ways to finance a business deal with no money down and no personal guarantee. You could look at it like buying real estate. In real estate, there are many ways you can structure the deal and negotiate the terms like cashback at closing, seller pays closing costs, 100% financing which is the same as no money down, seller financing and so forth.
A business deal can also be structured. The buyer can buy the business by writing a note using the stocks, equipment or real estate of the business. The business/corporation can be used to get no personal guarantee loans from banks. You have to be creative or think outside of the box.
I'm actually part of the 33 who attended Ron's workshop. I was skeptical at first as well, but I decided to see for myself. The knowledge that I gained is invaluable and we continue to have ongoing support through classes and coaching all for no cost.

Richard Parker

This scenario is proof positive how important both creativity and knowledge are to this process. All parties need to explore every avenue to get deals done and buyers especially need to be well informed about the process and what unconventional options exist.

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