August 7, 2023
August 7, 2023

Thinking of selling your business? Here’s how to maximise your sale potential

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Selling a business can be a significant undertaking, requiring careful planning and execution. To improve the chances of a successful sale it is essential to present your business to potential buyers in the best possible light. Over the next few weeks, we will share some of the key factors you should consider if you are thinking of selling your business. Addressing these considerations can maximize the sale potential of your business.

Contracts and Agreements

It is important to evaluate contracts and agreements associated with your business. Identify key contracts, such as customer agreements, supplier contracts, leases, and employment agreements.  Evaluate the ability to transfer or assign these agreements, including whether consent will be required from the other parties to the agreement.  Ensure that key contracts have been properly dated, executed, and have not expired.  Be sure to address any issues with respect to the contracts proactively to avoid complications during the sale process.

Organise Your Financial Records

Before initiating the sale process, it is imperative to review and organise your financial records. Buyers will closely scrutinize your financial statements to evaluate the profitability and sustainability of your business. Ensure financial records, including income statements, balance sheets, tax returns, and cash flow statements, are accurate, up-to-date, and well-documented. Consider engaging an accountant or financial advisor to assist you in preparing these records to demonstrate the full potential of your business.

Intellectual Property Protection

Protecting your intellectual property rights is crucial when selling a business. Conduct an audit of your IP assets, including trademarks, copyrights, patents, trade secrets, and proprietary technologies. Verify that all necessary registrations are in place and up to date. Ensure that your IP is adequately protected through confidentiality agreements, non-disclosure agreements, and non-compete clauses. Review existing IP assignments and licences to verify their transferability and identify any restrictions or obligations. Demonstrating a strong and protected IP portfolio will enhance the perceived value of your business to potential buyers.

Compliance with Laws and Regulations

Before selling your business, ensure that your operations are fully compliant with relevant laws and regulations. Conduct a thorough review of your business practices, licenses, permits, and regulatory obligations to identify any non-compliance issues. Rectify any deficiencies and ensure that any relevant licences and permits can be transferred to the new owner. Demonstrating a commitment to legal compliance will instil confidence in potential buyers and minimize potential legal risks associated with the acquisition.

Employee Matters and Employment Contracts

Evaluate your employee matters to ensure compliance with employment laws and regulations. Review employee contracts, confidentiality agreements, non-compete clauses, and any agreements that may impact the transferability of employees. Assess any potential labour disputes, outstanding employee claims, or pending litigation that may affect a sale of the business.  Ensure that key employees are satisfied and engaged, as their departure during the sales process could adversely affect the value of your business.  Open communication and preparation will promote a smoother transition and maintain employee trust and morale.

Lease and Real Estate Matters

If your business operates from a leased property, review your lease agreement to determine its transferability. Identify any restrictions or conditions related to lease assignment and prepare to obtain the necessary consents from the landlord. If you own the property, a property lawyer should be engaged to ensure the smooth transfer of ownership and address any potential encumbrances or title issues. Resolving lease or real estate matters upfront will mitigate complications during the sale process.

Data Privacy and Protection

In an increasingly digital world, data privacy and protection have become critical concerns. Evaluate your business's data protection practices and ensure compliance with relevant privacy laws, such as the Australian Privacy Principles (APPs). Identify and address any potential data breaches or vulnerabilities to protect the privacy rights of your customers, suppliers and employees. Demonstrating a robust data protection framework will enhance the reputation of, and trust in, your business.

Due Diligence and Disclosures

Prepare for the due diligence process by compiling essential documents and information that buyers may request. Be transparent and forthcoming with disclosures to potential buyers, providing them with accurate and complete information about the business. Conduct your own due diligence on the buyer to ensure their credibility and ability to complete the transaction. Engage legal professionals to guide you through the due diligence process and assist in identifying and addressing any legal or financial issues that may arise. By conducting thorough due diligence and making proper disclosures, you can build trust with potential buyers and minimize the risk of post-sale disputes or liabilities.


Selling a business requires careful preparation and attention to detail. By considering the key factors mentioned above, you can position your business in the best possible light for potential buyers. Seeking advice from professionals experienced in business sales will further increase your chances of a successful and profitable transaction.  

Please contact the Sierra Legal Team if you require further information about this topic or assistance with the sale of your business.

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