This is a question that we are regularly asked during the initial conversations with business owners contemplating a sale.The short answer is that a good business will sell regardless of time of year, but as with many business sectors, there is an element of seasonality, especially when we are talking about a business likely to be bought by a smaller trade buyer or individual, rather than a large corporate buyer.
The graphic below illustrates the seasonality in levels of enquiry:
It will probably surprise no-one that the quietest times for enquiries about businesses on the market is December, when the focus turns to turkey and tinsel and July / August, when sun loungers and sandcastles take precedence.
The busiest times of year are related to the above – particularly January / February, where corporate entities focus on enacting the year’s strategic objectives, while individuals react to a desire to change lifestyle. September through to November is also a particularly buoyant time, when senior management and others have had their summer breaks but it’s too early to be thinking about Christmas.
Ultimately however, the best month to start marketing your business is the month that you feel it is the right time to take the plunge. In all likelihood it will take a bit of time to attract the right buyer, which means you may naturally fall across both ‘hot’ periods and the ‘cooler’ ones.
When the time comes to start the sale process, we will be delighted to assist.