Case Study - Selling my Business


Joe had a successful highly specialized engineering business that serviced a niche market. The critical factor to the business was its highly skilled staff, which were in short supply across the industry sector. Joe had come to a stage in his life that he wished to retire.

Previous Situation

Joe engaged a broker to sell the business. The broker advertised the business on NZBIZBuySell and Trade Me and ‘waited for the phone to ring’. There were 8 responses to the advertising but only one with relevant business experience, albeit that was general engineering in nature. The majority of respondees were ‘tyre-kickers’. Because of the lack of buyer affinity with the business, no parties were engaged with.


Joe approached me to sell his business. From my industry research and Joe’s knowledge of the industry we came up with a list of the most likely (natural) buyer/s. I approached the parties on the list and received interest from five parties. This was narrowed down to three, based on affinity to the business and assessed ability to complete a purchase.


Five months after Joe had approached me, a sale of his business was concluded. The purchaser was the ‘stand-out’ party, given that it had a very similar business operating in another city in NZ, and it was seeking skilled staff – something which Joe’s business had in ‘spades’.


Two key elements in a sale and purchase of a business are:

  1. Identifying and approaching the ‘right’ potential purchasers’ is critical – that is, a buyer who can get most value from the business, and
  2. Effective relationships between the buyer and the seller are critical to getting deals done – the fact that the buyer and seller, in this instance, were able to swap ‘war stories’ on the industry was fundamental to the deal getting across the line.

Next Steps

Mike Bradley and Nigel Smith would welcome your contact to discuss how Covisory can assist you with your business. Please complete the form and one of our team will be in touch with you.