Before the discovery call, a seller will have already submitted three years of profit and loss, balance, and cash flow statements. Having a call is a clear signal that the company matches SYE criteria. Out of every business reviewed by SYE, only 6.8% make it to the discovery phase. Congratulations on making it to this step!
During this fun and easy call, expect to meet with one or more members of the SYE team. This call has two major purposes. First, we want to get a clear understanding of you as a seller. We also want to determine whether moving forward serves our interests and yours. At this phase, SYE has the goal of answering two key questions: What does the seller want, and can SYE deliver on those wants?
Multiple people can join the call, but SYE strives to make this stage of the process very simple. Even if there are several partners who must agree on a sale, select one direct contact to speak on behalf of the company for this call. For the direct contact, choose someone with a combination of day-to-day knowledge and ownership rights. Additionally, other stakeholders can take part in the acquisition process later.
For SYE, the most important part of the discovery call is determining what the seller wants. SYE uses this understanding of the seller’s wants and needs to decide whether to move forward to the second stage.
During this call, a seller will expect questions like:
What financial milestones has your company reached?
What are some of the KPIs you monitor to make sure operations are running smoothly?
What kind of marketing has worked best for your business?
Why did you start your business?
What do you envision the next chapter of your life looking like?
Sellers should have access to accounting software, like QuickBooks, during the call. It is also useful to have the company’s social media profiles, email marketing platforms and ecommerce software also pulled up. These bits of data are great ways to get quick snapshots about the health and trajectory of the company.
If SYE cannot move forward with a business, the seller will receive a prompt notification. Respect is one of the core values of SYE, so sellers can expect clear communication at every step of the process. At SYE, a “no” is not a “never.” Sellers are always educated about the specific reasons a sale cannot happen. Oftentimes an acquisition can proceed after those issues receive attention.