Mergers & Acquisitions Advisory

A Neumann & Associates, LLC

July 13, 2015

Helping Out Our Biggest Competitors – the Kids!

By Joseph Eneldas


By Frank Arcoleo, one of Neumann and Associates premier M&A Advisors

I’m often asked who our competition is.  There are other M&A advisors out there, some smaller and some larger.  And although I’ve met a few of them, I’ve rarely, if ever, run across any of them in dealings with prospects and clients.  So when I’m asked, I tell people I have two main competitors.  In this month’s newsletter, I’ll deal with one of them.

The biggest competitor, I tell them, is “the kids.”  Many small business owners are owned by single individuals, and generally, these owners don’t have large 401(k)s or other significant retirement savings.  In most ways, there business IS their retirement.  However, there are family members – often one or more sons and daughters – who are also active in the business, and some of these family members have historically been instrumental in the growth and success of the enterprise.

“When an owner begins to contemplate such an exit strategy,” says Achim Neumann, CEO of A Neumann & Associates, LLC, the full-service M&A advisor based in Atlantic Highlands, New Jersey, “he or she needs to balance two major factors: the need for retirement income, coupled with the desire to give part of the business to his/her heirs, both as an inheritance and as a reward for past contributions to the business.”

Balancing these factors is not necessarily easy, but it’s critical.  “I can’t tell you how many families I’ve seen split apart, broken into factions, based on perceived inequities in dealing with business transitions,” says Vincent Eades, Managing Director of the Southern Maryland Region.  “Such a situation turns a hard-earned family asset into a wedge that causes lasting bitterness.”

As business brokers, we could recommend one solution – just sell the business and deal with the allocation of proceeds in the same way as any other estate would be distributed.  And in fact we’ve seen some of these situations, most often when the next generation is only minimally interested in continuing to own and operate the business.  Such a situation is the exception, not the rule, and for most of these owners, selling is not an option.  So how can we help, even absent a sale?

“For an owner who intends to keep the business in the family,” says Gary Herviou, Managing Director of the Central New Jersey region, “we highly recommend that he get an independent business valuation, performed by a 3rd party who is not connected in any way to the family.”  Armed with a true market value of the firm at a given point in time, the owner can decide how much of that value he or she needs to fund retirement (either in a lump sum payment from the successors or paid out in installments over time) or other legacy items, such as charitable contributions, and how much can be given to the kids.  That allocation of business value may not be easy, but without knowing the fair market value of the business, it can be disastrous, both financially and for family relationships.

So how do we deal with our biggest competitor – the kids?  We don’t even try.  But we can participate in helping even intra-family business transitions to be smoother and more successful by assisting the owner to establish a true market value of the business.  And who knows?  If the kids want to sell the business someday, we’ll be there for them!

About A Neumann & Associates, LLC

A Neumann & Associates, LLC is a professional mergers & acquisitions and business brokerage firm having assisted business owners and buyers in the business valuation and business transfer process through its affiliations for the past 30 years. With an A+ Better Business Bureau rating, the company has senior trusted professionals with a deep knowledge based in multiple field offices along the East Coast and has performed hundreds of business valuations in its history. The firm’s competitive transaction fees are based on successfully completing transactions. For more information, please contact A Neumann & Associates at 732-872-6777 or

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Andrey O, Investor

“Finally enjoying retirement after recently selling my business using the services of A Neumann & Associates. Joe Oddo provided the conduit to a successful transaction. Joe knew when to inject input and when to simply listen and allow the buyers to vent, step back and regroup. The outcome met our expectations and got us to the finish line, which included my staying with the company six months in order for the buyers to get their footing and keep our workforce in the loop. He helped at every step by providing his expert guidance & resources. Thank you!”

Emily Parker Myers, Co-Owner - Myers McRae

“I had been in touch with Karin and Gary from A Neumann & Associates regarding some opportunities and was looking forward to meeting with them. Hence, when they organized a seminar in Princeton, NJ, I was quick to sign up. The seminar was very informative as the team walked the attendees through various scenarios and referenced real life buying/selling situations they had been through. The sessions by Gary, Karin and Achim were crisp and focused and brought clarity to potential seller and buyers. I strongly recommend the team and look forward to continue working with them.”

Gaurav Tyagi

“Thank you for your Event on "How to value, Sell, and Buy A Business for Maximum Profit" and the insight into ANA’s approach on what is involved in the Business Exit for sellers. Garys Hervieiou's "Business Valuation", Achim's "Deal structure" presentation and Karin’s "Preparing the Package" are real street knowledge shared. They answered attendees questions which makes it more interesting for learning from others. Great for small businesses like us. The presentations were totally worth our time and travel for the event to Princeton, NJ from Rockville MD. Ravi Bhutani, President, CIPS”

Ravi Bhutani

“Gary, this is to thank you for an excellent job done in selling our business. We could never have done it without your professional expertise, dedication and time put in without reservation to make it happen. We will gladly and highly recommend you to anybody in our position.  It was a pleasure to work with you.”

Pat Iammatteo, Owner

“Your vetting is simply outstanding, among the best I've seen from a broker.”

Eric H., Investor

“I recently contacted A. Neumann and Associates about getting a valuation of my business done. I spoke with Marc, who explained the process in detail. After meeting with Marc in order to get a clear understanding of my business, and what I was hoping to accomplish. His patience in answering all my questions and his knowledge of the proper way to market my business gave me great confidence that this is the firm I will be using to sell my business for max value. Working with Marc at A Neumann & Associates was very easy and professional. I did not know all that was going to be involved in selling my business but they helped me through the process. What I thought was going to be a just another one of those pushy sales companies was just the opposite. Polite, knowledgeable, and a pleasure to talk to and deal with. I highly recommend this firm to anybody who wants to sell now or down the road. Marc not only knows his stuff, but actually is a real nice guy.”

Double Diamond

“Used A Neumann & Associates to sale my business. could not imagine having done it with out the patience and experience Gary provided. Thanks Gary,”

Dennis Frazier

“Working with Marc and his company was a pleasure. What I thought was going to be a just another one of those pushy sales companies was just the opposite. Polite, knowledgeable, and a pleasure to talk to and deal with. Marc handled most of the interaction and he has one of the greatest demeanors. Again, it was a pleasure working with him and his firm.”

Douglas DiCeglio

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If you are considering selling your business, please contact us to learn more about our comprehensive service spectrum. Our experienced professionals will answer all your questions about selling a privately held business in complete confidentiality. Please fill out our contact form, or call us at 732-872-6777. We will contact you directly and will never identify ourselves to your employees.

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