Editorial Advisory Board: November 2019

November 15, 2019 -  By
Editorial Advisory Board graphic (Graphic: Landscape Management)

Graphic: LM staff

What’s your best advice for landscape company owners looking to exit their businesses?

Landscape Professionals

Richard Bare
Arbor-Nomics Turf
Norcross, Ga.

“If I were trying to sell my business, I would call one of the knowledgeable brokers that specializes in these types of sales and get him busy smiling and dialing!”

Paul Fraynd
Sun Valley Landscaping
Omaha, Neb.

“Read the book, Built to Sell! Create sustainable business models that are process-driven and not dependent on ‘superstars’ or owners. It’s also important to consider the valuations for different service offerings, i.e. maintenance over design/build projects.”

Luke Henry
ProScape Lawn & Landscaping Services
Marion, Ohio

“Landscape company owners looking to exit their business should be planning a few years in advance, and consult an exit planning professional.”

Chris Joyce
Joyce Landscaping
Cape Cod, Mass.

“Landscape company owners looking to exit their business should be planning a few years in advance, and consult an exit planning professional.”

Aaron Katerberg
Grapids Irrigation
Grand Rapids, Mich.

“When looking to sell your business make sure you explore the possibilities. Know your EBIDTA and have it evaluated. Look into ESOPs. Build relationships with others in your industry and market and talk to national firms.”

Bryan Stolz
Winterberry Landscape & Garden Center
Southington, Conn.

“Start planning well before your anticipated exit date. I’ve worked with several people going through this process in a variety of industries, and across the board, everyone says that they wish they started working on this year’s before they actually did. If you start far enough in advance, you can build your business plan to generate the return you need. Whether this is from strengthening nonowner management, changing reinvestment thresholds or acquisitions, there are things you can do to make your company more attractive to potential buyers. There are several thresholds that can be reached that result in increases in seller multiples. So, investing in the company to reach those thresholds can yield exceptional returns. This is a process I’ve heard described as 2+2=5, when the original value of the business plus the value of the additional investment bump your company into a stronger multiple range.”

Industry Consultants

Marty Grunder
The Grow Group
Dayton, Ohio

“Whether you are planning to exit your business or not, you should be setting it up to run with the least amount of reliance on the owner. A business is worth a lot more if it can run without the owner. That’s a tough job; however, it can be done. I’ve done it and I’m not very smart!”

Phil Harwood
Grow the Bench
Grand Rapids, Mich.

“Start the process early, hire the best advisors and be realistic with valuation.”

Kevin Keho
3PG Consulting
Laguna, Calif.

“Build a team of people who can consistently drive EBITDA with a lot of recurring maintenance contract work.”

Jeffrey Scott
Jeffrey Scott Consulting
Trumbull, Conn.

“Don’t wait till it’s too late when you are forced to sell. If you think you want to sell in 7-10 years, then be ready to sell in 3 years. Get expert guidance; you will likely only do this once.”

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