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2016 – The time to realise maximum value? 

by Simon Ward

Published: May, 2016

Submission: May, 2016


The turn of the year is often a time for reflection and review.For business founders and owners this might be the one time of the year when the phone rings (less) and the inbox is more sparse.As we reach the close of 2015 here are some thoughts for the entrepreneur or founder to ponder upon:

  • The competition of the private equity market– A continuing resurgence in the private equity market spurred on by uninvested funds and investor pressures means that private houses are now regularly outbidding strategic trade acquirors. Clearly a competitive market delivers maximum value for owners on disposal, however it has also opened the way for partial realisation.De-risking via the sale of a stake and then ‘going again’ is a real and tangible option that should be firmly on the mind of the business owner looking to the future.
  • Trade acquirors are active and have deep pockets– Trade buyers from around the world have been more active in 2015 than for many years. Access to funding and competition from private equity vehicles are resulting in trade buyers paying increasingly more attractive prices for the right business. This pressure from private equity houses has also meant that trade buyers are becoming more creative in their deal structuring and approach to working with owners post acquisition.
  • The current UK capital tax environment is as good as gets?– With a £10 million lifetime allowance for entrepreneur’s relief, the system is also very simple. Wealth generators have rightly been able to expect that their efforts will ultimately be rewarded when they realise value.We are, however, all aware of the chancellor’s needs to significantly increase tax receipts and there were certainly rumours of changes prior to the recent Autumn Statement.Whilst these did not come to fruition it is fair to suppose that some reduction in entrepreneurs’s relief may still be on the way in the future.

So, whilst the next couple of weeks will offer some much needed downtime for business founders and owners alike, there is much to ponder.There are economic and commercial reasons to be cheerful – most crucially there are real signs that 2016 is the perhaps the time to take the ultimate strategic decision to realise value.






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