DevReady PodcastExit Like a Pro: Kerry Boulton’s Expert Tips for Maximizing Business Value – EP 145 – DevReady Podcast

In this episode of the DevReady Podcast, host Anthony Sapountzis chats with Kerry Boulton-Holdsworth, a seasoned Value Builder & Exit Strategy Coach from The Exit Strategy Group. Kerry, a Certified Exit Planning Advisor, and former EOS Implementer, shares invaluable insights on crafting successful business exit strategies. Tune in to learn how to build value, ensure readiness, and navigate the complexities of business exits.

Kerry shares her journey from conducting a management buyout to becoming an Exit Strategy Coach. She highlights the importance of having an exit strategy for any business, recounting how reading “Business Plans that Win $$$” helped her and her husband raise funds and plan for their business’s future. Kerry discusses the economic fluctuations and stresses the necessity of being prepared for unexpected opportunities, such as selling their real estate business when a lucrative offer arose. She concludes by advising business owners to always be ready for sale, focusing on growing for value, and ensuring readiness across business, financial, and personal aspects.

Kerry emphasizes balancing business, financial, and personal readiness in exit strategy planning. She discusses opportunities for acquiring businesses owned by baby boomers and integrating them for exponential growth. Sharing her experience of retiring and reinventing herself, Kerry highlights the importance of having a purpose beyond business. She stresses the need for thorough financial planning, stakeholder consideration, and estate planning to ensure a smooth transition and continued fulfillment post-exit.

Kerry outlines eight key drivers crucial for a successful business exit strategy. These include having well-documented financials, identifying growth markets, mitigating reliance on key personnel, and differentiating the business. She discusses maintaining positive cash flow, ensuring high customer satisfaction, and reducing dependence on the owner. Kerry advises business owners to strategically plan their end game by targeting potential buyers and setting up robust systems and processes to support future growth and stability.

Additionally, Kerry highlights the differences in valuation between startups, particularly SaaS businesses, and traditional businesses, noting that SaaS companies are often valued based on revenue, while traditional businesses are valued on EBIT. She emphasizes understanding and mitigating risks, such as customer and people concentration, to enhance business value. Kerry also advocates for integrating recurring revenue models, like maintenance arrangements or subscription services, to increase business attractiveness to potential buyers. She mentions John Warrillow’s book, “The Automatic Customer,” and offers a free assessment on her website for business owners to evaluate their value drivers.

Topics Covered
  • Kerry’s Professional Journey
  • Importance of Exit Strategy
  • Business, Financial, and Personal Readiness
  • Building Value in Businesses
  • Valuation Differences between SaaS and Traditional Businesses
  • Recurring Revenue Models
  • Strategic Planning and Readiness for Startups
  • Tools and Resources for Business Owners
Important Time Stamps
  • From Business Owner to Exit Planning Pro: Kerry Boulton’s Story (0:06 – 6:44)
  • The Essential Checklist: Preparing Your Business for a Successful Exit (6:45 – 15:47)
  • The Eight Key Drivers for a Successful Business Exit with Kerry Boulton (15:48 -23:57)
  • Getting Your Structure Right: Key Tips for Attracting Investors (23:58 – 30:11)
  • Understanding Business Valuation: Advice from an Exit Strategy Coach (30:12 – 33:15)
  • The Automatic Customer: Recurring Revenue Strategies for Your Business (33:16 – 35:34)

Kerry Boulton-Holdsworth | LinkedIn

The Exit Strategy Group| Website

10 Myths Every Business Owner Must Know Before Creating Their Exit Strategy | Kerry Boulton

Are You Ready To Get Rich, Get Out And Get On With Enjoying Your Life? | Kerry Boulton

Other Books Mentioned:

  1. Business Plans That Win $$$: Lessons from the MIT Enterprise Forum
  2. The Automatic Customer: Creating a Subscription Business in Any Industry
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