Sell Your Business

Your Employees Are the Best Buyers. They Know How It Works & They Can Grow It.

Sell Your Business to Your Employees

Are you considering a succession for your business? By selling to your employees and converting your business into a cooperative, you can ensure its legacy, reward a loyal workforce, and continue to keep the company going and contributing to its local community and economy.

Benefits of Converting to a Cooperative:

  • Legacy Preservation: Keep your business thriving with those who know it best.
  • Employee Motivation: Boost morale and productivity by giving employees a stake in the business.
  • Community Impact: Strengthen local economies and create stable jobs.
  • Smooth Transition: Enjoy a smoother transition with loyal employees who understand the business & are invested in its success.

Process of Converting a Business to a Co-Op

We specialize in helping business owners like you transition to a cooperative model, ensuring a legacy of success and stability. With our comprehensive support and expertise, your business can thrive under new ownership while continuing to serve your community. There are typically 5 stages/steps to the conversion process. Usually in the following order below but not always. Variation & overlap are common. Each conversion process is unique. Some are fast & some are slow.

Stage 1: Exploration

  • Learn about Co-Op structure, governance, and operations.
  • Learn about ways to fund the sale of the business.
  • Talk to business advisors, financial advisors, friends, family, etc.
  • Begin a dialogue with workers who would lead and operate the business as a Co-Op. This is often the beginning stage for a transition team; sometimes called a buy-out committee.

Stage 2: Assessment

  • Often called the Feasibility Study stage.
  • The businesses’ books and finances are examined and evaluated.
  • Any issues/aspects regarding real property, IP, trademarks, existing business contracts, etc. are known/understood.
  • At least one valuation for the business is produced by a qualified expert.
  • A transition team/buy-out committee made up of current workers members is formed. They are working in cooperation with the owner(s) & evaluating the feasibility of the conversion and their ability to run the business as a Co-Op.

Stage 3: Structure

  • Often called the Due Diligence stage.
  • A transition plan by the transition team takes form. Current worker skills are assessed. Roles, and specifically leadership roles in the Co-Op are identified as well as potential candidates for each. And the updated business plan continues to be worked on.
  • Draft Co-Op by-laws and governing structure and process documents are written.
  • The best financial structure of the sale is determined, understood, & tentatively agreed to. Funding sources are identified and applications are started if applicable.
  • The sale price/buy-out amount is presented and tentatively agreed to.

Stage 4: Form

  • The Co-Op is formally created and preparations are made to complete the sale and transfer the business.
  • Defined management and leadership roles are filled.
  • A Board has formed and is operating. By-laws are adopted.
  • Incorporating documents are filed. And patronage model and structure are confirmed.
  • Any member recuitment begins here.

Stage 5: Completion

  • Often called the Closing stage…very similar to the final stage of buying/selling a home.
  • Sale and Purchase Agreements are negotiated, finalized and signed.
  • Sale financing structure if applicable is in place and finalized. Buy-out payment(s) are made.

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