Chapter 10Building Long‐Term Value

If you've survived the gauntlet of the last nine chapters, made it out with your business, and didn't get wrapped around the wheel of some regulatory agency, well then, congratulations! You've just made it through the toughest obstacle course in business and you've now got a smooth‐running, leaned‐down business with an affordable balance sheet. You've also picked up a little scar tissue from the journey, but it looks good on you. Wear it with pride. As the thrill of the initial cash crisis and the grind of the turnaround both fade into memory, you've got a clean slate and a bright future. It's the first time in a long time that you've been able to take a full breath of fresh air and reflect on life.

You may be exhausted and simply wish to sell the business and move on. Or maybe your kids are now interested, or maybe you'd like to do an ESOP (Employee Stock Ownership Program) sale, or sell to your managers through an MBO (management buyout). Or, perhaps, you're enjoying the business again and really like the idea of holding it for the next 5–10 years. All these options and more are available to a well-run company with strong, predictable, and recurring profits, good management systems, and a strong balance sheet. Said another way, by maintaining your momentum coming out of a turnaround and being able to post 3+ years of strong, audited, earnings, then you really have every opportunity available to you as a business owner. What creates the ...

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