195 Senior Level Advisors in 36 states & Canada, providing exit, transition, and succession planning services to privately held business owners

What Is Pinnacle Equity Solutions

Pinnacle Equity Solutions is a national association of senior-level, professional advisors who are all trained and supported in a common system to deliver high quality, customized solutions to business owners regarding the eventual exit from their privately-held businesses

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Buy John M. Leonetti’s Book

Exiting Your Business, Protecting Your Wealth by John M. Leonetti, CEO of Pinnacle Equity Solutions, Inc.

Exiting Your Business, Protecting Your Wealth
by John M. Leonetti,
CEO of Pinnacle Equity Solutions, Inc.

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What Is "Exit Planning"

Exit planning is not listing your company for sale and finding someone who will pay the highest price (although that step may occur What Is "Exit Planning" | Pinnacle Equity Solutions - Exit Planning, Succession Planning, Legacy Planninglater in the process). Rather, it is the process of preparing a company and its owner(s) for that ultimate sale or future transition. The fact is that most attempted business sales end up as failed engagements. We believe that the reason for this high failure rate is because the owner and the company were not well prepared for the transaction. As the chart below indicates, exit planning is most effective when it is conducted over a number of years prior to an envisioned ‘exit transaction’. Pinnacle’s model for exit planning includes the three (3) “p’s” of exit planning: (1) Planning, (2) Preparing, and (3) Passing it on.

What Is "Exit Planning" | Pinnacle Equity Solutions - Exit Planning, Succession Planning, Legacy Planning

The three (3) steps to exit planning are detailed below:

  1. Planning is the first step that we recommend for designing your business exit. This includes having an assessment completed for your ‘exit readiness’. This Summary or Comprehensive Assessment looks at the value of your business, when and how you can receive that value, who will run the business in the future, and what transaction structure is most appropriate for the owner to reach their personal and business goals.
  2. After the planning phase we recommend that a preparation phase follows. The preparation can take either a few months or a few years to complete. The planning phase indicates what needs to be completed in order to achieve a successful business sale or transition. Of the dozens of items that need to be addressed, a few include growing the value of the business, recruiting and hiring senior managers, assessing the owner’s personal take-outs in the business (which includes recasting the financial statements to present to a buyer), establishing a personal plan for the owner to follow to help them transition out active engagement in the company.
  3. Once the planning phase and the preparation phase are complete, it comes time to decide on how you want to pass it on to the next owner. Do you want to sell for the highest price? Are you looking to transfer to family? Do you want your management team to have a chance to own the company? Although many of these ‘exit options’ are discussed and analyzed in the planning phase, now is the time to decide which path you will go down with your business exit. It is time to implement and this will include many professionals who may or may not have been included in the planning or the preparation phases.

As stated above, exit planning is a process to prepare you, the owner(s) for the largest financial and emotional transaction of your lives.

Pinnacle works with owners who value this approach and believe that being well prepared for this type of event is far better than relying solely on luck or chance to deliver an optimal solution for this substantial event in your lives. Our Certified Business Exit Consultants™ are not only the highest trained and best supported to deliver these services to you, but every CBEC™ holder also has the experience required to guide you through this important process.