Scalable Businesses With Growth Opportunities In Short Supply
In November 2021 Platform 1 conducted a market survey titled: Attitudes To Entering Business Ownership Following Covid 19.
Data from this survey of potential future business acquirers shows that despite the pandemic, there is still not enough scalable businesses available. Over 65% of all respondents mentioned that they were finding it hard to find a scalable business with growth opportunities. This increased to 77% when measured only against those exclusively looking for a business. They also mentioned that many of the businesses available were too small.
When questioned on whether the pandemic was impacting their decision to buy into a business, only 38% said it had made them reconsider.
When asked whether buying into a business gradually would interest them more than an outright purchase, 65% said yes, while 32% said both options would suit them. The remaining 3% said no or not applicable.
Platform 1 Director Mike Warmington said “One of the more common questions we get from people looking at opportunities, is that scalable businesses are in short supply. People leaving a successful corporate career are wanting to apply their skills to innovate and grow a business, often using technology as an enabler. They are not looking to simply replace their salary.”
The open rate on opportunity emails to the Platform 1 potential acquirer database has increased from 33% to 40% from June to October 2021. Click through rates have nearly tripled, reinforcing the strong interest from prospective business owners in looking for “skin in the game”. It could well be the perfect time for owners to exit while the talent pool of entrepreneurs is available.
At the same time there has been a noticeable lift in interest from business owners looking at exit strategies. Many baby boomer owners are simply over this environment and “Covid Fatigue” has set in. Platform 1’s newly engaged client numbers have more than doubled in the second half of 2021, compared to the first half of the year, despite lockdowns.
Mike Warmington stated “Some owners were ready last year and delayed their plans for a perceived better time. It’s now nineteen months later and there is a realisation that they need to get on with it so they have come back to us. “
While there has been talk for ten years or more of the tsunami of business owners looking to exit, we still have not seen the rush. The reasons to wait are decreasing and we expect the current elevated activity in the business exit space to dramatically increase in 2022.