Important Considerations in Transferring or Selling a Firm

In every accounting firm, there comes a time when managing partners will change for various reasons such as retirement. The firm needs to be passed on to new owners, whether through an internal transfer or an external sale. In this interesting episode, Dan McMahon, Founder and Managing Partner of Integrated Growth Advisors, shares some of the ways in which IGA prepares firms for the inevitable, as well as strategies for increasing their value prior to the firm changing hands.

Dan McMahon is the Founder and Managing Partner of Integrated Growth Advisors. His career includes over 25 years in Chicago and New England as a CPA and business advisor with focused experience on serving professional services firms. Prior to founding IGA, he served as an Audit Partner and the Partner-in-Charge of Sales and Marketing for a regional public accounting firm. He advises clients in the public accounting profession on firm governance, sustainability, generational transferability, and building increased equity valuation. Dan also provides mergers and acquisitions advisory services to business owners including the leaders of CPA firms.

"The firm that brings the most strategic value to the equation and with the competition of many firms out there that are looking to potentially transfer, that’s the one that’s going to be gobbled up first.”

What You'll Learn From This Episode:

  • IGA’s main focus
  • How an aging CPA population impacts mergers and acquisitions
  • What is happening to the average age of partners in accounting firms
  • How aging partners are affecting the value of firms
  • How IGA defines success for its clients
  • The point at which firms should be requesting IGA’s assistance
  • Triggering events that lead to IGA being called in
  • How IGA views transferring internally vs. selling externally
  • Some of the 18 different drivers in a firm that need to be considered in assessing the business
  • Goals to bear in mind when preparing for a sale or transfer
  • Why it is important to keep an open dialogue
  • How to handle the imperfections and weaknesses in a firm
  • Why structure and governance are essential
  • Some of the ways in which IGA helps clients increase the value of their firms
  • The terrible “five-letter word” that accountants detest
  • The importance of being strategic in billing
  • Why CPAs often undervalue what their clients receive from them
  • When it is a good idea to bring in a business developer
  • How being trained in improv has impacted Dan’s work

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