Your Exit Strategy

Supporting you when you decide to sell.

Our Approach

Our vision is to improve the wealth of all those we interact with.

We understand that selling your business is not an easy decision or one that you want to rush into. You may have spent your life building your business and building positive relationships with your clients that trust you.

Our approach is simple. We want to ensure that anybody selling their business shares the same values with the fair treatment of clients being central to everything they do. For this to work, each party has to get to know each other and understand how each other operate.

Watch the video below to see what Peter Kajzer-Hughes, a retired IFA, had to say about working with us.

  • We calculate an indicative valuation, which represents today’s value of the fees and commission that might be earned in the future.
  • In purchasing your future income streams the value of this is influenced by a number of factors.
  • There is no single multiplier of income as the value is based on many variables, such as the age profile of your clients, the average fee income and the additional costs that we will incur will all have an impact on the value that we will attribute to a business.
  • A Restricted Financial Planning business with fee income of £100,000;
  • This comprises on-going income of £75,000 from 75 clients and £25,000 new business from 15 clients;
  • The indicative valuation and maximum loan available to the buyer would be £241,000;
  • This represents a multiple of 3.21x ongoing income
  • An Independent Financial Planning business with fee income of £100,000;
  • This comprises on-going income of £65,000 from 50 clients and £35,000 new business from 15 clients;
  • The indicative valuation and maximum loan available to the buyer would be £173,000;
  • This represents a multiple of 2.66x ongoing income

Business Seller Q&A

Your questions answered.

In 2015, Terry Jordan decided to sell his established IFA business to ensure he could devote more time to other businesses and achieve his goal of retiring within 7 years. Three years on from selling his business, we caught up with Terry to capture his thoughts on his experience with us.

Why did you choose to sell your business to us?
You had a local adviser who knew the area; your ethos is to put the clients first and you wanted to keep the client bank together with one adviser rather than splitting it between several.

How did you feel initially after selling compared to now?
Initially very protective of my clients and how they would be looked after, responsible for them but less anxious after time went on, relieved!
What was the hardest part about selling your business?
Letting go of a business that I had spent over 20 years building.
Did we maintain contact and communicate with you?
During the whole transition period I was able to speak to you if I had any concerns or particular questions and I was given great support during the process.
From your client’s view, how did we help the client through the transition?
It was important to reassure the clients that there would be a seamless transition and that I would still be available in the background if they had any queries and to support the adviser.

It was also essential that the adviser did not just walk in with a hard-sell approach and immediately change their investments as this would completely destroy the relationship and their trust in my judgement. It was also important to him to appreciate the reasons why we had invested their funds in the portfolio choices I had made on their behalf.
How would you summarise the experience?
The experience had its ups and downs – I was obviously worried how my clients would react to the change and whether they would have the same faith in the new adviser to continue investing rather than jumping ship. However, it was comforting to have the continued contact with you which was reassuring and I definitely felt that I had made the right decision in entrusting my business with you.

If someone was thinking about retiring and selling their business to you I would tell them to definitely do it!

Acquisition Process

Understand what happens and when.

  • 1
    Understand Your Business
  • 2
    Agreement in Principle
  • 3
    Transfer Plan
  • 4
    The first stage of the sales process is to prepare sufficient information about your business to enable you to have substantive discussions with us. We will need to know:

  • The background to you and your business;
  • Your business model;
  • The services that you provide to your clients and the fees you charge for these;
  • The systems and processes that support your business;
  • Your investment process;
  • Your future intentions, including how you will support the transfer of clients to the buyer.
  • As well as providing us with an opportunity to find out more about your business, it will enable you to assess whether there is a good match for you and your clients with us. This is an important consideration you, as you can expect that part of the payment you receive for the sale of your Practice will be based on the success of the client transfer.

    At this stage you will also need to provide some anonymous client data in order that we can understand how your recurring revenue is spread across your clients. You will need to invest some time in preparing this information as it is the key to you realising the full potential of the sale of your business. We will ask you to sign a Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA) that will enable us to request certain financial, client, compliance and regulatory information. Once we have received this information it will enable us to make an informed decision on how your Practice will fit within the Group and the terms we are prepared to offer.
    Once we have reached an agreement in principle we will start the process of preparing for completion. The first stage is to understand the terms and conditions that we have agreed, including:

  • The amount the we will pay for your business;
  • The percentage that will be paid on completion;
  • The conditions for payment of the balance;
  • The terms on which you will work with us to ensure a smooth transfer for your clients;
  • Any deferral period if you chose to continue to build your practice under our brand prior to completion.
  • This information is required to prepare the legal agreement between you and us. Whilst we prepare for completion, you will need to work closely with us in agreeing the Transfer Plan that sets out how we will integrate the servicing to your clients.
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    Ensuring continuity for clients is vital for the success of any transaction. The Transfer Plan will include details of what has been agreed as this is an important part of the transfer process. The plan includes a wide range of areas and, aside from demonstrating that there is a robust process for the transfer of clients, is a useful checklist to ensure that we have considered all aspects of integrating your Practice. The key areas covered are:

  • A summary of the due diligence completed by us;
  • A gap analysis to assess the differences between the way the ours Practices are operated, including the on-going services provided to clients;
  • An assessment of any additional resources that we will require, including software licences, and any training that the we and our staff will need to undertake;
  • An assessment of the key risks of the purchase and how these will be mitigated;
  • How the transfer will be communicated to clients, including a structured plan for handover meetings for key clients;
  • A summary of your role post completion.
  • You will need to fulfil your responsibilities under the Transfer Plan that you have agreed with us. In certain circumstances we may agree to your authorisation as a Financial Planner remaining in place for a period of time. You be required to sign a “no compete” agreement in respect of the clients within your practice that you are selling as part of the legal agreement with us.
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    As there will always be an element of uncertainty when purchasing a future revenue stream, it is normal for payments to be staged to mitigate the risk for us. The maximum advanced on completion is up to 80% of the purchase price, however generally the initial payment is between 70-75% or the agreed purchase price.

    The remainder of the agreed purchase price will be deferred until 24 months after completion, at which point your final payment will be due to you. You will receive this payment one month later to allow time for it to be calculated. During this 24-month period you will be responsible for any indemnity commission claw backs and other debts due under your current contract. This will include the payment of any Professional Indemnity Insurance excess for upheld complaints.

    On completion, we will instruct providers and fund managers to transfer the servicing of clients from you to us. This process, commonly known as novation, can take several weeks to complete. During this transition period you will be responsible for transferring any sold ongoing income you receive on our behalf.
For more details about selling your business, please get in touch.

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