MAU 36 | Maximizing Business Value

 

The more you know where your business stands, the better you can implement strategies that will help boost its performance. This is why business valuation is very necessary for every business to go through. An expert on this front, host, Domenic Rinaldi, talks with Darren Mize, one of the principals of one of the premier valuation companies in the US, GCF Valuations. Together, they go through the importance of getting a business valuation, exploring the process that goes with it. Sharing some of the success stories, Darren takes us across the work of GCF, along with his career, of delivering outstanding results across all industries. If you want to understand how businesses are valued, then tune into this episode as Darren shares the things business owners (whether buyer or seller) should be thinking to maximize the value of their business and more!

Listen to the podcast here:

Maximizing The Value Of Your Business With Darren Mize

M&A Unplugged community, if you want to understand how businesses are valued, then you are in luck. Joining me is one of the principals of GCF Valuations, Darren Mize. Darren is someone I’ve known for years and I can only imagine that thousands of companies he has valued across all industries in that timeframe. GCF Valuation is one of the premier valuation companies in the US. They have had a hand in writing the standard operating procedures, which lenders much follow when using a business valuation over an SBA 7(a) business acquisition loan. GCF is known in the valuation industry for its deep expertise in exceptional deliverables. GCF has multiple offices across the country with a fourteen-person staff that includes five accredited business appraisers. We’ve involved Darren and his group in several situations throughout the years and they have always delivered outstanding results. Darren, welcome to the M&A Unplugged Podcast. Do you have any idea how many valuations you’ve done through the years?

First of all, thanks for having me, Domenic. It’s a pleasure to be with you. I couldn’t give you an actual number, but I would tell you that we’ve probably averaged anywhere from 1,500 to 2,500 valuations a year. A good amount is going on there, that’s for sure.

It was a little tongue in cheek, but I know you do a lot of volumes. You’ve seen a lot of situations. Can you give everybody a little more background on GCF, how you started this and where you’re at?

All this started about a number of years ago. My younger brother and I were looking for something to do and he happened to pick up a job with a brokerage firm in Tampa, Florida. They hired him to help them appraise the businesses that they were trying to list. It became pretty evident that this was a need or a demand in that particular industry. As we did our research, especially around the State of Florida, there were plenty of business brokerage offices around that state and around the Southeast that were in need of these services. That’s how we got into the business. We started GCF back then to serve business brokers and it evolved into something much larger than we’d ever expected. Starting with a conference that we did in Clearwater, Florida which was at the time, one of the first SBA lending groups out there to start doing SBA loans. They asked us if we could do a business evaluation for one of their loans. We said, “Sure.” As it turns out, that’s what put us on the map. It’s been a good ride for the last number of years and the volume continues to increase. We’re excited about what we’ve been able to put together over the years. We certainly have a great staff to help us with that.

Being in the community, I can say you have set yourselves apart. You’re the gold standard when it comes to valuations. I know the folks that need this work point to your time and time again. You hinted at it. You’ve gone way beyond doing valuations for brokers and M&A intermediaries. You’re also doing them for banks. I’m going to interview your brother and we’re going to talk about the bank process, but you’re coming at it from both sides. You’re doing it for sellers and buyers and then the banks are calling on you to validate a valuation as well.

They are, and not surprisingly, you’ll find that we see a lot of the clients that we work with on the frontend of that process and also on the backend of the process as well. We see a lot of those individual buyers that are acquiring these businesses going through the SBA lending process. We ended up seeing them with our SBA lending clients as well. It’s an interesting process to see from start to finish. Luckily for us, that’s given us an incredible amount of experience to follow it through with the clients that we work with.

When you reduce the financial risk, your multiples are going to increase. Click To Tweet

That’s got to be interesting if a broker brings you in and gets you involved in doing a valuation upfront on a business to maybe many months or 1 or 2 years later, see that same business come back around and the bank ordering evaluation. Hopefully, there are few surprises. Knowing what I know about this industry, they probably are.

We know what to expect. Going back to the experience of being a part of the process, both in the beginning and at the end of it, when the transaction closes and it gets alone. The experience and understanding of how those process works provide us with the ability to help coach along the way and to try to help set expectations as to what to look for both from a seller’s perspective, a buyer’s perspective and even a bank’s perspective. We do see some surprises from time-to-time, but they’re not as much as they used to be.

As a reference, we’re going to talk to your brother about the banking side. Why don’t you and I spend some time talking about valuations from a business owner and a buyer perspective? Why don’t we tackle those one at a time? Why don’t we start on the owner’s side? In your experience when it comes to valuations, what are the top things that business owners should be thinking about to maximize the value of their business? When you get it and you look at the file, you’re giving them the top multiple, they’re getting the highest valuation.

Some things that are in their control and some things are not. You want to focus on the things that are in your control. If you go back to the premise of what drives value, when it comes down to it, there are lots of things that have an impact on the value of a company. The two key components that we like to try to focus on with our clients are cashflow and risk. Starting with the things that you have control over, those are the two ingredients to the puzzle there that will get you from point A to point B. If you want to try to provide yourself with the ability to help get you to a number that you’re looking for, cashflow being the financial strength of the company, if you want to get into adjustments to income statements, we can do that. The value of the business is being driven by the company’s financial performance and then also the risk that the company has within its particular industry and in general. When you look at it from that perspective, it’s a simplified equation. You want to maximize your cashflow and you want to reduce the risk as much as you can. When you can put those two together in that format, you can truly maximize the value of the company.

Those are two great foundational points to dive into. Why don’t we unpack those a little bit? Why don’t we talk a little bit about cashflow and then we can go over and talk about risk? When you talk about cashflow, what are the key components that owners should be thinking about so that they’re putting that piece of their business in the best light?

The one thing that we all clearly understand when it comes to privately-held businesses is that each business owner is doing the best that he or she can do to minimize the tax burden. When you file a tax return, you may have some expenses inside that tax return that could well be either not operating or something related directly to the owner. The first thing that you want to be able to do, and I would suggest that if you’re going to do this right, you need about three years to do it. You want to clean up your income statement so that when you look at a one-year profit and loss statement or a one-year tax return, you have as little in the way of financial adjustments as possible. That’s the first thing that you need to do.

Sometimes that takes a while because there’s a lot of co-mingling of personal and business expenses inside of that financial statement that you want to try to clean up. That’s the first thing that you need to focus on is getting that financial statement clean. What you’re doing is one, you’re eliminating the information and support that you’re going to have to provide somebody that’s going to look at that financial statement. Two, you’re essentially reducing your financial risk at the same time. That would be the first common denominator that I would focus on when it comes to the value and financial statements.

MAU 36 | Maximizing Business Value

Maximizing Business Value: The value of the business is being driven by the company’s financial performance and the risk that the company has within its particular industry and in general.

 

The natural pushback there is when you clean that stuff up, the tax burden on a yearly basis goes up for the owner. They’re going to be showing potentially much more income. They’re going to be paying higher taxes. The net effect, if I could distill what you’re saying here, is that they’re going to be paid much more for their business if they clean those aspects out.

If you want to put it into a simplistic understanding of it, you can either have those expenses inside your financial statements, reduce your tax burden and not pay as much tax and gain your value that way. You can clean up your financial statements, remove all that excess, pay your tax and pay it over the course for the next 2 to 3 years and ultimately gain more value in the sale of your company. It comes down to a personal choice. At the end, a lot of people try to do both and you can’t do both. You have to be clear as to what your objective is. That’s why I always suggest 2 or 3 years in advance, you’ve got to figure out how you want to tackle this. If you’re looking to maximize the value of your business, the only way that you’re going to have to do that is you’re going to have to pay some tax. That’s the nature of what you’re dealing with.

You’re going to pay it upfront or are you going to pay it later on? The argument for later on is you’re getting many multiples of those dollars that you show in profit adjusted EBIDA versus not getting those multiples if you’re taking the benefit of not paying the taxes as you go along.

You’re increasing your cashflow, your profitability, and your profit margin. Those are all that we’ll call negative risk factors, meaning that you’re reducing the risk of the financial side of the equation. When you reduce that risk, your multiples are going to increase as a result of that.

These financial adjustments, they’re not all created equal. Some are easy to show and many of the banks will accept some of them. Some get a lot murkier. Any guidance there as far as financial adjustments that increase your expenses, things maybe you should steer away from?

I don’t know that there are things that you can steer away from. As a business owner, you have the capability of paying for personal items through your company credit card, your company, a checkbook. In a perfect world, you want to stay away from all of that. You would want to run the business like a publicly-traded company. You want to have strong profitability every single year. You want to pay your tax and be clean. Going back to what we were talking about, the cleaner the books the more value you’re going to see in the company when it comes to those cashflow adjustments. They’re all pretty common. If you look at the garden variety business owner in the private sector, you’re looking at things like automobile, travel, entertainment.

You’ve got some family members that may be paying. You may be paying a salary to you either work there or don’t work at all. You may be paying for certain home-related expenses through the company, especially if you have another home office that you run office supplies through. As long as we’ve been doing this, I don’t see anything out there that’s too uncommon. The one thing that we always try to stress, however, is that when it comes to the item that you’re trying to add back, meaning the expense that you’re trying to remove, you have to be able to see it before you can remove it. If it’s there, you can take it out. If it’s not there, you can’t. Some people fail to recognize that.

Maybe we could talk a little bit about the balance sheet as well. We do spend an awful lot of time on the income statements. What I have found over the years is not enough people to spend the time and effort on their balance sheet to make sure that it’s clean and depicts how the business operates.

The balance sheet can be another form of financial strength for the company. Depending upon the business that you’re in, your balance sheet may be small, it could be big. If you look at service-based businesses, you look at CPAs and insurance agencies and those service-related companies. You’re not going to see much on there, maybe some desks and some chairs. Whereas when you’re dealing with transport businesses and companies that deal with heavy machinery and equipment, whether you build it, sell it, you might find that the balance sheet is much larger as a result of those items. The one thing that you always will see, however, is you’re going to have assets and you’re going to have liabilities. It’s the same thing as an income statement. You want to remove anything non-related to the company. It could be personal loans, whether you’re receiving them as an owner or you’re giving them to the company as an owner. Any investments that aren’t related to the company, life insurance policies that aren’t related to the company you want to remove. You can take the same exercise here by removing those items to make your balance sheet again as clean as you can get it.

The cleaner the books, the more value you're going to see in the company when it comes to those cashflow adjustments. Click To Tweet

There are many other things to talk about in a balance sheet, but we can go on and on. I had an accountant on, a principal from a firm here in Chicago not too long ago. He gave me a statistic that blew me away. He said that in 90% of the deals that they’re involved in, the inventory becomes an issue as it relates to the networking capital. Somehow, inventory wasn’t measured the right way. They weren’t doing physicals and through their balance sheet completely out of whack, which then has an impact on the income statement potentially. It’s all of those things, making sure that you have a well-groomed, balance sheet that accurately reflects the business.

When it comes to small businesses as you can probably imagine, most small business owners don’t have time to put in certain times of management protocols for the balance sheet, especially when you’re dealing with lots of machinery and inventory particularly. The good news about having a business valued in advance of going to market or trying to determine what you’re looking for in terms of value, an appraiser can pick up on things like that. When you’re looking at a business that’s not performing as strong as it should be based on its cashflow and its profitability, sometimes you can look to the balance sheet to find out why. For many reasons, you’ll find that they’re not adequately using their equipment or their inventory properly. You also might find some of that stuff, they probably aren’t even using it all. At that point, then you’ve got to remove it. That does help out a little bit.

I know that in the valuations that we’ve done with you, a common question that you ask us is, “What about the equipment? Is it all in use? Is there excess equipment? Do they have enough to facilitate the ongoing sales of the business or the current run rate?” Those are all important aspects.

It all comes down to developing a company that is as efficient as possible. A lot of people assume that having lots of machinery and equipment and lots of tangible assets make the company better and make it bigger, when in fact it doesn’t. You’re looking for a business that generates as much cashflow as possible with as little as possible. When you’re looking at the asset column of the balance sheet, you don’t have to have a lot of assets to be a strong company. Always keep that in mind that it’s doing as much as you can with as little as you can be that’s efficient. When you are efficient, value comes from that as well.

Are there other things that we should talk about concerning cashflow or should we move over to risk?

I’ll stop by risk for a little bit. Risk is a perception. There are certain aspects of risk that you can see that you can identify that anybody would agree with. There are certain things that may or may not be in agreement with if you show something to five different people that may have five different opinions on it. Risk is the loose gun here on the equation when it comes to value. You could go back to the idea that you’ve got cashflow, you’ve got risks. Risk is what’s going to drive the value up or down. That’s where you start is looking for risk. It comes in a lot of different forms. From an appraisal standpoint, you’ve probably got 8 or 10 different categories that we would look at to determine how risky a company is or how strong they are.

MAU 36 | Maximizing Business Value

Maximizing Business Value: A lot of people fail to recognize that the single largest value killer when it comes to valuing a privately held company is a concentration of one or more customers.

 

Could you give us a couple of those so we have a sense of what you’re looking at? I know you have a whole questionnaire that you have people fill out that cover a lot of these points. You can drill down if you have to as you’re going through the valuation. Maybe we can unpack a few of these.

I’ll touch on the common ones. When we’re looking at a company as a whole, our full objective is to develop our risk analysis on that individual company. What we’re doing by taking that approach is we are trying to identify how strong or how weak the company is based on its operation and how it performs. Risk becomes a key component of that. When we’re looking at the different risk factors, we look at probably the following 4, 5 or 6 different categories. We look at the company’s dependence on the owner. Dependence on the owners is typically pretty common in a small privately held company. The less dependence on an owner there is, the less risk there is. You want to make sure that you try to identify that. We also look at financial risk. We look at financial trends. How is the business performing over the last 3 to 5 years? Are they moving up or are they moving down?

In addition to that trend, you want to look at how strong their margins are. If they’re generating a lot of cashflow but their margins are below average, that’s a risk that you have to consider. A big risk factor that can’t be ignored is customer concentration or supplier concentration. A lot of people fail to recognize that the single largest value killer when it comes to valuing a privately held company is a concentration of one or more customers. That’s something that we look at. You’ve got other things. Industry risks, economic risks are some of the other things we look at. There are probably 3 or 4 more, but those are the most common ones that most people can relate to.

When you deliver a questionnaire to the owner of the business, they fill it out. How do you drill down on some of these items as a valuation company? You get comfort one way or another so when you get to the bottom-line valuation, you feel good that you’ve taken everything into account.

It’s a double-edged sword because when people engage us to value their business, we’re working with consultants or other people that are working with the business owners themselves. They tend to be in a hurry. Everybody wants to get things done quickly. While we can certainly understand that, we always try to tell our clients that we don’t want to sacrifice quality and accuracy for time. If you end up rushing, you’re going to miss some things. Unfortunately for most people who don’t like our job, we ask a lot of questions and we will ask as many questions as we can ask until we are satisfied with the answer that we’re trying to obtain.

Looking at a set of financial statements and asking, “I see that you’ve increased revenue over the last 3 or 4 years, how come?” They may give you an answer to that, “We’ve added a couple more products.” That doesn’t satisfy our curiosity. We want to know more, we want to be able to explain it. In the valuation report itself, you have to treat it as if somebody who’s reading it doesn’t know anything about this company at all. The detail is what it comes down to it. We won’t release the report at all until we’re comfortable with where we’re at.

We’re launching a new business. It’s going to be all focused on helping business owners and business buyers prepare for their transactions. The mantra is, “Do it early, do it often, get ahead of the curve.” It increases your options. From your perspective as a valuation company, how often do you think an owner of a business should be getting a snapshot value of their business? How often maybe doing a deep dive? 

It depends upon what the ultimate objective of the business owner is. There are lots of different valuations for lots of different purposes. One purpose may be estate planning. Another purpose may be Key Man Life Insurance. Another purpose may be an employee stock ownership plan. Another purpose could be taking the business to market. It does depend upon what the overall objective is for the business owner to determine what to do and how often to do it. I would say as a form of internal management that you would like to have at the value of your business at least once every couple of years so you have a basis and a benchmark to understand what you want to try to accomplish looking forward. The only downside to that is if you don’t have the valuation done on an annual basis, it can be a little bit more costly down the road. If you can afford to do it once a year, it’s going to save you a good amount of money in the long run. At least once every 2 to 3 years is probably a good benchmark to that.

Risk is what's going to drive the value up or down. Click To Tweet

That’s the mantra that we’ve been following. Every couple of years, at least get a snapshot, understand where the business is. Have you moved the needle, especially with some of these risk factors? Some of these risk factors are within your control. You can move the needle on some of these and improve value along the way. A great way to test how the value has been impacted if you’ve been able to improve some of these risk factors.

Think about the fact that many business owners focus on one thing. It’s their top line. They don’t focus on the bottom line a lot. You may find as a business owner that you are doing well. You’ve had your business valued. You’re moving along at an 8% to 10% revenue increase every single year. You believe as a result of that, the value of your business is growing at the same time. You might find that by having a business valuation done once or twice throughout that period, instead of growing with revenue, your profits are going down because your costs are going up. You may not necessarily see that. The ability to be able to determine all aspects of financial strength ties into value. If you’re monitoring that regularly through a business valuation, you have a better sense of management looking forward. That’s important for any business owner.

That’s in the category of you have to know what’s happening at all times. Not all growth is good growth. 

Sometimes we’ll tell people, “I’d rather see your revenue decline in your profits and cashflow go up.” What you’re doing is you’re streamlining the company. You may be getting rid of some unprofitable customers that may be driving a lot of revenue for you, but may not be profitable. To maximize your business, you want to make sure that you pay attention to your top line. At the end of the day, if cashflow and risk are driving the value of your business, the bottom line should be your main focus.

Why don’t we move over to the buyer side of the equation and talk a little bit about what buyers should understand about valuations and approaching a business? 

We’ve been doing this for a long time. The one common thing that I have seen over the years, it has not changed when it comes to buyers and when it comes to sellers too. You could probably put this on both sides of the equation, but from a buyer’s perspective, there is an emotional attachment to buying a business. There’s an emotional Testament to buying anything if you think about it. When it comes to business, the idea of leaving your job, buying your job, working for yourself and having the ability to run your company and to manage your time and schedule is appealing to anybody, especially if you’re going to get paid for it. The one thing that you can’t do when you’re looking at acquiring a business is overpaying for it.

A lot of people are willing to overpay for it because it’s an emotional discussion. It’s an emotional decision. When you’re looking to acquire a business, you have to take the emotion out of it. Otherwise, you could find yourself in a position where you’re overpaying for business and that’s not good for anybody other than the seller. That’s the first thing that I would tell people when they go into this process is you have to have a set of parameters as to what you’re looking for. If you are looking at something that falls outside of that parameter you need to walk away or try to negotiate. That’s the best thing I could do.

Your biggest strength in any negotiation is your willingness and ability to walk away. You get tied up into it emotionally and you could start to make some bad decisions.

You don’t want to do that because when you think about the idea of acquiring, what likely will be your most valuable asset and your worth? You don’t want to make bad decisions when it comes to acquiring a business.

What assumptions do you make from the buyer’s perspective when they’re looking at the value of a business? Do you look at it slightly differently when a buyer comes to you and says, “I need to value this business than what a seller might have done?” 

The process and valuing the business itself that doesn’t change. When we work with buyers, what we’re trying to do is set an expectation of what we believe would be a fair price for the business. If you’re willing to pay a little bit more than what we believe to be fair market value for that business, here’s probably the ceiling that I would go. Here’s probably about as low as an offer I would make. From our standpoint, we don’t have any skin in that game regardless of whether we’re on the sell-side or the buy-side. We want to make sure that what we do is fair for both parties. On the buyer side, you want to walk away feeling pretty good about the transaction and getting a company for as less. In terms of financial outlay as possible. On the seller side, it’s the opposite. It’s the two polar opposites and has to find something right in the middle.

Maximizing Business Value

Maximizing Business Value: To maximize your business, you want to make sure that you pay attention to your top line.

 

Are there assumptions in the model that might change from a seller’s lens to a buyer’s lens? One thing for example that I would point out is the owner replacement salary. Are there some things that you would maybe look at a little bit differently if you’re coming at it from the buyer’s perspective or do you follow a benchmark and guidelines and you do that regardless of what side of the transaction you’re doing a valuation from?

I would say that 90% of what we do is going to be pretty much a guideline to how we process and value a business and what we look at in terms of determining where that value is coming from. However, when working with a buyer, we tend to look at the operation slightly differently in terms of what they can do with it once they get it. Consider the fact that when you’re valuing a business, the value of that business represents an as-is condition. You are buying the business based on what the current owner has done with it, up to that point with everything it’s in place at that time.

A buyer, on the other hand, has the ability to go and look at that same operation and find some things that he or she may be able to improve. There may be certain risk factors that they can improve as soon as they take ownership of the business. Those are the things that we can focus on to help them understand, “When you acquire this business for X, you could conceivably increase your return on investment within the first 2 or 3 months by making a few small changes here or there with your particular type of expertise or knowledge or background.” We do take a little bit of a turn there in assisting a buyer, but from a value standpoint that there isn’t much outside of that we would look at.

Darren, we didn’t get into the weeds here. This is such a big topic. There’s much to cover, but we didn’t talk about the different types of valuations. There are many other things we could go to do. I want to invite you back because we could get into those aspects and that could be illuminating for the M&A Unplugged Community. Are there some parting comments that you would leave to the audience? Keep in mind, we’ve got buyers, sellers, professionals, consultants that typically read.

I would say a couple of things as we leave here. One is that there is a different valuation for every single purpose. Consider the fact that whenever you do valuation that valuation has to identify a single purpose as part of its opening statement. Many people assume that one valuation fits all purposes. It does not. You may value your business, put it on the market for sale, that valuation may not work for an SBA loan and that valuation may not work for an employee stock ownership plan. There are different types of valuation for different purposes. As a buyer or a seller, you have to be knowledgeable about what you’re trying to accomplish because the appraiser will ask you those questions.

Second of all, when it comes to selecting the appraiser, it’s important to understand who you’re working with. Not everybody’s an appraiser and there are lots of people out there that will claim that they will be. You’re looking for somebody with the proper credentials. There are about 4 or 5 different designations in the field that you can feel good about when it comes to selecting an appraiser. Once you find somebody within that baseline of credentials, then you want to make sure that you find somebody that’s got some experience. Not necessarily in valuing your business because appraisers are experts in value and companies. Somebody who has experience in valuing businesses, whether they be in the private sector or for certain types of industries that they may have certain experience in.

Always make sure that you’re dealing with somebody who’s got the proper qualifications and the proper experience. Making that final selection you want to make sure that you select somebody that has a similar characteristic and a similar type of personality that you do. Some people work well together, some people don’t. You want to make sure that you’re comfortable and talk to you about all of these nuances about valuing and angel statements that you can get. You want to make sure that you can do that with somebody that you relate to and that is on the same level. Those are the 2 or 3 things I would leave anybody who’s considering engaging an appraiser at any point. If they’re looking to try to identify the value of their business, they’re going to end up running into some other things along the way.

The one thing that you can't do when you're looking at acquiring a business is overpay for it. Click To Tweet

It’s is such a pleasure to have you here. If the folks in the M&A Unplugged Community wanted to reach you, how can they best get a hold of you?

The firm is GCF Valuation. We’re based out of Tampa, Florida. Our website is GValue.com. If they want to contact me directly, I’m happy to take any questions. My email address is [email protected]. The direct line is area code (813) 658-3502. I’m always willing to take questions from anybody. It’s something that we do regularly. You want to talk valuation, I’m happy to take the call.

Darren, thanks so much. I appreciate it.

It’s my pleasure. I appreciate you having me on. I look forward to another session.

To highlight a few things that Darren brought up, if you’re an owner of a business, you need to be thinking in terms of cash flow and risk. If you’re marching down the path to maximize the value of your business with an ultimate exit in place, you want to maximize your cashflows. Minimize the expenses that are going through the discretionary expenses. Pump up your cashflow as much as possible. Show and depict the business in the best light. Risk, we’ve talked about this on many other shows around the value drivers of a business, the key things that will increase or decrease value. One, the owner not being the business, client concentrations.

There are many more, but you want to be thinking about cashflow risk, maximizing both of those so that you can get the highest return. If you’re a buyer, Darren gave some outstanding advice. You want to make sure you don’t get too emotionally involved in the transaction or so wrapped up in it that you lose sight of what the true value of the business is. Reality is that values arrange. There’s a low to a high, I call it the Reasonableness Range. As long as you’re in the reasonableness range, even if you’re on the high end of reasonableness, you’re fine. When things start to get unreasonable, then the odds that business could fail or you could be in trouble will go way up.

That was awesome advice and as Darren pointed out, you always want to be working with valuation companies that have the right certifications and the staff to deliver. I appreciated him being here. If you’d like to learn more about the process of acquiring or selling a business, please visit our website at SunAcquisitions.com or feel free to reach out to me at [email protected]. I look forward to seeing you again in the next episode. Until then, please remember at scaling, acquiring or selling a business, it takes time, preparation and the proper knowledge.

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About Darren Mize

MAU 36 | Maximizing Business ValueDarren Mize, ASA is with GCF Valuation, the first appraisal firm to serve the SBA 7(a) Lending Market starting in 1997. Darren is an Accredited Senior Appraiser (ASA) in Business Valuation with the American Society of Appraisers and has more than 22 years of business valuation experience.

GCF Valuation is a full-service business valuation firm based out of Tampa, Florida and Darren’s role as Partner and Senior Appraiser of the Firm’s M&A Division is to provide valuation consulting services to the Firm’s merger & acquisition and business intermediary clients involved with buy/sell transactions of privately-held businesses.

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