Video 15 – How Is My Financial Information Kept Secure During A Business Sale?

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Rob Goddard:

How on earth, Mike, do we keep confidentiality when we go to market?

Mike Whittle:

Yeah, it’s a good question. This came up at a masterclass-

Rob Goddard:

Yeah, it did.

Mike Whittle:

… just a few months back actually. One of our legal partners answered the question, very specifically around nondisclosure agreements, NDAs. So if you think about how we work, typically within our process, the only people we’re going to contact are on an approved research list that you sign off as our client before we ever start engaging to market.

Mike Whittle:

Within that research list, if we find people who are interested, the first thing they’ll do is sign a nondisclosure agreement. And that’s a legally binding document that protects the confidentiality of your information and you as a client. If someone breaches that, we have legal recourse. We’ve never had to use it because we’re very careful about how we choose the people for your campaign, and your veto as the client in that process to sign off the people you want us to approach. But you are protected through a legally binding contractual document.

Rob Goddard:

Okay, Steve?

Steve Barry:

Nothing to add, I think, really. I mean I can’t think of an instance where we’ve had a problem with it. It would be fair to say again, whether it’s a trade investor acquirer or a financial institution we are working with, I’m sure I could answer for all of us and say if we did ever have a situation where a partner we’d introduced as a potential investor acquirer breached confidentiality and NDA, we would never work with them.

Mike Whittle:

No, absolutely.

Rob Goddard:

Yeah. Yeah. And it’s the age old thing, how can you covertly market something? Difficult. You do need to approach some people in order to create competitive tension, but it’s done within the confines of confidentiality and nondisclosure groups. In 20 years, only a handful of breaches. And in each of them, has been the seller, our client, that’s breached confidentiality. They’ve left things on the printer in the office, would you believe, for staff to find. Or someone’s had access to their work email. They’ve got an out-of-office, but it’s gone to someone, an administrative person.

Rob Goddard:

So actually it’s the buyers are really worried about you as a seller spilling the beans.

Mike Whittle:

And there’s a really salient-

Rob Goddard:

Inadvertently.

Mike Whittle:

Process point here as well. Part of our USP in the market is everything we do is handcrafted around you as a client and proactively driven. So your choice out there in the mass market, maybe to select a partner that really pops your details onto a website potentially, or posts your details onto a repository for people to look at, where they sign an online NDA and anyone can see that, in our world, that’s not acceptable. We handcraft and select the people we’re going to approach and get you to agree it before we ever engage in that campaign. So I think it’s about selecting the right partner as well, what’s appropriate for your business?

Rob Goddard:

Yeah. Good point.

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Alternatively, If you would like to discuss a potential business sale with one of our Client Directors, please either call Amanda on 0118 959 8224, email agale@evolutioncbs.co.uk or Make An Online Enquiry.

© 2020 Evolution Complete Business Sales Ltd.

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