Planning for the future doesn’t come naturally for most, especially when it comes to business.

That’s why one Cwmbran accountancy firm is urging business owners to plan as early as possible when it comes to exiting their business.

Ed Gooderham, partner at Green & Co Accountants and Tax Advisors, said: “You have to start with the end in mind. You need to think about what you want to get out of your business in the long-term and how you are going to go about achieving that.

“In preparing for sale it’s important that the business owner has delegated key functions during their management, so that the business would continue to thrive when they are no longer involved.

"Succession planning is a key to achieving this as well as implementing structures and controls, which would then facilitate a seamless transition to the new management team.

“Once a competent management structure is in place, taking much of the stress away from the owner, they may decide to keep the company, but only work part-time, enjoying the stress free time away from the business.”

“Goals should be set to ensure that the business is as successful as possible to maximise the sale value. You should ensure that your management team are working together to achieve these goals and are also aware of the part that they each play in making the business as successful as possible in preparation of the sale.

“Sometimes, tough decisions need to be made for the best interest of the company. Be pragmatic and base all key decisions around the goal to sell the business as successfully as possible. If external skills are needed, consider recruiting personnel well-ahead of time in order for the transition to be a smooth a process as possible.

“Often, the structure of the deal necessitates that the business continues to pay the seller an income over a period of time, which can place additional pressure on the business. Therefore, it is vitally important the business continues to do well in the transition phase and after the sale for all parties.”

Green & Co Accountants and Tax Advisors specialise in business growth and tax minimisation for businesses across Wales and the South West of England.