Wednesday, December 3, 2008

It Works....Can't Thank You Enough

Is exit strategy planning working for your advisory business?

Well todays article illustrates a myriad of ways that it is working for other advisor's businesses.

We all know that there are millions of small business owners who need assistance with their businesses and business exits. Our Workshops reveal secrets about how to approach business owners with this topic (discussed in last week's newsletter). Advisors who follow the steps towards approaching business owners are getting results . . . and thanking us for sharing these secrets. In fact, it really comes down to confidence in the concept - that is the secret. And the key is getting started. When advisors challenge themselves to expand in this area, results are often-times immediate.

The advisors below agreed to have us share the successes that they have achieved with their marketing of this idea. I thank them once again and hope that this encourages more advisors to continue discussing this important topic with business owners.

Attendees at our latest 2-Day Exit Strategies Training Workshop report the following . . .

John, . . . A [marketing] mailing was sent out last Thursday [on the topic of exit strategy planning]. On Monday I received a telephone call from one of my clients who read my flyer. He wants me to assist him with obtaining some investment money for a company that he is involved with. His company provides alternative fuel sources through sun and wind. He has several potential contracts but needs some start up capital...He says he has about $40 million of work he can complete if he gets about $2-3 million.

Commentary: In this case, our Member will work with Pinnacle's network of transactional service providers (and cultivate his own relationships in his local market) to assist this 'stay and grow' / early stage business with achieving their capital raise. Along the way, he will be positioned in this relationship to provide guidance and support over the years that the company builds, and will assist with their personal planning for the potential future sale of this profitable business.

I was meeting with a new insurance agent for my business. We were discussing each others professions. I explained to her that beyond my accounting practice I have a new company that specializes in helping business owners exit their business. It just so happened that her father was the owner of the agency and she and her brother and sister were also in the agency. The father was working less and less, the kids were working more. She told me that she didn’t believe they had a plan and is very interested in meeting with me and her family to discuss options.

Commentary: These are the types of situations that we at Pinnacle see all of the time. Family businesses and small businesses that have succession planning issues surrounding the transfer of the business. Since 'gifting' the business is one of our 5 major exit options, this advisor is well versed in beginning a conversation about the merits of a gifting program - particularly as to the tax-efficient transfer of this wealth from one generation to the next. Again, it was just a matter of beginning the conversation. The advisor will charge a fee for the planning and position himself with two generations of owners in this business.


I sent out a press release to notify the community of the new company specializing in exit strategies. I received a call this morning from a 65 year old business owner who has a partner and wants to sell his business.

Commentary: Again, what more is there to be said. You spread the word that you can offer these services and the opportunities present themselves. If you have heard any of my Pinnacle coaching calls you come to see that the opportunities are always right in front of you . . . all you need to do is step up to meet them. This 65 year old will receive advice and guidance that he invariably needs to protect his wealth and - in all likelihood - step into a successful retirement.


I sent out a predictions story regarding the future of business transitions. It is going to be published by a “Family Business Magazine” and I have been asked to be interviewed by a franchise based publication regarding the topic.

Commentary: Yes, the media is becoming aware of the need for this service. Our Pinnacle office just launched a campaign to approach the New York / Financial media to spread this message nationwide. You can begin in your local markets and brand your practice around this valuable concept.


We held a seminar today entitled "Managing Family Wealth in Changing Markets". When I addressed the attendees (10 prospects with a minimum of $1 million of investable assets) I went off script and mentioned I help owners of privately held businesses exit their businesses. The only thing I said was that exiting does not mean selling, there are other options. One couple approached me and said they are trying to transfer their business to their children and weren't sure how to do that efficiently. We are going to talk next week.

Can't thank you enough.

Commentary: Again, it is simply a matter of letting the owners know that you can help. Once you open that door, you allow the business to come through it. The problem that we see most often is that advisors do not want to begin the conversation. This is unfortunate because the business owners in your local markets really need this help . . . and, because we are all paid for value of the services and advice that we provide, it is natural that we will make more money as advisors offering this unique service.

If you want to gain the confidence to have the exit strategy planning conversation, give our Silver Level Program a try.

Or order our Home Study Course

Either way, you will begin to make exit strategy planning a part of your practice. With a small effort, you may end up getting some rather dynamic results.

Specializing in Business Exit Strategies, John M. Leonetti, Esq., M.S. Finance, CM&AA founded Pinnacle Equity Solutions to provide exit strategy planning services to business owners as well as education and training programs for professional advisors. To learn more about John's Exit Strategy Services and his recently published book, "Exiting Your Business, Protecting Your Wealth", visit

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