- Understand the Client's Needs
- Create a Proposal & Engagement Letter
- Establish the Standard of Value, Purpose, & Valuation Date
- Gather Data
- Tax Return/Financial Statement Analysis & Ratios
- Normalize and Adjust (if applicable) Historical Financials
- Company, Industry & Peer Analysis
- Implement Selected Business Valuation Methods
- 1. Income (income-based) approach
- 2. Asset (asset-based) approach (used for businesses, business ownership interests, and securities) or cost approach (used for intangible assets)
- 3. Market (market-based) approach
- Generate a Draft Report
- All Parties Review the Draft Business Valuation for Accuracy
- Issue Final Report
What are the Steps of the Business Valuation Process?
Understand the Client’s Needs
How do you end up with a perfect product or service? It starts with a perfect purchase order. What are the client and their advisors trying to accomplish? Is this valuation so the business can go to market or is it for the courts or the IRS? Knowing the final audience and who might attack the valuation is that critical first step.
Create a Proposal & Engagement Letter
After understanding the purpose, audience, and stakeholders involved, the engagement letter can be crafted to ensure all parties are on the same page. This is typically the first step, which can often change the perceived needs of the stakeholders. Additionally, Assumptions and Limiting Conditions should be taken into consideration, outlining the parameters and boundaries of the valuation process. These should be agreed upon or acknowledged by the valuation analyst and the client, such as when the analyst accepts the client’s financial statements and associated information without further verification.
Establish the Standard of Value, Purpose, & Valuation Date
Taking all the above into account. The applicable standard of value must be specified and defined to provide the basis for any appraisal report or engagement. The applicable standard of value selection is determined largely based on the use to which the appraisal is to be put. Such as the determination of a tax liability or a price at which a particular transaction will take place.
Who Dictates the Engagement Rules?
Statute, regulation, case law precedent, or a binding legal document governing a transaction often dictates the standard of value for a particular appraisal engagement. It is important to recognize that many value terms have different definitions when used in different contexts. It is essential that the appropriate standard of value is defined. This also include the approaches and methodology employed to conform to the standard.
Setting the As Of Valuation Date
An asset has a dollar value at the point in time of the valuation date. It commonly refers to the valuation of assets distributed upon the occurrence of an event when using this term. Or a periodic determination of worth for reporting purposes. For example, it may be the designated time of closing (monthly, quarterly, etc.) for the determination of account balances in a defined-contribution or defined benefit plan. The general rule will be that a court will most strongly consider the value at the date of distribution.
By having the ability to determine the valuation dates within its discretionary power, the court has another tool at its disposal to bring equity to asset distribution. For instance, when dealing with a divorce matter, the court may need to figure out how to divide assets such as a family home, securities, commercial real estate, or business goodwill. Depending on the state, the valuation date may vary, with the trial date, the date of final separation, or date of divorce complaint typically being used. Yet, some states may have a more discretionary approach to the date in question. It is important to consult local laws for specific requirements in your area.
Business Appraisal FL|GA business valuation checklist allows users to pre-gather data. The faster you get the data to us the faster we can generate a draft valuation. Once you know how and under what conditions a business’s worth will be measured. It is time to gather the relevant data that impacts the business value. This data may include the business financial statements, operational procedures, marketing and business plans, customer and vendor information, and staff records. The quality and timeliness of the data is also a variable.
Tax Return/Financial Statement Analysis & Ratios
Businesses must file federal tax returns annually. We can use the information contained in these tax returns to determine the business’s financial strengths and weaknesses. Lenders often perform a detailed analysis of a business’s tax returns to assess the risk associated with lending. The analysis involves examining the tax return and calculating financial ratios from tax return numbers. To ascertain the business’s performance according to industry benchmarks, one often compares it to other businesses in the same industry.
Normalize and Adjust (if applicable) Historical Financials
Normalize adjustments to the Income Statement: What are they? We must adjust the income statement to compare the “normal” return of a private company to those of a public company. The owner needs to review and possibly adjust everything from their compensation to market rents. We make these adjustments to compare the income streams to that of a freely traded stock or ownership interest. Privately held companies often require one-time adjustments for non-operating expenses or other one-time events.
Company, Industry & Peer Analysis
How your company compares to its peers is a critical variable in the valuation process. Furthermore, as industries wax and wane, earnings multiples often fluctuate, expanding and contracting accordingly. Additionally, the size of your company relative to its competitors will also have a bearing on the overall valuation. Comparable company analysis starts with establishing a peer group consisting of similar companies of similar size in the same industry or region. Investors are then able to compare a company to its competitors on a relative basis.
Implement Selected Business Valuation Methods
In developing the valuation, the valuation analyst should consider the three most common valuation approaches:
1. Income (income-based) approach
2. Asset (asset-based) approach (used for businesses, business ownership interests, and securities) or cost approach (used for intangible assets)
3. Market (market-based) approach
The valuation analyst should select and use the appropriate valuation approaches and methods for the valuation engagement. Often incorporating multiple approaches and providing reasons for the selection.
Generate a Draft Report
At least one of the party’s heads will have a lightbulb go off when they issue a draft report. Comparing the expected valuation to the reality given the parameters and constraining conditions.
All Parties Review the Draft Business Valuation for Accuracy
Your CPA, attorney, partners, or other stakeholders need to understand the valuation and ensure all terms and adjustments pass the reality test.
Issue Final Report
A Valuation Time Frame (client-driven) can range from 2-6 weeks. The faster you get us the data, the faster you get a professional and certified business valuation, by an accredited Business Appraisal FL|GA team member.
As a business owner, do you need help with your business valuation steps or what makes up business valuations? Please call or contact BA FL|GA.