As a small business owner, the time will come when you decide you need to make a change. Perhaps you’ve decided to move on from your business, even retire. But letting go may seem overwhelming. That’s why formulating an exit strategy is important. There are many questions and many options to explore. For example, as a small print shop owner, you may be wondering how to successfully earn a return on your investment. Having a strong exit plan equates to the opportunity for great profit potential.

Planning your exit

While some may love to make a grand entrance, it’s equally important to have a grand exit plan. The strength of your exit strategy is the difference between a smooth or bumpy transition as you part ways with your business. That strategy is the blueprint for leaving. It outlines how you plan to depart the business you built. Typically, this is all part of the initial business plan. However, things change — the market changes, your business grows, your plans change; all of which calls for some tweaking along the way.

Choosing the right strategy for your business

The exit plan you choose depends on some very important details. Consider the profit you’d like to make, in addition to the future role, if any, you’d like to have with the business. Being a small print shop owner and probably having built your business yourself, you may choose to transition out of the business or depart quickly for retirement. This could mean an emotional end to a business dream, so you have to choose the exit strategy wisely.

Before making a decision, carefully consider a few key issues. First, you need to know your company’s valuation. Look at assets and growth potential and understand the financial health of your company. Examine the market and decide whether it’s a good time to sell. How is the economic climate? Will your business be in demand? How will you market the business and emphasize the strengths of the purchase for potential buyers? You will want to decide how to tell your employees about the potential sale. Certainly, these may be uncharted waters for a small business owner. It’s advisable to seek expert advice from an attorney to navigate this matter.

How to sell your business

There are multiple options when it comes to selling your small print shop. The most common include:

  • Management Buyout. You will sell your company to someone you know or perhaps a manager or employee interested in taking over the business.
  • Liquidation. This occurs when a business completely shuts down through the sale of all its assets.
  • Open Market Sale. A small business goes up for sale at a pre-determined price and is sold at value.
  • Merger and Acquisition. A larger company purchases a smaller company. This means the value of your company may be driven up in a multiple offer situation.
  • Acquisitions. Selling a company to another business either through cash, stock options or a combination of both. The buyer may decide to retain you and your management team or opt to make operational changes. This can often mean a quick sale.

Benefits of selling your small print shop to a franchise

Or you may decide to go in another direction. Consider a franchising option. Designed for independent printers, the Allegra Advantage ProgramSM allows you to access the many benefits of the Allegra Network by transitioning your business to our brand.

With it, you’ll gain the tools and franchise support programs needed to diversify beyond printing into direct mail, marketing services, promotional products and/or wide-format printing. In doing so, you can increase sales and earnings, build greater equity, operate more efficiently, and position yourself for a more profitable exit when the time comes. You’ll also have support selling your business to another investor when you’re ready.

Allegra Centers provide graphic design, printing, mailing, promotional products and marketing services needed by virtually every local business and institution. As an owner, you’ll benefit from the unsurpassed network support provided by Alliance Franchise Brands — a world leader in marketing and visual communications.

What should you do now to sell your business in five years?

As a small print shop owner, you can benefit from the proven Allegra franchise business model on a long-term basis or, if you’re interested in retiring or moving on soon, you can participate with just a five-year commitment.

It’s a unique opportunity with the goal of growing the value of your business to help you sell your business whenever you’re ready. 

Transitioning your operation to one of our franchises through our Allegra Advantage Program offers independent printers like yourself the opportunity to increase sales and earnings, build greater equity, operate more efficiently, and position yourself for a more profitable exit.

Specifically, the program is for independent printers who:

  • Want to align their operation with an established national brand
  • Are tired of going it alone and want the advice of others in similar businesses
  • Desire a proven path toward growth, diversification, greater operating efficiency, and the potential for higher profitability via a time-tested franchise business model
  • Seek to benefit from the buying power, technical resources, training opportunities and other franchise support offered through the 270+ member Allegra Network
  • May be considering selling within five years and want to avoid paying high commissions to brokers

Even though you’ve been a successful print shop owner, by becoming a Franchise Member, you will have industry leaders guiding you through this transition process. There is tremendous support and ongoing assistance and training to ensure the success of the conversion, including the latest innovative technologies.

Learn more about Allegra

There are many exit strategies to choose from. Becoming an Allegra Franchise Member affords you the opportunity to grow your business with world-class franchise support. We’re here to help if you want to learn about selling your business by converting it to an Allegra franchise.