Seller's FAQ

Do you really have a potential buyer that may be interested in my business?

Yes.  BatonUSA begins with a potential buyer completing an Apprentice Application, Application Agreement, Registration Agreement and a Confidentiality Non-Disclosure Agreement.  The Apprentice/Buyer has told BatonUSA what type of business he/she would like and the specific location.  That is the only reason why you, and other businesses like yours in your area, have been contacted by one of BatonUSA’s Account Managers.  BatonUSA’s Account Manager will provide you the Apprentice/Buyer Profile which includes a picture, the name and background information (education, work history) of the Apprentice/Buyer.  The Apprentice/Buyer profile will also include our estimate in time the Apprenticeship/Buyer program should last from start to finish.  Our service is an exclusive program free of charge to Qualified Honorable Discharged United States Military personnel and their spouses.

Ok, so you have someone that is looking for a business like mine located where my business is located. If I take on an “Apprentice/Buyer” how do I know that the Apprentice/Buyer will offer a fair price for my business?

Before any Apprentice/Buyer program starts, BatonUSA will act as a mediator to have a Letter of Intent (LOI) signed by the Apprentice/Buyer.  The LOI will detail the offer as to Price & Terms.  You will have the opportunity to accept, counter offer or decline the offer before accepting the Apprentice/Buyer.  When the two of you are in agreement as to “Price & Terms” that is Fair Market Value as defined by the United States Supreme Court.

How long does it take to sell my business through BatonUSA’s Apprentice/Buyer Program?

We want to help the Apprentice/Buyer buy your business with an SBA backed loan.  The bank that has an SBA backing on the loan will offer an annual interest rate lower than a conventional loan and the Buyer won’t be facing a “balloon payment”.  The lenders working with SBA backed loans usually require the Buyer to have a minimum of two years experience working in the industry of the business they will be purchasing.  Some of our Apprentice/Buyers have met this requirement before applying for the BatonUSA Apprentice/Buyer program, others have not.  For those that already have the two years under their belt the Apprentice/Buyer Program will be a relatively short time of just a couple of months.  For those that do not have the two years minimum experience it will be a longer time, about two years.  The Apprentice/Buyer Profile that you receive from BatonUSA will state the working experience for your industry of the Apprentice/Buyer.  Completing the sale of your business to an Apprentice/Buyer that requires a two year program is still better (and shorter in time) than trying to find a buyer on your own and then trying to work through the transaction to Closing.  Even an inexperienced 25 year old honorably discharged soldier fresh out of tech school that wants to own a business is better than anyone you can find with or without a Broker’s help.

BatonUSA did not contact me with an Apprentice/Buyer Match. I’m contacting you because I have an existing employee that I would like to sell my business to. I do not wish to “carry all the paper” on the sale. Can my employee apply for your Apprentice/Buyer Program, and can you help manage him/her through the process as an Apprentice/Buyer to help get him/her financing for the purchase?

Yes, as long as your employee has an honorable discharge from United States Military service, or is a spouse/child/grandchild of a Vet.  Your existing employee may apply for our Apprentice/Buyer Program.   Everything related to your employee and our service is the same with exception of our “Success Fee”.  Our Success Fee will be reduced to 5% (five per cent) of the total compensation you receive for the sale of you business.  The process and steps taken in BatonUSA’s Apprentice/Buyer Program work the same for you and your employee as it does for other Business Owner/Sellers and their Apprentice/Buyers.  There is no guarantee that your employee will be able to gain financing for the purchase, that will be based upon lender qualifications.  But by following through with all recommendations from BatonUSA’s assigned Account Manager your chances of achieving what you and your employee want will be significantly increased.

What is Fair Market Value?

In United States tax law, the definition of fair market value is found in the United States Supreme Court decision in the Cartwright case: “The fair market value is the price at which the property would change hands between a willing buyer and a willing seller, neither being under any compulsion to buy or to sell and both having reasonable knowledge of relevant facts.”   From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia: “Fair market value (FMV) is an estimate of the value of a property, based on what a knowledgeable, willing, and unpressured buyer would probably pay to a knowledgeable, willing and unpressured seller in the market.”

Why do I have to pay for the On-site Evaluation of my business?

Every new owner after purchasing a business has to be able to “service their debt and earn a  living”.  Business owners wishing to sell may have an “over valued sense of their business worth”.  Is the business viable?  What is the EBITDA, Owner Cash Flow, Seller’s Discretionary Income?  What are the business assets and their worth?  Is the Seller committed to the selling process?

The On-site Evaluation conducted by a BatonUSA Independent Contracted Business Analyst determines that the business is owned by a seller who is a reasonable person, decisive and dedicated to the process of selling a viable business.  These are the only businesses we accept to be matched with our Apprentice/Buyer.

As part of the On-site Evaluation the Business Analyst gathers information that BatonUSA will use to prepare an Executive Business Summary (EBS).  A copy of the EBS will be given to the Business Owner/Seller and the Apprentice/Buyer.  The Apprentice/Buyer will use this report to help make a decision about their interest in the business.  The Business Analyst, while on location at the business, will recast the financial reports (P & L Statements, Tax Returns) to help determine the actual profits of the business that the P & L and Tax Returns do not show.  The Business Analyst will not determine the value of the business.  The company information gathered by the Business Analyst will be sent to BatonUSA’s home office.  When the information is received by our home office an Opinion of Value Report will be composed and sent to the Business Owner/Seller.

It costs to have these professionals travel to your business location, and others to prepare the reports (Executive Business Summary and Opinion of Value).

Why do I have to pay one-half of the On-site Evaluation Fee before the BatonUSA Business Analyst even arrives?

The Independent Business Analyst may have to travel a great distance to arrive at your business for the evaluation.  We want to make sure you are there when scheduled.

Is my On-site Evaluation Fee ever refundable?

Yes.  If the BatonUSA Business Analyst fails to contact you to schedule the evaluation, or fails to show up for the evaluation once it’s scheduled, you may request a full refund and it will be promptly paid.  However, there may be a good reason why the Business Analyst was unable to show at the designated time and location.  After discovering the cause you may wish to simply reschedule, rather than request the refund.  Your choice.

What is the amount of the fee that BatonUSA charges for the On-Site Evauation?

The On-Site Evaluation fee will include two written reports, a Executive Business Summary provided to the Apprentice/Buyer and the Business Owner/Seller, and an Opinion of Value Report provided to the Business Owner/Seller. The fee will be discussed with a BatonUSA Authorized Officer at the time of scheduling.  At this time we can not offer a direct response to that question as travel distance and travel arrangements need to be analyzed.  If you feel the fee is to much don’t schedule the On-Site Evaluation.   We will try to keep the fee as close to $3500 as possible.

What are my financial risks to participate in BatonUSA’s Apprentice/Buyer program?

Your On-site Evaluation Fee will be your only risk.  The only other fee you pay BatonUSA is our Success Fee that is paid as you and the Apprentice/Buyer “cross the finish line”.

How much is your “Success Fee”?

The Success Fee is paid when you “Close” the sale of your business to our Apprentice/Buyer.  It is paid at Closing.  The Success Fee is 6 1/2% of the total amount in value you will be receiving for your business.  This is much less than the standard 10% a Business Broker charges, and about the same as a Real Estate Broker.  Our Success Fee is for properly managing the Apprentice/Buyer through the program so that they can purchase the business from you.  We do not sell businesses.  We work as consultants and inter-mediators for both you and the Apprentice/Buyer.