The opportunity in Exit Planning

Based on the present demographics and research, Exit Planning is the obvious market for CPAs as many business owners are unprepared for their transition into retirement. PWC, CIBC World Markets and the Canadian Federation of Independent Business have studied these statistics endlessly.  Their research on business owners is consistent:

  • 66% are not familiar with the full range of exit options
  • 78% have no formal transition team
  • 83% have no written transition plan
  • 93% do not have a formal life-after-business plan

This message seems to be getting louder. See our article on what CPAs in New York are planning.

Our own personal observations through recent business travels in the United Sates are in harmony with the above-mentioned trends.  Having attended meetings for the American M&A Association in Las Vegas, Institute of Exit Planning (CEPA) in Chicago and Business Exit Institution (BEI) in Denver, the activity is the same.  CPAs are all trying to determine how to enter the field and generate new revenue streams.

A business owner’s CPA is almost always his most trusted advisor. This has been well demonstrated both anecdotally and by numerous studies. The John Robinson Group’s research shows Canadian CPA firms either failed or did a poor job for their clients at Exit Planning. Be clear that there is a vast difference between a client who is ready to Exit and seeks your advice, and 90% of the business owners who are not ready to Exit. The latter will take many months and a process that could involve many collaborative partners to enhance the value of the largest transaction of their lives.

The missing link is a systematized process with KPIs flow charts and tracking mechanisms to ensure all value is enhanced and maximized prior to exit.

If you are interested in having a higher value discussion on enhancing your fee revenues, please contact us.