Type: Law Bulletins
Date: 01/23/2013

What Type of Legal Representation is Needed to Sell or Buy a Company?

Entry from Crain’s Cleveland Business "Ask the M&A Pro" weekly blog, posted January 23, 2013.

"I’m ready to sell or buy a company. What should I seek in terms of legal representation and how soon?"

It is imperative from the perspectives of cost, efficiency, process and negotiating leverage that thoughtful planning and preparation occur on the front-end before deal negotiations commence, whether on the buy-side or sell-side of a business sale transaction. So, seeking skilled legal counsel sooner rather than later is always recommended.

When selling a business, adopting the right sales process and making sure that your business house is in order are key. Finding the right potential buyers and making the right first impression are critical in maximizing offers, terms and conditions and decreasing the likelihood of downward renegotiation when due diligence issues arise. Remember, as a seller, you will never have as much negotiating leverage as you do in the letter of intent stage.

On the buy-side, knowing what to look for in due diligence, having a preferred structure of transaction and financing in mind, and locking a seller in exclusive negotiations are all fundamental precursors to a successful acquisition.

About the Author:
Taft partner Dominic A. DiPuccio has counseled buyers and sellers for more than 20 years on all aspects of the merger and acquisition process, including due diligence, letters of intent, deal structures, pricing alternatives, negotiations, documentation and closings. He also counsels companies and investors on a wide range of private financings.

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