Friday, November 30, 2012

Walden Businesses at M&A Source Conference

Chet Walden addresses the 20th anniversary attenders to the M&A Source Conference in Las Vegas.

Chet presents Liz Fouti with a special award honoring her for her and her husband's contributions to the M&A Source.

The M&A Board for 2012 is awarded special momentos for their work during the 2012 session.

Pino Bacinello, Chairman of IBBA is recognized by Chet Walden for his outstanding assistance to the M&A Source.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Walden Raleigh Office Principle, Jacqui Roth, CBI Certified Broker

It’s official… CBI Certified Broker!

Walden Businesses celebrates the certification of our Principle Raleigh Broker, Jacqueline Roth. After successful completion of several IBBA courses, she passed the CBI certification exam at the M&A Source fall conference in Las Vegas. She has shown tremendous promise in the speed at which she has been able to learn and absorb a vast amount of material involved in learning the craft of successful Business Brokerage.

Her ambition and expertise will bring great contributions to the Mergers and Acquisitions market in Raleigh, North Carolina. You can reach Jacqui at or by phone at 919-616-3036 for a confidential discussion about your business. Jacqui is part of a 24 year old company, with over 150 years of combined M&A experience.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Atlanta Firm Digging Up Deals in Latin America: Global Atlanta

For American firms, international deals often stem from chance encounters. But not all companies have the foresight to convert happenstance into strategy.
Walden Businesses Inc., a 25-year-old consultancy focused on mergers and acquisitions, had seen a steady trickle of international deals since it helped a German firm buy a fabric manufacturer in Dallas in 2000, but it wasn't until it entered Central America a few years ago that the global side of the business really took off.
A new Walden office staffed by two consultants in San JoseCosta Rica, is now handling a steady flow of inquiries from the region. A Paraguay company has tapped Walden to help purchase a Costa Rican firm, and a pepper farm in Central America is using Walden to find a buyer.
"My office in Costa Rica is probably averaging three to four calls a week out of South America," said Chet Walden, president and CEO, who noted that telecommunications in Argentina is just one of the hot sectors in the region.
All this began with a presentation Mr. Walden gave before a chamber of commerce in San Jose. One attendee was a board member for a private hospital there and approached Mr. Walden for help finding a buyer. Already with broad experience in the health care sector, Mr. Walden assembled a team in Costa Rica to get the deal done.

"That just led to other opportunities, so I did some market research about Central America and it is an extremely active market right now," Mr. Walden told Global Atlanta.
But the deals aren't always away from home. Walden, which employs 17 people in Atlanta, has seen its international deal volume triple over the last five years. It now accounts for about 20 percent of its overall business. Inquiries from countries like Denmark and China have been pouring in as foreign firms look for discounts in a slowly recovering U.S. economy.
"I think it's driven by uncertainty around the world. People know what they have now, what they can do now. They don't know what they're going to do in 2013," Mr. Walden said. "What's happening is that people are wanting to move money from their country into ours. Because of the dollar being down, they're getting a bigger value for their buck."
Walden's Dunwoody offices are bursting at the seams, but the company has no plans to add staff in Atlanta. Along with the Costa Rica office staffed by consultants Ignacio Zamora and Orlando Heilbron, Walden also recently merged with Buckhead Business Brokers of Atlanta and First Coast Business Advisors of Jacksonville, Fla., adding new locations to existing offices in Atlanta and RaleighN.C.
Global activity will continue to be integral to growth, Mr. Walden said.
"It was not really a surprise. We saw an opportunity, and we wanted to be out in front of our competition," he said.
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Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Student Internships Available - Atlanta, GA

Business Internship Program at Walden Businesses
Walden Businesses is an Atlanta based firm with offices in Atlanta, Costa Rica, Jacksonville and Raleigh. Walden assists corporations and individuals in the sales, acquisitions and mergers of light manufacturing, distribution, and Business-to-Business service and technology companies with valuations up to $100 million. Based in the Southeast, our approach is one of flexibility, offering a full array of advisory services to a local, national and international marketplace. Our clients range from small businesses and serial entrepreneurs to major corporations and private equity firms.
The principals of Walden hold varied industry-relevant designations and are committed to assisting clients in achieving their business objectives while maintaining a confidential, ethical relationship. Walden’s environment is supportive with opportunities for exposure, overview into the field of Mergers and Acquisitions and development. Together for 25 years, the President and VP are national leaders in the M&A community. Chet Walden is currently completing his term as 2012 Chairman of the national association, The M&A Source.

Candidates will not be required for any set amount of hours but would be in their best interest to attend 2 to 3 days a week, half days are always possible so they may be exposed to as much information as possible. Office hours are from 9:00am to 5:00pm Monday through Friday.
There are many diverse aspects of the firm in which you will be entrusted. You will report to the Operations Manager and will be required to execute a Confidentiality Agreement due to the sensitive nature of the work.
Marketing Support: Includes assisting the Operation Manager with marketing Walden and its clients as a liaison to the media and buyer communities. Responsibilities may include areas of advertising, branding, direct marketing, graphic design, packaging, promotion, publicity, public relations, creation of pitch books, buyer’s list and online marketing.
Business Administration: Involves participating in business round-table meetings in-house and sitting in on conference calls. Activities may include client file management, preparing business profiles, studying trade statistics and evaluating the trends in internal business deals. Prior knowledge of business affairs, local, national and international, would be an asset, but is not required.
Financial Assessment/ Research: Involves activities that include working with and analyzing companies for market comparison and valuation. The candidate for this position should possess a bold personality and be able to generate reports while also checking and possibly assisting in the compilation and handling of financial documents, SWOT analysis and financial projections.

For Consideration, Contact: Elizabeth Ferguson, Operations and Marketing Manager.  678.277.9346

Thursday, July 12, 2012

2013 Capital Gains Tax Increases

If you are already contemplating an exit strategy or the timing is appropriate to consider it, please be aware of the following changes in tax law effective January 1, 2013.

·       Expiration of Bush tax cuts; Capital gains tax rate increases from 15.0% to 20.0%

·       Implementation of 3.8% Health Reform Tax on “certain income” (includes capital gains)

·       Seller will pay 23.8% in total taxes in 2013 versus 15.0% in 2012

     Exemplary Transaction: Tax on $10MM in capital gains

                                        2012: $1.5 MM

                                       2013: $2.38 MM

At some point, almost all businesses owners consider the sale of their company. The reasons vary; retirement, the creation of liquidity or the pursuit of other interests.  Walden’s role is simply to assist the business owner in defining and executing a meaningful exit strategy that is supportive of their own personal and financial goals.

Walden Businesses, Inc.
8395 Dunwoody Place, Building 5
Atlanta, GA  30350

Office: (678) 277-9951
Fax: (678) 277-9346

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

2012 Presents Unique Business Sale Opportunity

For those business owners who are thinking of a sale in the next five years or so, there are several compelling reasons to make 2012 the year to execute your exit strategy. This year will offer a unique combination of factors that may yield a quicker sale and more after-tax proceeds to the owner.

Expiration of the Bush Tax Cuts
The final years of the Clinton presidency produced budget surpluses that the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) projected would continue into the foreseeable future. In response to these projections, the incoming Bush administration advocated for a series of tax cuts that were designed to – in essence – “give back” the projected surpluses to the individual taxpayers. Thus, the tax cuts of 2001 and 2003 were enacted which provided for a lowering of individual marginal tax rates and a significant reduction of the capital gains rate.  In that the tax cuts were designed to “give back” tax surpluses (thus, increasing the national debt) they were enacted with a 10-year “sunset provision” which called for an expiration of the cuts unless further extended by Congress. The cuts were extended for an additional two years in 2010 as part of the Obama administration’s recovery efforts. Thus, as we stand now, the cuts are again scheduled to expire at the end of 2012 unless further extended by Congress.
Two points……recent experience has made it clear that Congress is at a legislative standstill with neither Democrats nor Republicans willing to give in to reach the compromise necessary to agree to a tax cut extension. Additionally, as 2012 is a presidential election year, hyper-partisanship makes legislative compromise highly unlikely. Thus, it seems likely that the tax cuts will expire as scheduled at the end of the year.
As a result, if you’re thinking of eventually selling your businesses, a sale in 2012 would enable you to take advantage of the existing lowered tax rates on any profit that may result from the sale. Depending on the size of the business, a sale in this year could result in a significant financial advantage to the owner.

Vast Pool of Business Buyers
The job losses that occurred during the Great Recession have resulted in a vast pool of potential business buyers hungry to change the course of their lives. Rather than reentering the job market, many are opting to buy a business where they anticipate being better able to control their destiny going forward. As the economy recovers and other opportunities are presented, this existing pool will be substantially decreased as potential buyers opt for more traditional employment. 2012 will be a prime year to tap into this pool of potential buyers. Additionally, private equity groups and other investment firms are intent on building their portfolios and raising funds in anticipation of increased merger activity as the economy improves.

Streamlined (and Improved) Operations
Businesses that have survived over the past several years have done so by working smart. Oftentimes this has meant trimming expenses to offset decreased revenue volumes. This has resulted in businesses becoming “lean and hungry” and poised to be highly profitable as revenues get back to pre-recession levels. Businesses that have survived and have reinvented themselves are in demand by business buyers. Revenue decreases are not uncommon - almost expected - during recessionary periods and those who have taken proactive steps in response are prized by savvy buyers.
If an exit from your business is on the horizon, 2012 should be the year for you to take action. The current economic and political climates appear to be right for you to cash out and reap the reward for your efforts.  As business sales typically take from six to nine months to successfully execute, immediate action is required to take advantage of the pending opportunity.