Episode 38: Thomas Smale – Investor Insights: Fundraising and Exit Outlook for 2023

SaaS Fuel is joined this week by Thomas Smale, founder of FE International, a company that specializes in preparing businesses for acquisition. Tune in to learn more about the ins and outs of M&As from an industry expert.

Episode Sponsor

Champion Leadership Group – https://championleadership.com/

Navigating Success Together 2023 Virtual Event

Key Takeaways

1:48 The Beginnings of FE International 

4:04 VC Investors  vs M&A 

5:29 What makes a business buyable? 

7:23 Why do deals go unannounced? 

9:47 What is success? 

11:51 What your business should and shouldn’t be tracking, and why 

19:30 Planning the perfect exit strategy

25:12 How owning a business has changed over the past decade

29:25 Planning the sale of a business 

37:07 Finding the right buyer

43:03 Which buyers win deals?

Tweetable Quotes

18:39 “The most important metrics to you will and should change over time, and if you're never changing them, then I would argue maybe you're not looking critically enough at your business.” 

17:07 “In my experience, if you track too much, you lose sight of what’s really important.”  

37:07 “The most important thing is finding a buyer who is a good cultural or value-based match for you. And that's also why it's important to not just sell to the first company that approaches you – and why you should run a comprehensive M&A process. And what we often find, well, almost all the time, is that most people have a misconception that a business always sells to the highest bidder or the highest offer. That's not necessarily the case. Sellers will often sell

To who they like the most, or who they think is the best fit for taking over and running the business, and matches their goals as a founder.”

Guest Resources

Twitter: @ThomasSmale

Episode Sponsor

Champion Leadership Group – https://championleadership.com/

Small Fish, Big Pond – https://smallfishbigpond.com/ Use the promo code ‘SaaSFuel’