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Marketing Services Company

Author: Larry Chester, President

Two colleagues going over the financials, turn to our services for fractional CFO Indiana consultants.

Successful Schaumburg Marketing Services Company needed us to perform due diligence and assist with an acquisition.

 This is a family business owned by two brothers in their mid-60’s, each having children working in the business with no succession plan in place. We helped them devise a successful succession plan to allow the two brothers to retire, comfortable that the business they built was in good hands.


Succession Planning Services Provided:

  • With current trust and will documents being more than 8 years old, we assembled a team of advisors to help in the planning process. The team included a financial advisor, tax attorney, social worker and business valuation specialist.
  • A series of meetings were held with the Social Worker and the family members in the business to bring into the open any interpersonal issues that had been suppressed, but were affecting their business relationships.
  • Our Certified Financial Planner met with the family units to develop individualized retirement plans for each group, based on lifestyle expectations and earnings forecasts.
  • The Tax and Estate Planning Attorney taught the family members about the specifics of the current tax and inheritance law.
  • Based on the specific needs of the business owners and their families, as well and current laws, regulations, etc., we supervised the drafting of new trusts, wills, and Powers of Attorney for Healthcare and Property issues as needed to adequately protect the business, the owners and their families.
  • After the business valuation was completed, a buy/sell agreement was negotiated between the two brothers to provide a tax beneficial method of transferring the ownership of the company in the event of one of the brothers’ untimely death.
  • Conversations concerning the planned retirement of the owners and their successors are now part of an ongoing process, as circumstances may change from time to time.

M&A Advisory Services Provided:

  • Met with owners to discuss proposed acquisitions, which included two other marketing services companies whose owners were retiring.
  • We developed a due diligence plan to provide a full understanding of the risks and rewards of each contemplated acquisition.
    • A valuation was performed to assess the value of each proposed business, in addition to the synergy (integration) of staff and the product lines.
    • The importance of various elements of the acquisitions were evaluated and discussed with the proposed buyers (our client).


Succession Planning Results:  According to surveys (PWC), as many as 8 out of every 10 boomer business owners are facing retirement without a succession plan, as most of their time is spent working in the business instead of on the business.  Without a succession plan, 70% of family businesses won’t make it to the second generation.  And, in the case of family businesses, the people and their issues are a majority of the bigger picture.  CFO Simplified put together a qualified team to evaluate the bigger picture of this family business.  As a result the new succession plan we drafted eliminates any uncertainty and discord that may occur later, and increases the likelihood of continued success of this family business into future generations.

M&A Advisory Results:  To mitigate risk, an acquisition requires than an enormous amount of data (financials, taxes, accounting, labor, etc) about the target be evaluated.  Our expert and unbiased evaluation determined that one of the companies was a good fit, both business-wise and culturally. It was also determined that the other company fell short of being the desirable target they had anticipated, and any plans regarding its acquisition were discarded.

Overall, our expertise helped these buyers avoid a large risk in one instance, while also successfully negotiating mutually satisfactory contracts with the suitable target.  In this transaction, it was important for the seller to know that their employees would be taken care of, they were being paid a reasonable price for their business, and that they would be working for the next few years, assuring a successful and profitable transition, and acquisition result.  As for the buyers, they were delighted to have acquired a new business segment that enhanced, complemented and augmented their existing clientele and bottom line.


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