5 “Do’s” and “Don’ts” of Networking With Business Bankers to Find a Great Business For Sale

Business bankers can be an excellent resource in networking to find a great business for sale. Bankers will have great relationships with their business clients and they will know which businesses have great potential. A business banker is also highly motivated to help sell a business or help find a new business buyer because they know they will help retain the banking relationships after closing.Here are a few tips to use when networking with business bankers to find a business for sale.1. “Do” -Provide Business bankers with a letter of interest or a letter of intent from your accountant – A letter stating that you are prequalified for financing and that specifies your criteria in a business will get your local business banker’s blood pumping. Business bankers are always seeking to retain existing corporate accounts and find new ones. In the letter explain that you would be willing to retain the services of the business banker after the closing.2. “Don’t” – Ask your Business banker to refer you to a business for sale – The traditional business or commercial banker relationship with their clients is simply one of anonymity. I have tried to get “dirt” from several business bankers only to find that they will stay true to keeping their clients information in confidence.3. “Do” – Ask your business or commercial banker if they know of any potential acquisition opportunities – Obviously any business banker worth his or her salt is not going to give you information on the company – however a good relationship builder will want to service his clients anyway he can. This may include taking your Letter of Interest (or Intent) and handing it to one of their existing clients.4. “Don’t” – Put all of your eggs in one basket when working with Business bankers- Networking is a game of relationships and numbers. It’s a good strategy in business to have as many good contacts with good business or commercial bankers as possible. Keep a rolodex or database of all of these individuals. Make a point to follow up with these people at least once every 3 months. Ask what types of loans their banks are approving and one what criteria. Too often business owners develop one really strong relationship with one bank, and when that bank declines to loan them money they end up in an absolute crisis.5. “Do” – Network with Business or commercial bankers outside of your geographical area. Most of the time the really good opportunities require that you drive or fly a distance to get them. If the deal is good don’t be afraid to travel, commute or relocate to buy a business. Business bankers in your particular geographic area frequently get to know several other representatives in different areas. Incentivize business bankers to look for you.

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